Introducing New Team Members!

We have added some new team members to The Triangle!

Rose ChiangoRose Chiango
Rose has always been a reader and a writer. She will be getting her MLIS from the University of Pittsburgh. She graduated from Millersville University with a degree in English and currently works at a public library. She has been involved with The George Street Carnival Literary Journal, the Creative Writer’s Guild at Millersville University, and numerous other organizations. Rose will be writing book reviews for us and contributing literary commentary.

ashley-luisaAshley-Luisa Santangelo
Ashley-Luisa is currently an English and Spanish double major at Millersville University. She has been published in high school literary magazines as well as the 2014 issue of The George Street Carnival. She is a member of the Creative Writer’s Guild and looks forward to where her poetry and writing will lead her. Ashley will be joining the team as The Triangle intern during the summer of 2014, helping us to host and promote literary events in southcentral PA.

AJAJ Pritz
Aj is known as Aj, except at work (The Eden Resort) where he is known as Allen. His passion lies in his hometown community of Lancaster, where he lives with his dogs, Bailey and Dusty. He loves satire and sci-fi, themes which figure prominently into his self-published collection of writing, “The Loss of Despair and Other Fleeting Feelings.” AJ will be helping us to promote Triangle activities in and around Lancaster. Here’s what he had to say about one of our most recent events, Poetry Aloud 2014:

“By all official accounts I was at Poetry Aloud 2014… By unofficial accounts, however, I was in a sort of tunnel-vision, taking everything in. I was encompassed by everyone’s creativity and confidence. Flattery aside, if you could not make it, you missed a good time. These events confirm that I am part of a fantastic community of beautiful minds. It was hard not to jump out of my seat, go home, sit at my laptop, and start writing what was on the tip of my tongue. Moment by moment my thoughts changed like the speakers at the podium. The readings made me come to a new conclusion: having your voice heard (at any age) by random people in a dimly-lit room is a religious experience. The shaky moments afterwards, when the reader sits down next to one of their friends or mothers, are ones of absolute refreshment. Even now, as I’m sitting in this local establishment drinking my lager and writing this, I want tono I need toread some of my own poetry aloud to another patron. And why should I feel embarrassed to do so? It is my passion! If you are like me and have the occasional writers block, I challenge you to go and read one of your poems or short stories to a person who is new to you. Take back what is yours and revel in satisfaction as you finish your last words. I will not be missing the sign-ups for the next Triangle event. I only hope that you will share that experience with me and read by my side.”

Please join us in welcoming these new team members to The Triangle!

BUT IS IT LIT? // Seems Like There’s A Show Every Night Album Booklet

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This article marks the first in a new series here at The Triangle. We’ll be collecting local ephemera, writing a brief list of our thoughts, and putting forth the age-old question: “BUT IS IT LIT?” Parameters for what we review are any of the following (if something meets all three points, ding ding ding you win): 1) we love it because it’s funny, weird, and awesome; 2) it’s a local thing; and/or 3) it’s something we want to promote and support but it’s not traditional literature (or is it?).

First up: The record insert/zine/booklet that comes with each copy of the new local compilation album, Seems Like There’s A Show Every Night, released by Greg Knowles and Chumpire records. Many of the bands featured on the album are associated with DIT Lancaster (DIT stands for do-it-together), a collective which aims to tighten the local independent music community. This record is a sampling of Lancaster area punk music. There’s everything from crooning emo revival, to chaotic metal, to simple low-fi ukulele.

Seems Like There’s A Show Every Night
Chumpire Records, 2014
16 pages, saddle-stitch staple-bound, softcover, full-color
$10.99 at Mr. Suit Records

  1. Inside the front cover is a heartfelt note from Mike (Mr. Suit himself)  that’ll make any local (associated with the DIY/Do-It-Yourself music culture or not) proud to call him or herself a Lancastrian. It’s a concise chronicle of his moving to Lancaster, discovering the music scene, and watching it grow. He writes, “Best of all, this isn’t entirely the work of a single mover-and-shaker, but of an entire community…”  I feel the echoes of that sentiment here in the literary community as well. This opening is a perfect primer for the album to come, honest enough to feel real, and not so sentimental that you feel like puking.
  2. The booklet is filled with pages of lyrics. Each band designed their own page and sent it to local graphic designer and DIY-affiliate, Shannon Yordy. The result is an interesting chapbook of sorts, with lyrics, drawings, and designs unique to each band’s disposition and genre.  Notables are:
    1. the repetition in the lyrics to “Boxing with a Ghost” by Chalmers: “Nothing solid/nothing landed….Something solid/something landed.” The use of “landed” as an ambiguous part of speech is really cool, leaving it up to the listener to take it as a past-tense verb or an adjective.
    2. the Internet Poetry inspired (or so it seems) image macro used for A Band Named Craig‘s page. Their post-ironic, absurdist approach to the lyrics page comes across as humorous, self-aware, and contemporary.
    3. the simple emo-confessionalism lyricality of Placeholder‘s “I Feel”. Vocalist Brandon Gepfer writes, “Walked out my bedroom/there’s no one home/Walked down to the liquor store/found my friends.” This is pop-punk all grown up: still relate-able, but a little less than positive (one might argue, much more real.)
    4. first the title (“I am the meteor that killed the venusaurs”), and then the alliterative, other-worldly word salad scrawled on Row‘s lyrics page. Here’s an excerpt: “It’s all bloodied/the ketamine/it aint pretty/how’d I seem at 1:30/a liquored corpse kissing kerosene”
  3. I also dug the closing afterword by Greg Knowles, the man behind the local fanzine, Chumpire. Knowles also recorded many of the tracks on this album. He’s tirelessly and selflessly worked to record local bands forever, for free, for really nothing but some gas money. Greg’s summation on the last page of the booklet is again a genuine tale of his experience with DIT Lancaster and the underground music scene in our community.
  4. Overall, the booklet takes about 10 minutes to read. It’s beautiful and well thought-out. It’s a surprisingly treasure-filled addition to the fine compilation record it comes with. Kudus to all who were involved in it’s inception and execution.

Pick up a copy and tell us what you think in the comments: IS IT LIT??

Swandive Publishing Takes the Leap this Friday

 

Scranton, PA Scranton Book Release Party Scheduled!bookmakers,  Swandive Publshing Company will be debuting their new (and first!) literary offering this Friday, April 11th, at the AFA Gallery in Scranton, PA. The book is called Everyday Escape Poems, and it’s an anthology comprised of work by nine regional and local writers, including Barbara DeCesare, Jim Warner, and Dawn Leas. The book is officially released this Friday, at 7pm. The event is free, and there is more information here, as well as on our calendar.

Swandive Publishing Company is run by Eric and Amy Wilson. They founded the project last fall with the intention of publishing full books of poetry. Everyday Escape Poems is their first release, and we’ve got a copy. We’re very excited about this new endeavor for our friends up in Scranton, so we’ll be making the trek up north to help them celebrate.

Eric Wilson and Barbara DeCesare, who are both published in the anthology, will be here in Lancaster on June 11th for a reading. 

For more information about the book, and the publishers themselves, check out their website.  Also. look for a review of Everyday Escape Poems here at the Triangle in the near future.

Visual Interview: John Mortara

Visual Interviews are where we send a writer a disposable camera and a list of ideas to photograph along with a few short questions. Once the camera is mailed back, we develop the photos and arrange them collage style to give you a unique glimpse into the life of the writer we’ve selected. Check out past Visual Interviews and stay tuned because we have Elisa Gabbert, Jim Goar, and Lindsay Hunter coming up over the next couple of months!

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John Mortara is a poet, writer, designer, and indie publisher. He is the creator of voicemail poems and has a full length poetry collection forthcoming from yesyes books (‘some planet’ February 2015). Series sponsored by Tellus360 and compiled by Erin Dorney and Tyler Barton.

Photographs and text by John Mortara: a) John Mortara biking (dangerously); b) John Mortara’s reading nook; c) a disappointing scenic area; d) a diner in New Jersey where John Mortara used to get grilled cheese with bacon and tomato and it made him feel ok; e) John Mortara reading at Northhampton Poetry after everyone yelled at him to use the flash and then he had to figure out how to use the flash; f) John Mortara on some highway in America; g) John Mortara with an icicle (friggin lunatic?); h) John Mortara biking (again, dangerously).

Keeping up with the Triangle in April

April is National Poetry Month and there are a TON of literary events happening in Lancaster, York, and Harrisburg. Check out our printable calendar and our online calendar for an idea of what’s going on.

This coming weekend is huge for us at The Triangle. Come hangout!

1957644_823965710951550_1843754692_oOn Thursday, April 3, Erin and I will be opening for poet and professor at Yale, James Berger at The MakeSpace. The reading is FREE and starts at 7 PM. We’ll be reading some of our collaborative writings (including our Ikea Poems, which you can preview over at the Onthology/audio project, curated by Christophe Cassamassima).

Friday, April 4th is Poetry Aloud, a twice-yearly spoken word series that I’ve been organizing for over the last three years with the help of the Franklin and Marshall College Philadelphia Writer’s House. Jon Sands, an incredible poet from NYC, is our feature, with F&M professor and poet Amanda Kemp as our special guest. There’s a fully booked list of readers for the open-mic reading as well. This event is FREE and it will begin at 6:30 PM at the Ware Center. It’s First Friday in Lancaster, and the kickoff for National Poetry Month.

On Saturday we’ll be hosting a FREE workshop at the Lancaster Public Library. This will be a 90-minute series of writing exercises, prompts, and sharing. The goal is to get you writing. If you need a little push, if you want to break that writer’s block, or simply write with the company, comfort, and inspiration of fifteen other creatively-minded people…this could be the perfect Saturday afternoon activity for you. 1 PM, Lancaster Public Library on Duke Street.

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Later this month, on Thursday, April 17th, we’ll be kicking off the Fear No Lit Reading Series at Dogstar Books (an every-other-month reading, featuring one national writer and an open-mic reading) with poet and storyteller Michael Czarnecki. This event, as you may have guessed, is FREE. The next installment of the series will be in June, with Barbara DeCesare and Eric Wilson from Swandive Publishing.

In conclusion, April is a crazy, exciting, and fully-booked month for the literary arts in our area, and we can’t wait to see you.

8-Week Flash Fiction Workshop in Lancaster!

hokLooking for a workshop series that’ll sharpen your short-fiction skills? Looking for chance to gain perspective, advice, and feedback on your work? Looking to simply craft some new short pieces? Free Wednesday evenings this Spring?

The Lancaster Literary Guild may have the perfect opportunity.

Flash Fiction (typically considered to be works shorter than a thousand words) is not only increasingly popular and innovative, but widely published and relished by readers everywhere. As communication quickens, stories shorten, and meaning becomes more direct and powerful, flash fiction finds wider and wider audiences. Just check out sites like Monkeybicycle, NANO Fiction, or a majority of the stories published in any literary journal that wants to up its number of fiction pieces, while keeping its page numbers reasonable.

Instructor Jeremy Hauck (Temple professor, fiction writer) is teaching 8 workshops at the lit guild’s building on Lime Street. He’s been published in many of the journals that are hungrily looking for this brief, punchy prose. He’ll share experience and knowledge of the form while using examples, critique circles, and read-alouds to help participants craft and hone three original flash fictions. And, if you’re more inclined towards longer work, writers are welcomed to use the class to develop scenes and characters for more fleshed out stories or novels.

We’ll be there, and we’re truly looking forward to it. Don’t miss out on this unique chance to study fiction-writing with a regional professional here in Lancaster. Classes are 165$ bucks, for 8 sessions. They begin THIS COMING WEDNESDAY, the 26th of March, and go through May 14th. Email jeremyehauck [at] gmail [.com] for more information or to sign up.

LitMore + The Community Poetry Library

LitMore Community Poetry Library Christophe Casamassima

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Last week The Triangle paid a visit to LitMore, a non-profit organization working to connect and encourage literary endeavors in Baltimore, MD. Housed in a beautiful old rectory next to a church-turned-school, LitMore hosts a Community Poetry Library, literary workshops and readings, an office co-op, writers studios, internships and multi-media performance space.

One of our favorite parts of the space was the Community Poetry Library, where Doug Mowbray (of twentythreebooks) and Christophe Casamassima (of Furniture Press Books) have been collecting small press titles including full-length books, chapbooks, pamphlets, broadsides, ephemera, and hand-made objects. With over 3,000 titles (and growing—we had to move piles of lit in order to sit down on the in-library loveseat), the collection is the largest of its kind in the state of Maryland. Casamassima hopes to catalog the collection by the end of the summer, a process which will require no small amount of effort, as many of these one-of-a-kind items do not have barcodes containing publisher information. This requires a volunteer to input data (publisher/press, date of publication, number of pages, author info, etc) by hand for each individual item. However, once the collection is cataloged, LitMore visitors will be able to search for particular authors and easily locate their works on the shelves or within archival boxes.

We were invited to record some collaborative poems (“You Can Do It All Yourself But You Don’t Have To: The Ikea Poems”) for Casamassima’s project Onthology/audio. During our visit, Casamassima also introduced us to Normals Bookstore, a collectively-run mecca featuring used books (including tons of local, indie, and small press lit), records, and more. After a quick lunch at The Blue Moon Cafe and walk around Fell’s Point, we headed back to Lancaster filled with inspiration and admiration for Charm City. If you’re going to be in Baltimore, be sure to check out LitMore—we promise you won’t regret it.

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