A Note to Supporters:
Thank you for supporting The Author's Journal of Inventive Literature. I deeply regret how long it has been since I managed to get an issue out. I remain committed to finishing the 3 remaining planned issues.
At this time, I am working on new covers, additional entries, and re-formatting the existing issues. I plan to re-publish them on Amazon and Apple as anthologies, in order to give our authors the best opportunity for exposure and royalties. For some time, I have been working alone while struggling with health problems, and the work is taking far longer than it should. Because my health is gradually improving, and because I have been gaining so many new skills in this process, I believe that at some point soon I will move beyond this period of frustration and the Academy will begin to function again.
I am also working on finishing the remaining issues. These will be published as anthologies, with beautiful covers and book binding, from day 1. For Issue III, I am working with an emerging author on a commissioned novelette to be included in the anthology. It has been difficult to find the kind of author and work that I really want to publish, and necessary to invest in cultivation. I believe the sort of writer I'm looking for is discouraged by the current artistic and moral climate, and is having as much trouble finding me as I am finding him. I find that he also has not been given the proper direction, training, and encouragement. Authors older than 50 remain my best source of publishable work, for the most part.
Everyone who subscribed will still receive the issues they paid for.
If you are an author who wishes to submit to this journal/anthology, feel free to do so, but please be aware that actual publication may be delayed for some time.
I am hoping to transition to an emphasis on a kind of work I am thinking of calling "slow literature." This is simply work that has been produced by a period of cultivation. It may be that the work itself, like this journal, has taken a long time to create. Or it may be that the writer himself is working after a period of exposure to the best literature, and can now produce quality work swiftly. Certainly, slow literature bears a deep connection to the literary pillars of traditional culture. At any rate, I am not looking for work that you would turn into your teacher or professor. It ought to bear the stamp of personal growth and private opinions and sentiments. I am also not looking for work that is distinctly contemporary. It should be hard to pin down when, exactly, the author wrote; except perhaps from certain details within the story or poem. Finally, it should exemplify an ability to handle the fundamentals of form, elements, and style.
Alana K. Asby,
How Do You Like Your Literature?
we like ours
WHAT ARE LITERARY INVENTIONS?
Literary Inventions are the made-up people, situations, objects, and worlds that make a story fictional.
WHAT MAKES LITERARY INVENTIONS GOOD?
Literary Inventions are good when they are interesting. While you read, Literary Inventions are plausible (seem like they could be real within the world of the story.) However, they are actually very different from real life as we experience it. They give us a feeling of having a new experience.
SHOULDN'T FICTION BE AS REALISTIC AS POSSIBLE?
All art is imitation. On the one hand, the artist must know what he is imitating and ensure that there is a recognizable resemblance. On the other hand, a perfect replica would not be true imitation; a perfect replica of a spoon would simply be a spoon. The artist must select which details to include, and how to represent them. This process of selection, and method of representation, creates artistic style. And artistic style creates an "artistic distance" between artistic reality and raw reality.
Writing is also art, so all these points apply in their own ways. A short story is a fictional imitation of people telling others about interesting incidents; a novel is an imitation of a biographical work. A character is an imitation of a person or of a type of person; and a fictional situation is an imitation of real-life situations. A poem is an imitation of speech - hopefully, a heightened imitation rather than a mere impression of everyday chit-chat or mental wanderings.
So no, fiction shouldn't be too realistic, because that leaves us with no style and no artistic distance. However, it should be realistic enough that the reader gets to enjoy the pleasure of that moment of recognition.
WHAT IS THE POINT OF LITERARY INVENTIONS?
The point of Literary Inventions is to delight the reader. It is also to make the writer money. Generally, both of those goals are accomplished when the writers himself enjoys what he is writing.
WHO INVENTED LITERARY INVENTIONS?
We know that for the ancient Greeks, Literary Invention made poetry what it was. The word "poet" actually means maker or inventor; and this word was originally applied to dramatists - storytellers who composed in verse. Because of these origins, we still seek poetry full of invention, and fiction full of poesy. We also seek subject matter, structure, and themes worthy of this ancient tradition.
WHAT MAKES THE INVENTIONS LITERARY?
Literary Inventions occur within literary fiction and verse. Plenty of fiction is inventive without being literary, and there's nothing wrong with that. Literary fiction maintains an elegant style and a high tone. Literary fiction traditionally serves people with a certain degree of learning and mental cultivation. Such people frequently need a more elevated aesthetic experience than genre fiction can provide. Finally, literary fiction traditionally restricts its themes, inventions, and subject matter to those considered fine and noble.
Vulgaris Media LLC, the publishing company which operates The Academy of Inventive Literature, is primarily focused on artistic "vulgarity" - in other words, on art which expresses a common humanity and its values. Acad Lit focuses on the furthest corner of this commonality - the edge between vulgarity and nobility. The urge to "look up" is universal. Acad Lit addresses the need to experience fineness and nobility, to aspire. Vulgaris Media's upcoming publications, by contrast, will focus on nearer and more comfortable regions, the artistic space where humanity "looks around."
However, both approaches to fiction have two things in common: a high valuation of human commonality; and a conviction that no story is interesting unless it shows us something extraordinary. The tension created by these two values is the intersection where we find our best stories and poems.