What Layne Is Stoked About

Book-to-Movie Adaptations:  There are two I’m frothing at the mouth about:  The Hunger Games and The Hobbit.  First, The Hobbit, duh.  Read that + LOTR when I was twelve and hooooo boy.  Second The Hunger Games.  Here’s the thing:  I grew up on/am still growing up on unconventional YA fantasy; Philip Pullman and Madeleine L’Engle rocked my world in early teenagerhood.  What I’d heard about The Hunger Games made it seem like it’d be comparably appealing – and it was.  Past the first book, though, it’s apparent that Suzanne Collins is terrific at moving forward an engrossing plot, but isn’t as able to 1) expand and develop setting details and 2) engage with philosophical issues directly relevant to her story as authors like Pullman and L’Engle, who’ve pulled off both with flying colors in their best-loved YA works.  Anyway, I’m interested to see what Collins’ world will look like onscreen and to cheer on Jennifer Lawrence as Katniss Everdeen as she shoots a bow and protects the people she loves like a total badass.

Books That Aren’t New But I Haven’t Read Yet And Therefore Am Looking Forward to Reading:  Design With X by Dean Young.  The Bee-Loud Glade by Steve Himmer.  Not Merely Because of the Unknown That Was Stalking Toward Them by Jenny Boully.  If I Falter at the Gallows by Edward Mullany.  Ayiti by Roxane Gay.  The Pajamaist by Matthew Zapruder.

Albums:  Why? is supposed to release their fifth album this year but info’s scarce.  Same deal for Sigur Ros.  I can’t think of other new things coming out at this second.  You should probably tell me a couple.

Events With Words:  The Big Big Mess reading tomorrow I’m doing with Tyler, Nate Slawson, and Christopher “ARMS” Newgent has me climbing the walls with positive feelings.  I can’t wait to pet Nick Sturm’s cat beforehand for good karma.  I can’t wait to yell things at people.  Also, mothafuckin’ AWP, which will be OH MY GOODNESS,  which will be my first time going, which will be YES and GOD CHICAGO BLOWS IN FEBRUARY but still YES.


What We’re Stoked About

In addition to the What Are You Stoked About? Section of the journal, we’re gonna post occasionally about what Layne and I are stoked about.

What Tyler Is Stoked About

Savages by The Bonesetters: So rad to finally see this album jangling against ears. Featuring former Stoked contributor, Ryan Rader, this album is nonstop memorable.

New issues of Diagram (especially this poem by Jenny Gropp Hess), Red Lightbulbs (especially these erasures by former contributor Nick Sturm and Sonnets by Seth Oelbaum), PANK’s Science and Fiction Issue (especially this piece by Mary Buchinger), Sixth Finch (especially this short poem by Ted Powers), and Jellyfish (featuring more goodness from Sturm).

Former Stoked contributor Sean Lovelace’s story in the My Protagonist is Matthew Salesses contest. 

BIG BIG MESS READING with myself, Layne Ransom, Christopher Newgent and Nate Slawson: This will be my first “out of my comfort zone” reading, so I’m really stoked to see how it goes. Plus, the other three readers are majorly rad!

Cheerwine: The soda of my youth! 8 years without you! You’re back in my pantry!

Cottage cheese and Applesauce: has officially passed Mac and Cheese as my favorite side dish; gotta be unsweetened applesauce and small curd/1% cottage cheese; gotta be mixed up.

Positive by Short Hand: Been waiting on these songs for a long time. Peter Davis does it all and WELL and for FREE. Run-DMC is YES.