Nagoya Writes

January 6, 2008

Message from the prose editor by John J. Sapelak

Filed under: Essay,Issue: Dec 2006,Spelak — usbengoshi @ 8:27 am

This was my first attempt to edit work that has been written for purely creative purposes, and to usher them into a form that could be considered ‘final.’ The task is frightening, and probably feels a little bit like holding another person’s newborn child, but without permission. I’m thankful to the Nagoya Writes group for allowing me the chance to assist in editing this journal after attending only a few readings, having read a only sad handful of lousy poems.

Also, thank you for the writers for trusting me with their work.

Some more than others, the selections that have been ‘kidnapped’ for this issue have as much a connection to Japan as they do with the theme of ‘Heat.’ Japan’s attention-seeking summer months are a red-hot nuisance to assure a spot as the single most topic of every conversation. It is during these months that people are not merely living and being, but also coping with Japan’s inexorable heat.

I was asked to choose featured selection for prose, so without much hesitation, I chose ‘The Umbrella Maneuver,’ by Tom Bauerle. I feel that it stands out not only for its adherence to theme and skillful prose, but for its description of the noble and beautiful intentions of the Umbrella Man in an otherwise oppressively hot and sometimes ugly environment punctuated by extremes.

So, enjoy the atmospheres presented in these collected works, and may you find your own beauty in all of them.

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