Interview!

So, the literary journal that I manage (if you haven’t already heard about The Eloquent Orifice, check it out here) just got interviewed by Asian Books Blog.

If you’re interested in reading the interview (that really wasn’t a question), you can read it here.

(Will be back with more posts soon after publication of The Eloquent Orifice‘s upcoming issue. Stay tuned!)

Design – William Morris

Some midweek beauty to look at right here!

Melissa Lane

William Morris was a Victorian poet, novelist, designer and socialist closely associated with the pre-Raphaelite movement. I can’t remember when I first heard about his work, but I started becoming interested in it during my honours year, when I researched one of his contemporaries, the painter-poet Dante Gabriel Rossetti.

Chances are that even if you’ve never heard of Morris you’ve come across some of his designs: they seem to be in vogue at the moment and are sold on all sorts of products – postcards, letter sets, mugs, notebooks, colouring books, calendars – at bookstores. If you happen to have seen them, you’ll know that they’re intricate patterns featuring natural imagery and that many of them are medieval in style. It’s hard to tell exactly how many there are, given the countless edited versions that exist online, but the Victoria and Albert Museum states that Morris created over 50 wallpapers, while other websites…

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True Singapore Ghost Stories

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It’s no secret that I’m a firm believer in literature/the arts being able to shape society and create a collective identity/forge a collective bond.

It’s also no secret that I’m a big fan of horror literature, and even more so of Singaporean (Singapore pride!) horror literature.

As a kid growing up, my friends and I would share and swap our copies of different volumes of True Singapore Ghost Stories, written by Russell Lee. All of us—multicultural, multi-religiosity, multilingual us— shared (and still do) a common language, common understanding, common identity through this collective exchange of Singaporean ghost stories.

It’s more than just low-brow horror—it’s a genre that provides a common ground for a melting pot that is Singaporean society. It’s a means to share oral literature between cultures. It’s a means to share individual thoughts about the other side and then form a collective identity from a common understanding.

But Alfian Sa’at says it all here in his Facebook post on the subject:
https://www.facebook.com/plugins/post.php?href=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.facebook.com%2Falfiansaat%2Fposts%2F10154164954387371&width=500

What are your thoughts on this? 🙂

Till the next time!

Getting published

As a writer (and for many researchers and academics as well), getting your work published is one of the biggest goals we have (next to earning enough from our work to keep us going).

But why is it so hard to get published?

Often, publishers and commissioning editors have a specific work in mind, and our submitted work just isn’t what they’re looking for.

But at other times, the only thing standing between our manuscript and publication is us! What happens is that publishers/editors don’t notice our work because we haven’t put in that extra effort.

What’s this extra effort, though? It’s nothing that difficult, really!

  1. Good grammar
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    Trust me, there’s nothing more annoying to an editor sifting through a neverending pile of submissions than bad grammar.Unless bad grammar is a part of your character’s charm/non-charm, bad grammar should not litter your cover letter or your work.

    Bad grammar shows two things. One, you’re not interested in even getting someone to help proofread your work because you think the publication you’re submitting to is crap anyway. Or two, you’re uninterested in the value of good grammar.

    Either thing will send your submission straight out the door. Even if you have a great Pulitzer-winning idea.

  2. Submission guidelines
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    If you’re like that guy right there… Then you’re gonna have your submission rejected. I cannot stress this enough. Read. The. Submission. Guidelines.
    If they say include an exegesis, please don’t think you can get away with not writing one. If they say use the MLA format for citations and you don’t even attempt to try, they will happily reject your submission until you try (or at least ask, if you’re not sure how to). If they ask for an anonymised document for peer review, do it. And if they say they don’t accept certain genres in their submission guidelines, and you choose to submit a work in that very genre, then…
  3. Plagiarism
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    Just nope.

    This is perhaps the most important point of all.

    Do not plagiarise.

    Many of us don’t set out with the intention to “steal” someone else’s work, idea or expression. But we do. Simply because we have a faulty idea of what plagiarism really is.

    (Read more on what constitutes plagiarism, and how to avoid it, here at Purdue OWL’s excellent site.)

    The most common form of plagiarism I’ve encountered over my career is this: failure to cite your sources.

    What happens is that I receive a paper filled with sentences (whole sentences, mind you), back to back, directly copied from multiple sources. This is plagiarism.

    If you want to quote someone, quote them properly. Use the proper in-text citation format. Use quotation marks. Mention them.

    Capish?

    I hope this helps. Till the next time.

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Name update ;)

I’ve gotten married over the weekend, and I’m taking on my husband’s last name 🙂 So… just a heads up that I’ll be going by Geraldine Stallard now!

Cheers xo

Open call!

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So as you may know, I am part of a dedicated team at The Eloquent Orifice, an online literary journal publishing a variety of works, ranging from critical essays to creative works. And it’s that time of the year again when we put out an open call for submissions, in preparation for the upcoming issue!

I strongly encourage you to submit your work! All submissions are reviewed, and we provide writers with feedback about their submission. So what have you got to lose, right? 😉

After all, as Sartre puts it, we all write to be read; our work does not, and cannot, exist without being read.

Looking forward to your submission!

Cheers,
Geri

P/S: Don’t forget to check out our past issues and our submission guidelines!