Majnun Ben-David
                     writer
#GoodPhrases

Phrases I Liked: John McCarthy

April is National Poetry Month in the US. April is also Sexually Transmitted Disease Awareness Month (seriously) and, in a few southern states, Confederate Loser History Month. There's a poem in that trio of honorees. Or a bad joke.

Personally, I'm sticking with April as Poetry Month. As such, I wanted to share some favorite lines from a newly published collection of poetry: "
Ghost County" by John McCarthy from the fine folks at Midwestern Gothic. McCarthy is the managing editor of Quiddity, the lit journal and radio program. "Ghost County" is, I believe, his first collection, but his poems have appeared in a number of journals (see list here). He also edited the anthology [Ex]tinguished & [Ex]tinct: An Anthology of Things that No Longer [Ex]ist from Twelve Winters Press (see disclaimer below).

I'm not well-versed in poetry. As
John Cheever said, "the disciplines [poetry and short stories] are as different as shooting a twelve-gauge shotgun and swimming." On the other hand, both of those activities are things I can easily picture Cheever doing, maybe even at the same time ("nothing like potting a few grouse from the pool on a hot summer day, really the best"). Anyway, point being, I'm making no claim that the phrases I'm sharing here are what actual poets or poetry aficionados would pick out from this collection. And I'm definitely doing violence to the ideas here by yanking the lines out of context. So if you like these bits at all, you should definitely check out the full "Ghost County" volume (just $5 for the digital version).

Without further ado, then, the lines I particularly liked in
"Ghost County" by John McCarthy Click here to see the full post...
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Phrases I Liked: Danielle McLaughlin

Periodically I will read some short stories by a contemporary author and post a few of my favorite phrases from them.

This week's author is Danielle McLaughlin, who has published a dozen or more short stories in magazines and journals, winning a dozen or more awards along the way (numbers approximate). Her first book, a collection of short stories, will be published in 2015 by The Stinging Fly Press. McLaughlin, who lives in Cork and writes in what I’d call the Irish realist style, first came to my attention with her excellent story “The Dinosaurs on Other Planets” in The New Yorker. McLaughlin began writing in 2009, and is definitely a writer to watch.

Now for some phrases I really liked in her work ...
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Phrases I Liked: Brian Oliu

Periodically I will read some short stories by a contemporary author and post a few of my favorite phrases from them.

This week's author is Brian Oliu, who teaches at the University of Alabama and whose writing sits somewhere in between fiction and non-fiction, defying easy categorization. Lyrical non-fiction might be the least bad label for what he does. Better yet, go check out his website for yourself --- it's got a well-organized collection of his pieces and interviews, plus a nifty design to boot. Oliu was also the guest editor of SunDog Literature's recent "Games" issue, which is worth a read.

Now for some phrases I really liked in his work ...


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Phrases I Liked: Kathy Fish

Periodically I will read a few short stories by a contemporary author and post some of the phrases I particularly enjoyed.

This week's author is
Kathy Fish, a prolific writer of short fiction, especially flash fiction. She has served as the fiction editor for SmokeLong Quarterly and edited the "Best of the Web 2010" for Dzanc Books. Rumor has it that she once saved a puppy who was attacked by a dog. Go check out her website here for more about her, plus links to several dozen of her publications.

Now for some phrases I really liked in her stories ...
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Phrases I Liked: Berit Ellingsen

Periodically I will read a few short stories by a contemporary author, usually one relatively close to the beginning of their (published) writing career, and post a few favorite phrases.

The author in this case is
Berit Ellingsen, who does a good job of describing herself on her website here, which means I don't have to.

Now for some phrases I really liked in her stories ...
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