Faye Rapoport DesPres

Writing news and notes

It’s been hot, hot, hot in the Boston area this week, and thunderstorms are scheduled to roll through at any moment. I hope they will take some of the humidity with them when they go. In the meantime, I wanted to check in to share some writing news and notes from friends, colleagues, and acquaintances.

If you haven’t figured out yet that I am a huge fan of Joy Castro and her writing, you probably haven’t been following my blog. But the truth is ever since I was lucky enough to work with Joy during my MFA experience, I have admired her not only as a writer but as a human being. And there is something satisfying — or perhaps vindicating? — about seeing someone who works so hard and who is so uniquely talented overcome major obstacles and achieve the success she so richly deserves. I just finished reading Joy’s new crime thriller, Hell or High Water, and I wasn’t disappointed. Whenever I read Joy’s work I feel like I’m attending my own personal master class in the craft.

But the news item is this, from Publisher’s Marketplace Deal News:

“Joy Castro’s HELL OR HIGH WATER, where a journalist takes it upon herself to investigate the 800+ sex offenders still missing three years after Katrina, optioned to producers Jane Startz of Jane Startz Productions and Aida Bernal of Spellbound Entertainment who have teamed up with sisters and producing partners, Zoe and Cisely Saldana from Saldana Productions, by Holly Frederick at Curtis Brown.”

Congratulations, Joy.

Friend and fellow Solstice MFA graduate Cindy Zelman also had some good news to report this week. Cobalt Review will publish Cindy’s essay, “Stuck in the Middle,” in their October print edition. The essay also is one of three finalists for the Cobalt Writing Prize. And as if that weren’t enough, a post from Cindy’s blog titled “What’s in a Butch’s Purse?” appeared on the new website Lesbian.com and was picked up by the Huffington Post. Cindy’s work is so honest and funny — she always blows me away with her courage and openness.

A book party celebrating the release of Clifford Garstang’s new book, What the Zhang Boys Know, is being held on August 22 at the Darjeeling Cafe in Staunton, Virginia. More information is available on Facebook here. Congratulations, Cliff!

Issue #23 of Prime Number Magazine is now online. This journal is always packed with interesting, absorbing work.

And finally, I’ll end with a couple of notes about my own work. Sugar Mule’s August issue, titled Women Writing Nature, is now online and features one of my short essays, “Morning and Night,” along with a lovely short essay by fellow MFA graduate Faye Snider titled “Predators.” And I was deeply honored when Robert Clark Young, the Creative Nonfiction editor of Connotation Press: An Online Artifact selected my essay “No One Watches the Old Lady Dance” as one of that publication’s best creative nonfiction pieces of the year (alongside nine other essays, including “A Smirnoff and Coke” by none other than Cindy Zelman!). These editor’s choice selections are printed in the August Retrospective Issue. Thank you so much, Robert Clark Young (and if you haven’t checked out his work, you must — I started with One Writer’s Big Innings.)

OK, I don’t want to inundate you — and that thunder is getting closer. Have a great week.


One thought on “Writing news and notes

  1. Cindy Zelman

    Really nice post, Faye. It’s been a good month for all of us. Thank you for including me and for the nice words. Thanks for spelling my name correctly, hahaha. Cindy