December 15th, 2009 / 12:12 pm
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The December Collagist

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The new issue of The Collagist is out. Here’s what I think about that: This is a must read online journal. Every issue so far has struck me with how completely realized it is, how each piece — especially the stories and non-fiction — is smooth and well-thunk, creating a total, culturally relevant package. I mean, seriously, like, this journal is quickly surpassing big lit joints on the order of The Paris Review and becoming something that it seems all intelligent people (and not just writers) ought to care about. Also, it strikes me that The Collagist is calmly answering the question about how an online magazine ought to differ from a print publication. While much of the work there is, y’know, just a story that could easily appear on the page, they also feature a video book review by Anna Clark. Now the video even has some chintzy music to start the thing, and then incorporates images of the author and contextual pics interspersed with the reviewer talking about and reading from the book in question. Pretty cool. I like that they don’t rely on comments or links to make it hypertextual.

For a way into this month, check out Jennifer Howard’s three pieces.¬†And if you haven’t yet, pull your laptop into your bed tonight and read Matthew Derby’s wowzer, “Full Metal Jhacket” from October. It’s such a fun story.

Kudos and thanks to Matt Bell and Dzanc Books for creating such a smart venue for writers to aspire to, and for bringing such an authentic and well-conceived journal to the online scene. I honestly feel better about the world knowing it’s out there. It joins Robot Melon as my favorite source of lit in the electronic sphere.

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22 Comments

  1. bruiser brody

      expect matt to hit back hard re chintzy

      agreed though about the collagist’s greatness. the winning story is nasty.

  2. bruiser brody

      expect matt to hit back hard re chintzy

      agreed though about the collagist’s greatness. the winning story is nasty.

  3. Stu

      I like this.

  4. Stu

      I like this.

  5. Matt Bell

      Thanks for this post, Adam– I really appreciate you taking the time, and I’m glad you’re enjoying the magazine so much. To give credit where it’s due: Those video reviews are all Anna’s doing. She was doing them on her own blog before we asked her to join The Collagist, and that evolution in their style you’ve noticed is just Anna pushing herself. She’s a really fantastic reviewer, and I’m glad to have her as a constant contributor.

      Thanks again!

  6. Matt Bell

      Thanks for this post, Adam– I really appreciate you taking the time, and I’m glad you’re enjoying the magazine so much. To give credit where it’s due: Those video reviews are all Anna’s doing. She was doing them on her own blog before we asked her to join The Collagist, and that evolution in their style you’ve noticed is just Anna pushing herself. She’s a really fantastic reviewer, and I’m glad to have her as a constant contributor.

      Thanks again!

  7. alec niedenthal

      “it’s you” gave me such chills. i love the collagist a lot.

  8. alec niedenthal

      “it’s you” gave me such chills. i love the collagist a lot.

  9. Adam Robinson

      To be clear, I really like the chintzy music — especially because it’s chintzy. If it was some band that I really like I don’t think it would work. As it is I feel like I’m watching a newsbreak.

  10. bruiser brody

      here’s hoping robot melon starts taking subs again

  11. Adam Robinson

      To be clear, I really like the chintzy music — especially because it’s chintzy. If it was some band that I really like I don’t think it would work. As it is I feel like I’m watching a newsbreak.

  12. bruiser brody

      here’s hoping robot melon starts taking subs again

  13. bruiser brody

      well played, AR.

      looking fwd to a rematch of pool at some point

  14. bruiser brody

      well played, AR.

      looking fwd to a rematch of pool at some point

  15. Adam Robinson

      You name the time and the place.

      Though I can’t remember who won the last time. Probably me.

  16. Adam Robinson

      You name the time and the place.

      Though I can’t remember who won the last time. Probably me.

  17. bruiser brody

      ha, indeed, it was you. i played as well as i’ll ever play and still couldn’t seal the deal.

      we will make it happen soon. i’m hoping to come to the readings this saturday.

      incidentally, i’ve often been told my gifts are chintzy so i probably jumped on that word too quickly.

  18. bruiser brody

      ha, indeed, it was you. i played as well as i’ll ever play and still couldn’t seal the deal.

      we will make it happen soon. i’m hoping to come to the readings this saturday.

      incidentally, i’ve often been told my gifts are chintzy so i probably jumped on that word too quickly.

  19. Jennifer Howard

      Thanks so much for this, Adam. It’s an honor to be in with such good company–lots of great stuff in the December issue. (And Alec, I am thrilled you had that reaction–thank you.)

  20. Jennifer Howard

      Thanks so much for this, Adam. It’s an honor to be in with such good company–lots of great stuff in the December issue. (And Alec, I am thrilled you had that reaction–thank you.)

  21. bruiser brody

      indeed…all three pieces work so well together

  22. bruiser brody

      indeed…all three pieces work so well together