Nurturing the Pages


January brought a stunning selection of essays for Thread. Such gifts! Reading them is like being seated at a magnificent banquet, a glorious tasting of my favorite recipes. In less than three weeks, I found six beautiful expressions of the human heart that touch on, among other things, memory, geography and epiphany. I can’t wait for you to read them.

But wait, we must. Because as easy and swift as it would be to copy and paste these writers’ words into the site and insert the images I’ve taken or collected to highlight them, I’ve entered that time in publishing that’s unique to literary publications: edit mode.

That final edit is a reminder of why I’m doing this. Not only because a careful edit reduces misspellings and typos.  Sure, that’s a huge part of the process. But a good edit also brings out what’s best in a piece; it can make the words more true, encourage some of the words to actually pop off the page, to make the whole piece sing.

I’ve certainly posted lightly edited lines on Facebook, Twitter and sent quickly crafted emails. But I’m old school when it comes to publishing.  I think the time consuming, detailed nature of editing is what makes literary publications different from everything else. I think this is why we enjoy reading them. Well edited words leave a trace; a light, fragrant scent of being well nurtured like a fine, hot house plant.

So the Summer issue of Thread is slated for an early April release. The reading will take place in late April, tentatively scheduled for Wednesday, April 29th. (Place to be determined but it’s likely to be one of the two Curt’s Cafe locales in Evanston.)

Which means that submissions from here on out will be considered for the Fall 2015 or Spring 2016 issues. To find out more about what I’m looking for, go to the Submissions page of the Thread site. Stay current with news about issues and readings, as well as links to interesting articles about the creative process by liking Thread on Facebook.

In other related news:

Those of you who live in the Chicago area: Come on over to Max and Benny’s in Northbrook later this month for an evening devoted to the essay at the February Chicago Jewish Authors Literary Series. I’ll be reading selections from my book of essays, Views from the Home Office Window, and talking about Thread. The event is free. Monday, February 23rd at 7 pm.

Photograph by Ellen Blum Barish








Leafy Inspiration

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Photograph by Ellen Blum Barish. Copyright 2014.


Everywhere you look, we’re being framed in gold, orange and yellow. It’s my favorite quarter of the year where color takes the stage for a continuously changing runway walk and just the right amount of nip in the air keeps me perking along.  Autumn is the time to manifest dreams.

Which is exactly what I’m doing right now. Manifesting a lifelong dream to publish a literary magazine!

The design has been approved. Essays are in final edit. The online publication – featuring essays and photography – is currently under construction.  The launch is scheduled for early December. Watch this space for more on all of this in the weeks to come.

Wishes for leaves of inspiration to blow your way this season.