FIRST BYLINES: In many respects it’s easier to publish an established, even an award-winning writer, than it is to publish someone for the first time.
The reason for this is simple. When a query or story crosses our desk by a known writer, we are usually familiar with their work, maybe personally familiar with the author. In other words, these authors have a head start in the publishing game.
Still, we cull through hundreds of submissions seeking that story, essay, comic, or poem by a writer — older or younger — who has a unique voice, and has yet to be published. In essence, we become partners with authors beginning their careers.
Most important, we seek to showcase new work that is provocative and beautiful, work that adds to the conversation between artists, scientists, essayists, columnists, bloggers, poets, and fiction writers who appear in the pages of Wild River Review.
When the hum and whir from my father’s woodshop
shook the kitchen floor boards and the bite
of saw blade into timber set my chair vibrating,
no cross look from my mother could keep me at my lunch.
Midway down the steps the scent of cedar
held me briefly between the light-filled kitchen
with its clang and clatter of pans and the subterranean
studio where hanging light bulbs cast halos
over runs of board and plank and beam, my father
in the middle, a storm of wood dust billowing
in the yellow cast light, in the din of saw and hammer.
Flecks rode the hairs of his arms ’til he flexed and lifted
each board to its carving place, then in silent cascade fell
in a dusting to the floor and as the hour hand swept
me up amid planed whorls and drilled spirals, the minutes
of childhood banked like the sawdust around his shoes.
Robbin Farr recently completed a year sabbatical from teaching high school and explored life without the ubiquitous mountain of papers to grade. After retrieving a few pages of incomprehensible poems wisely hidden in the back of a cabinet, she set off for a workshop at a wholly organic, macrobiotic, vegan retreat where she and fellow writers drank a lot of wine late at night. She is now, despite the unbelieving retorts from relatives, writing poetry in an MFA program at Queens University of Charlotte, which she insists is one of the four most meaningful events of her life.