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NFG – Writing with Attitude - 2004

Formatted like a slick cosmopolitan magazine, this quirky, subversive offering out of Canada includes comics, poems, art work, fiction, and essays, all of which were weird, humorous, or some combination of the two. They also feature sci-fi and horror genre work. One of their stated goals is to include writers from all over, and it seems they succeeded, as I count five countries represented on two pages at one point. As a lover of literary comics, I have to say my favorite comic from this issue was that depicting a tyrannosaurus rex’s search for God, which was attributed to a web site www.qwantz.com and a Canadian author named Ryan North. Of the poems, I particularly liked the prose poem “She Tried to Teach Me Poetry” by Karina Sumner-Smith, which begins:

Two in the afternoon, looking at her free verse hair, the way she dresses in foreign poetic form. She says: let us feel safe in this problematic time, clinging to the ink-stained tangle and argues formal religion, industry versus agriculture. Let’s call it literature.

The editors also printed the winners of their “69ers” contest – little flash fiction or prose poem bits of writing with only 69 words. An interesting entry into a sometimes too-homogenous field of literary work. [Single issue $5.95. www.nfg.ca] – JHG

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Review Posted on November 30, 2004
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