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From the Editor’s Desk

Summer, 2013

I write these biannual notes in the spirit of collaboration.  They are, in a sense, a celebration of everything Ducts.org stands for:  giving you, our cherished readers, the opportunity to meet writers you might not meet elsewhere on the web or in print.  Today, I’ll break with tradition for a moment and inject a personal note into the proceedings.  At the end of May, 2013 I happily (and finally) received my MFA degree, in playwriting, from Queens College.  I was lucky I found a program and a group of folks that matched my own passion, while also believing strongly in the values of mutual support and good old-fashioned quality work.  What sustained me these many years, in large part, what nourished my love of words and writing, however, was Ducts.org and the many contributing writers and editors I’ve worked with and met.  Ducts.org has has helped shape me as a writer, editor, workshop participant, teacher and friend.  So today I’m offering my own personal thanks to all of you – writers and readers, critics and advocates – who make it possible for us to keep producing some of the best essays, fiction, memoir, poetry and art on the worldwide web.  I thank you for reading and for caring about words as much as I do.  And thank you for helping me achieve one of my life’s goals.

As many of you know, Ducts.org is part of an umbrella organization called New York Writers Resources, dedicated to helping writers everywhere.  Also under that umbrella are our two sister organizations.  Greenpoint Press has continued the tradition of publishing extraordinary books that are too often over-looked by mainstream publishers. Call of the Lark, by Maura Mulligan, and Fierce Joy, by Ellen Schecter, are memoirs that illustrate the triumph of the human spirit, and we are proud to have them on our bookshelf, along with other non-fiction books like We’re Not Leaving, the story of 9/11 First Responders, as told by Dr. Benjamin Luft, and gOld, interviews with men and women over the age of 70, as collected by Harry Getzov.  On June 10th, Linda Wolfe’s wonderful memoir, My Daughter, Myself, chronicling her daughter’s stroke and how it affected her family, will be published.  And in October, Greenpoint Press is proud to publish Starfish, by Patty Dann, a sequel to her critically acclaimed novel, Mermaids, which was made into a movie directed by Richard Benjamin and starring Cher, Winona Ryder and Christina Ricci.  Other things to look forward to in the fall are the publication of Ross Klavan’s novel, Shmuck!, which is based in part on the experiences of his father, the legendary radio personality, Gene Klavan (of Klavan and Finch,) and the next installment of The Best of Ducts.org, provocatively entitled, The Man Who Ate His Book. And we’re still aglow over one of our first books, Long Gone, Richard Willis’s memoir about growing up on a farm in Iowa during the Depression.  After being named as one of the most important books on the economy by Simon Constable in the Wall Street Journal online, the book has found new life and we are now in our third printing.  Visit us here at http://greenpointpress.org/

New York Writers Workshop continues to offer writing classes (fiction, non-fiction, poetry, screenwriting, playwriting, and children’s literature) every fall, winter, and spring at the Manhattan JCC. We also hold free classes at various branches of the New York Public Library, as well as online classes. In addition, NYWW holds Pitch Conferences every spring and fall, where writers from all over the U. S. (and other countries as well) workshop their book ideas and then pitch them to editors from leading publishers. Our track record of books pitched at the conferences and then published includes the recently-released Twerp, a young adult novel by Mark Goldblatt, and Chasing Chaos: My Decade In and Out of Humanitarian Aid, a memoir by Jessica Alexander that will be published in the fall. The fall 2013 pitch conferences will be held October 4-6 for Non-Fiction and November 1-3 for Fiction (for adults and children/young adults). http://newyorkwritersworkshop.com/category/conferences

We continue to raise money as part of our effort to bring you the best personal stories on the web.  If you enjoy the thought-provoking essays and memoirs, if you are captivated by our fiction, poetry and art, I urge you to donate whatever amount you can. Every little bit helps!

Thank you for visiting and please return again and again!

-Jonathan Kravetz, Editor-in-Chief

This issue of Ducts is made possible with a regrant from the Council of Literary Magazines and Presses, supported by public funds from the New York State Council on the Arts, a state agency.