Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Winners from Words in Art


Winners from The Creative Coalition


Friday, February 20, 2015

Twitter Tales Art Component

In the September 10th post, "It Takes a Village: A Storytelling Experiment Utilizing Social Media" (http://inscribingindustry.blogspot.com/2014/09/it-takes-village-storytelling.html), you read about the origins of our thrilling Twitter Tales activity, its participants and saw 23 of its posts. Now, you will read about the dynamic visual arts component involving the digital collage site of Polyvore (a social community with users spanning the globe and as of May 2014, about 20 million unique visitors each month). A contest was held between two art groups for two weeks, during which time artistically inclined users were encouraged to create art sets inspired by the first eleven individual Twitter posts from the story.

The idea was simple. We had our wonderful group of emerging and established authors, skilled storytellers, instructors and professionals that had generated the words, the engaging content from the 1st eleven posts. Having been on Polyvore for a number of years, I knew of the immense, diverse artistic talents of users, their incredible abilities for allegory and creative, soulful interpretation. 1+1=WOW. Yet we, I, couldn't have anticipated how amazing the results would be. The results from this synergistic combination of talented writers and amazing artists were nothing short of awe-inspiring and the reaction from entrants around the world was profound. Well over 100 Polyvore art sets were entered with enthusiasm, creative passion, emotion and dedication.

Contest entrants chose individual posts that resonated with them and created artistic digital collages based on the words. We had a number of instances where entrants ended up making one set for each post. They created powerful imagery that brought our story to new life through varied perspectives across continents and age demographics, showing the significance of unity—art and words, writers and artists, creative mediums and people combined. You'll get to read more about the activity and some of the participating writers' great reactions to the art component in upcoming posts.  

Together, we—writers, artists and the readers commenting/supporting along the way—are all making a bit of history here that has implications for the future of art and writing in the digital world. Thank you for coming on this adventure. (Note: Stay tuned for the final Twitter post! We will be inviting everyone to vote from amongst three options!)

What you will see below are listed winning contest entrants with links to their winning sets (we also plan to have separate blog posts with slideshows of the sets). Some entrants have provided statements/quotes or replies to questions about the activity. The two groups the contest ran in were The Creative Coaltion and Words in Art. Deep gratitude is extended to group moderator, Jennifer Glass Wright (@colbysma) for the use of the groups during the two week period, her assistance, enthusiasm, support, time and insight. The sets were carefully judged according to how they reflected the posts they corresponded to. It was a terribly difficult task to do the judging. There were so many fabulous works of art made! In each group, there would typically be one set chosen to represent each individual Twitter post. As there are 12 winners to a group and there were only 11 posts to choose from, there were a few posts that had two winning sets. Again, sets from the two different groups were chosen based on how we felt they best illustrated the words of the individual posts (not limited to style or literal interpretation). We honor all of the entrants and also have collections of other entries we admired.

Enjoy reading the perspectives of our winners and seeing their work!

From The Creative Coalition group:

@sisilem (set: http://www.polyvore.com/all_metal/set?id=130172967&lid=3857202)
@blue2mato (set: http://www.polyvore.com/find_lock_key_fit/set?id=130230947&lid=3857202) 

@incogneato (Joyce B.): (set: http://www.polyvore.com/lepetit_protector/set?id=129109860&lid=3857202)
"My art is formed predominantly by the natural world along with fantasies of possibility."

~How did you find this contest to be unique in comparison to other contests?

The writer's sentences stimulated a creative interpretation, unlike contests where the subject matter is named and defined.

~What did you enjoy most about the concept of being inspired by the words to make art sets that represented your interpretations of what you read?

Most of the writings were scintillating suggestions of a plot. The most attractive ones remained abstract, giving the artist full creative license.

~Did you feel more invested/interested in the story and what happens in it by being able to participate/respond to it through art?

That is a difficult question. Often reading is a highly intimate process, where one is given an opportunity to see into the author's thought processes and experience. It is like a pact, based on a premise of anonymity, where the writer is allowed full reign of expression. As such, the reader also interprets the writing based on his own ideas and experience. I have not experienced participatory
literature and art in the manner you suggest.

~Would you like to see/enter more contests like this?

Yes! I think this was stimulating for the artists as a group.

@mdesigns2012 (set: http://www.polyvore.com/pictures_worth_thousand_words--the_shield/set?id=129269644&lid=3857202)

@ellen-hilart: (set: http://www.polyvore.com/old_memories_haunt_me/set?id=129241300&lid=3857202)
"What a fascinating concept. You gave us all a reason to think out of the box and create such interesting sets. I'm proud to have my entries in this collection. As I said before, this was a most interesting, intelligent and challenging contest. This story is getting very exciting. I can't wait to read more and see the fusion of art and literature!"

~How did you find the contest to be unique in comparison to other contests?

I thought the integration of the polyvore contest and results [winners] being included in The Write Place such a great innovation. This concept has made being on Polyvore and creating, in my case many years (six), a validation of all that I have done here. I feel like I am being acknowledged for the creations I have made. Thank you for that!!!

~What did you enjoy most about the concept of being inspired by the words to make art sets that represented your interpretation of what you read?

Trying to make the visual fit the words in an abstract way without being completely literal. That was a real challenge to me, being the traditionalist that I am.

~Did you feel more invested/interested in the story and what happens in it by being able to participate/respond to it through art?

Yes. I love to read books and magazine articles, but sometimes when I'm reading instructions, manuals, etc. I tend to skip over much of the text. In this case, I had to actually read the entire excerpts to know how to proceed with the artwork. So, yes, I was more invested.

~Are you interested in following this story to read more of it and/or learn more about the writers?

Yes, I'd love to see how it ends. And, of course, would love to know more about the writers.

@niwi: (set: http://www.polyvore.com/2237_my_mind_raced/set?id=129738503&lid=3857202)
"This was one of the most interesting contests--what a fantastic adventure. I'm very happy I had time to take the challenge."

~How did you find this contest to be unique in comparison to other contests?

I love words, I love to read and I'm amazed about how different people can visualise events, places and characters out of a novel or a short story in so many different manners. I loved this contest because it allowed us to express and materialise what the words put into our minds.

~What did you enjoy most about the concept of being inspired by the words to make art sets that represented your interpretations of what you read?

I loved that I had to pick up clues out of the texts to guess about the characters, environment, era, country, etc... I loved the fact the story took place in these interwar years, sending us to the golden age of detective stories and Hollywood film noirs.

~Did you feel more invested/interested in the story and what happens in it by being able to participate/respond to it through art?

Yes, probably because for once I was allowed to express what this text evoked to me in a visual way, and collage is a very specific means of expression. You have to cope with what you find to express yourself; it is not like when you are able to draw or paint exactly what you have in mind.

~Are you interested in following this story to read more of it?

I'd love to know what happened to Mark, indeed, and learn more about these women in the story. 

@gabrielle01: (set: http://www.polyvore.com/how_could/set?id=129376279&lid=3857202)
"I enjoyed the challenge very much and I like the new postings of the story on Twitter."

@ausie34 (Kris Rozelle): [note- though this account on Polyvore is no longer active and as such their set is not available to view, they did a wonderful job and were indeed amongst the chosen winners]: 

"I'm an artist, poetry writer and art teacher for kids. Ever since I was five I have painted, drawn and used my gifts in art for others."

"Let me just say how honored I was to be a part of such a beautiful undertaking; thank you for your soul-wrenching effort putting together such a heart and soul gripping work readers will be transported in.  When I first came upon the contest, I thought now there it is...all of my polyvore art is 'a picture worth a thousands words,' if you only spend the time to see the hidden meanings. I have always been told my art is a picture with many stories, but to illustrate others' work was an incredible experience."

~How did you find this contest to be unique in comparison to other contests?

This contest tied into the notion all art is based upon; a picture being worth a thousand words and illustrating a story; but it came alive through the illustrations, extrapolations and interpretations of others. In essence we got to peek into the minds of others as we all interpreted the same written words. This contest was both powerful and gripping!

~What did you enjoy most about the concept of being inspired by the words to make art sets that represented your interpretations of what you read?

For me personally, most of my work is inspired by music, which is a series of lyrics on a page. Likewise I was inspired by the words of the story for the same reason—they were powerful and heart-gripping and I wanted to illustrate the story because I felt connected to it.

~Do you feel that written works are made more powerful by being combined with visual art?

Definitely, ALWAYS! The more senses one can capture the better! Adding a visual component to TwitterTales made them come more alive! Art breathed more life into those literary words and gave them wings to fly in our imaginations.

~Did you feel more invested/interested in the story and what happens in it by being able to participate/respond to it through art?

The writing hooks you in and of itself, but the art takes you to a whole new level and it becomes more alive. I would have been interested and invested either way.

@ritadolce: (set: http://www.polyvore.com/picture_is_worth_thousand_words/set?id=129831971&lid=3857202
"The contest was unique and challenging. I have it heard said,'that a picture speaks a thousand words'! Written works are made more powerful when visual art is added. I would like to see more contests like this."

@jennifer (Jennifer Mayr): (set: http://www.polyvore.com/as_silent/set?id=129051472&lid=3857202)
"I'm a science teacher at a boarding school, looking for artistic outlets wherever I can find them."

~How did you find this contest to be unique in comparison to other contests?

The challenge of working with someone else's story appealed to me, merging two art forms.

~What did you enjoy most about the concept of being inspired by the words to make art sets that represented your interpretations of what you read?

The words were vivid, yet mysterious, since I didn't know the entire story.

~Do you feel that written works are made more powerful by being combined with visual art?

I still love illustrated books. Maira Kalman and Peter Mendelsund have the right idea.

@leotajane (Jane Donnelly): (set: http://www.polyvore.com/answers/set?id=130162740&lid=3857202)
"This was the opposite of how I create so it was a bit difficult, however looking back, I had a great time.  It was a learning experience and challenge that I appreciated the opportunity to be a part of with all my Polyvore artist community members."

~How did you find this contest to be unique in comparison to other contests?

This contest was unique in comparison to other contests by the fact we were given prompts about what we needed to portray in our sets. A story. Most contests do not have a narrative that continues as you create. The parameters of most contests involve using colors, a designer, an emotion, or  express a particular event, feeling or sentiment.

~What did you enjoy most about the concept of being inspired by the words to make art sets that represented your interpretations of what you read?

We had words to use specifically and I enjoyed trying to incorporate these words with the images by using everyday objects to mesh the words into the piece, like visual metaphors.

~Do you feel that written works are made more powerful by being combined with visual art?

Depending on the story, what medium, what media, and how it's presented. I have been involved with artists who have asked me to create art for poetry written specifically for the art piece.

~Did you feel more invested/interested in the story and what happens in it by being able to participate/respond to it through art?

Yes, I felt responsible for giving the readers an idea of what is happening by my work of art.

Blog: leotajane.blogspot.com/

@aunt-kiki: (set: http://www.polyvore.com/had_to/set?id=128806317&lid=3857202)
"By day I am a freelance editor, but my real passion is art & art history. I do consider myself an amateur artist who dabbles in a variety of mediums including: poetry, photography, collage, mixed media (a la Polyvore). I feel most alive when I am creating and feel like I am wasting away if I don't express myself artistically in some form or another every day."

~How did you find this contest to be unique?

I liked trying to come up with a set that conveyed a few words and make it interesting and artistic, keeping true to the writer's intent while staying true to my own artistic vision & aesthetic. So that it's simultaneously theirs & mine, if that makes sense.

From the Words in Art group:

@incogneato (set: http://www.polyvore.com/an_element_decline/set?id=129329786&lid=3857145)

@tinky5870 (Tina Shearin): (set: http://www.polyvore.com/tick_tock-find_lock/set?id=129014776&lid=3857145)
"I'm a 40-something woman who believes in possibilities. A woman who has seen, for herself, that fate can pluck you up from one circumstance and plunk you right down in the middle of your heart's desire. If only you believe."

"I'm drawn to art because I think it's a unifying medium. When we look at a piece of art that speaks to us, we are not only seeing into the soul of the artist, but into our own, as well. We are all humans, struggling on our dark days and basking in the light of our good days. Art, more than anything else, in my opinion, can reflect the vast array of emotions that each and every one of us experience. The
result? We know we aren't alone in the human condition. Someone else feels what we feel, sees what we see and has put it out there for ALL of us.

However, I found that the story came alive to me (due to the intriguing plot and brilliant contributions to the story-line) and so I needn't have worried--it just came about naturally :) Thank you for this opportunity to grow, learn and express myself."

~How did you find this contest to be unique in comparison to other contests?

I found that having a story already evolving was an entirely unique experience. With other contests, you have a theme or idea to leap from, but in this contest, you were drawing from someone else's imagination, so to speak. I found myself hoping that my set would reflect how that particular writer saw that scene in his or her own mind.

~Do you feel that written works are made more powerful by being combined with visual art?

Yes, I do. Some people prefer to be free to visualize the story in their own way, but others are benefited by visual aids, which results in their being drawn more deeply into the story.

~Are you interested in following this story to read more of it and/or learn more about the writers?

Yes, I'd love to follow it and intend to. I would also very much enjoy learning more about the writers.

@purplepandora (set: http://www.polyvore.com/mourn_later/set?id=128944683&lid=3857145)
@artfreak04 (set: http://www.polyvore.com/things_to_be_remembered/set?id=129519250&lid=3857145)
@kikilea (set: http://www.polyvore.com/untitled_1087/set?id=130045733&lid=3857145)
@niwi (set: http://www.polyvore.com/2238_how_bizarre/set?id=129761043&lid=3857145)
@eileen-d-mooncat (set: http://www.polyvore.com/picture_worth_1000_words_beginning/set?id=129340610&lid=3857145)

@chellcouture (Michelle Elsmore): (set: http://www.polyvore.com/right_then_it_hit_me/set?id=129522906&lid=3857145)
"I found it a great pleasure to participate in the contest. To be honest, I loved every minute creating for this contest and I could do it all over again. I find art very relaxing, it's like speaking without actually saying anything, you can express so much through art. Creating art to go with a story had me creating for hours to try and get the perfect theme to go with the words; it's like when you're reading a favorite novel... You always create the pictures and characters in your head. I really can't express how much I enjoyed taking part. I had so much enthusiasm, once I started I couldn't stop. It's amazing how many creations you can actually come up with for a few words..."

~How did you find this contest to be unique in comparison to other contests?

I felt you had more variation than it being a certain theme; having the words to go by in the creation made it feel like my own little movie in pictures.

~Are you interested in following this story to read more of it and/or learn more about the writers?

Yes, I found the story very interesting. Would love to read more of it, and it would be great to learn about the writers.

@my-time-is-now (Joeanne Meyes): (set: http://www.polyvore.com/red_flags/set?id=128829441&lid=3857145)
"I'm a 50 something year old woman who was able to legally marry the woman I love last May. I love to restore furniture, write (poetry, poems & stories), photography and of course Polyvore."

~How did you find this contest to be unique in comparison to other contests?

I found the competition unique because it made me think of the writer and how I might interpret their words. That was something different and challenging.

~What did you enjoy most about the concept of being inspired by the words to make art sets that represented your interpretations of what you read?

What I enjoyed most about the competition was that there were so many different kinds of ways you could do a set to interpret the words. Refreshing!!!

~Do you feel that written works are made more powerful by being combined with visual art?

I hadn't really thought about it before, but with this competition, when I saw all the different kinds of ways the words were interpreted by people's sets, I was amazed; and I do now believe that in this case, the pictures (sets) did make the words more potent and delivered the messages well.

~Did you feel more invested/interested in the story and what happens in it by being able to participate/respond to it through art?

In a strange way I did feel more invested in the storyline. Maybe because I had the chance to participate and therefore felt more invested. I have looked in on the story a number of times checking where and how the story line was progressing.

Thanks for a unique and most enjoyable, not to mention challenging, endeavor.


@beggarmagik: (set: http://www.polyvore.com/untitled_2933/set?id=129953291&lid=3857145)
"The illustrations can enhance the author's vision. The words become clearer...the focus stronger. Gives a delightful added touch."

@texaspinkfox (set: http://www.polyvore.com/oh/set?id=130286293&lid=3857145)
@leotajane (set: http://www.polyvore.com/get_truth/set?id=130234247&lid=3857145)

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Divining the Prime Meridian~ Second Book Giveaway of the Season!



Our first book giveaway of the season heralded the arrival of the Art & Soul issue, kicking off its theme, spurring written discussion of art. This second giveaway, following the issue's release, involves discovery, observations and the sharing of perspectives.

Divining the Prime Meridian, the latest poetry collection by Carol Smallwood, looks at the world through the poet's perspective, interchanging lenses to view everything from the seemingly small, intimate everyday facets, to the larger natural, geographic scopes. The collection includes seventy-five free verse and formal poems. These are divided into the following sections: Domestic Life, The Natural World, Health and Welfare, Geography, The Mental Realm, Cities, Seasons. With a substantial span of subjects, the poetry often seeks to elevate the mundane through the poet's attached significance and insight. Her poem, "Diaries" captures the need to pin down thoughts, the simulated sense of control attainable on the blank, unlined page. Other poems elevate heavy subject matter with vivid imagery and a steadying sense of the tangible.

For this book giveaway, we ask you to discover, observe and share your personal insights/perspectives regarding the Art & Soul issue. As we've ventured to the edge of the map in uncharted territory with this issue, we want you to divine the significance of its elements as pertaining to you. You may comment below or send us a message via our feedback form on the Feedback & Questions page of the website about what facets (whether stories or poems you could relate to your life experiences, essays/interviews/art that inspired) spoke to you. We've already received great insights in the past few weeks and through the giveaway, we encourage more! The winner's name will be randomly drawn from amongst sent in and posted comments received within the next three weeks. We will then contact the winner and have the book sent to them.

Divining the Prime Meridian is available via Amazon and WordTech Communications:
Amazon
WordTech Communications

(See Amazon link for more information and reviews. See publisher link for more information, blurbs about the collection and other sites the collection is available through.)




   

Friday, December 12, 2014

Whispers in the Galleries~ A Special Book Giveaway



In keeping with the theme of the upcoming winter/spring Art & Soul issue, we are excited to present an interactive book giveaway for this collection of mainly ekphrastic poetry by Lee Marc Stein. "The goal was to offer readers new ways of looking at some of the world's greatest paintings, works whose artists include Rembrandt, Velazquez, Caravaggio, Vermeer, Renoir, Gauguin, Matisse, Goya, Dali and Wyeth. The poems often provide historical and/or psychological insight into their creation."

The poetry of Whispers in the Galleries gives active voice, thought, movement and sound to many of the still images that have captured our imaginations over the centuries. Art speaks to us in a myriad of individual ways and Stein shares what he's heard and discovered, attempting to discern the subjects' truth.

For this giveaway, which kicks off our Art & Soul season, we want you to think of a piece of visual art that has profoundly spoken to you. Comment below and tells us what piece of art you've seen that sticks out in your mind and include why. We will randomly select our giveaway winner from amongst the early comments by Jan. 4th. Be sure to give detail about how the work of art you mention affected you—what feelings/thoughts it triggered, what inspiration it gave. We encourage discussion; we want to know about the voice you discovered in the frame...


Whispers in the Galleries is now available through Amazon and Barnes & Noble websites:
Amazon
Barnes & Noble






Thursday, October 30, 2014

To Revel, To Dream

"Supermoon" by C. Michelle Olson; http://cmichelleolson.com/


Our autumn/winter issue opens with the following paragraph:

"Amidst fundamental change, evolutionary transformation, emotional inheritances across generations, loss, decline and gain, we harvest by flame hues of the season what the preceding months have forged. Shifts in light, time and nature call for an introspective accounting of the shifts in our own lives. From the initial autumnal awakening wrought with realizations and all that we've accumulated, to the winter withdrawal for rest, repair, planning and dreaming, this issue compels us to embark on physical and emotional journeys of self-discovery. It's time to venture out into the dark heart of the unknown, embrace the mystery and revere the moment as we carve a way through."

Interestingly, in the ancient Celtic tradition, Halloween was regarded as the New Year. If we think of the harvest as having gathered the abundance of the year, all that we yielded, learned and received, if we think of winter as the quiet after, a gestation before the rebirth of spring when we start again, this time of year would seem an ending before a beginning. In-between cycles of seasons and life, should there not come a time after laboring, preceeding rest, to acknowledge and celebrate? The autumn opens the holiday season for many of us. Is it then not fitting that one and all should take time to recharge and reward themselves with love, light and laughter during this time? For all that we've lost, all that we've gained, for all that's changed, let us remember, take stock of who and what's most important and then lift a glass to the present. As the featured poem below rightly states, "All is done that can be done." Being done, let us revel and dream.   

Last Harvest

by Nancy Morgan-Boucher

Under the burnished bales of hay
under the prickled straw fields
covenantal crones bruise the leaves
of apple mint, crush the breathy wilding grapes
snatched from woody nightshade’s clasp;
decoct chokecherries to blackened flame.

Bid to sip, Demeter, to visions,
infusion of vervain for drowsiness.
Lord of the Underworld desires
Persephone again.  Lady of the Harvest, dream.
All is done that can be done.
Pull down the Full Corn Moon.


Bio- Nancy Morgan-Boucher lives in Rehoboth, MA where she founded Poetry in the Village in 2009 at the local library.  Morgan-Boucher has been a featured poet at Main Street Cafe, Easton, MA, Coffee Milano, Middleboro, MA, Blue State Coffee, Providence, RI, Mike Amado Memorial Poetry Series, Plymouth, MA, Dream-Speak, Plymouth, MA and Stone Soup, Cambridge, MA. Her work also appears in Finding Water: Poems and Stories by the Nomad Writers, 2011. She has recently read poetry from her chapbook, Climbing the Family Tree, on the sidewalk of the venerable pub, The Drunken Poet, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia.  Morgan-Boucher's poems have appeared in Siren: A Contemporary Literary Journal, University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, The Unitarian Universalist Poets: A Contemporary American Survey, Pudding House Publications, Jamestown, Ohio, and The Wilderness House Literary Review, an on-line literary magazine. Her work has recently been published by The Write Place At the Write Time, an online literary journal.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

It Takes a Village: A Storytelling Experiment Utilizing Social Media

Beginning on June 23rd, eleven participants ranging from established novelists and instructors to newly published writers, started taking turns telling one story through Twitter posts.  The activity, coined ‘Twitter Tales’, is a storytelling experiment that means to further define the role of social media in the writer’s life; addressing opposing beliefs, questions and myths. What we’ve discovered thus far dispels some commonly held views and forges new ones while raising questions about further possibilities. We will be sharing more about our revelations on this wild ride of creativity, but this post will introduce the players, the story and the start of our pioneering adventure.

So how did we end up in a 1920s LA noir? None of us rightly know. It happened along the way. That’s what is so fascinating about this whole endeavor. Yet perhaps it would be right to say that the story and the idea of the activity, all began with the original trouble-maker that had to go asking questions, researching and gathering recruits to investigate the idea of social media for writers. Not content with the conflicting information, the lack of available statistics and unexplored territories, she felt compelled to go on a crusade for answers to bring back for her readers. That fiery dame and her brazen ideas.  I’m sure it’s no mystery who that troublesome broad is. (I just wish you’d pretended to wait a few moments longer to pin it on me.) Once I had my accomplices, I came up with 4 posts for the others to vote on as a beginning. There were no dictates or restraints on genre or premise. This was the winner:  "A key, a ring, a license plate; all metal, all evidence of life, all that was left in the end. The element deemed 'the decline of matter.'"

We would each be moving this story forward one post, one turn at a time. It seemed that we could ‘play God’ in 140 characters or less. What we started to discover, however, is that this story had its own momentum and was teaching us as we went. The story formed a particular voice early on, despite 11 varied writers driving it. Though the story is now a 20s noir and has clear elements of that genre, it still transcends it with a contemplative literary tone. While checking that the story is historically accurate, what was interesting, is that the research for location, transportation and communication (telephone direct dial service) coincided with what we’d already written.

One writer was given a book on the 1920s as a gift right before the story landed in that time period. Another who hadn’t yet taken their first turn, said that they had family in the LA area at that time. When making an example art set to accompany the story on a digital collage site (more on the art component in posts to come), I chose a French song to play in the background for its sound. What I realized when I translated the lyrics was that it fit the characters’ feelings perfectly at that point in the story and I hadn’t known that ahead of time. Beyond the serendipity at work, a theme behind our magazine itself, we learned about ourselves and our roles.

As the complexity in the story arc rose, minute details of dates, objects, actions and emotional ties carried added weight. The dynamic challenge increases to cohesively construct the story 140 characters at a time, building upon one another’s words. The story’s life depends on how well we can all work together and as a result, it’s no longer about personal motivation deciding our course, but rather the needs of the story. We’re developing each other’s leads, solving each other’s mysteries and supporting each other’s paths. Writing is deemed an isolating profession—said to be even more so in the digital age. We create alone, we wrestle our own inner egos and censors. We are accountable to ourselves and make all the decisions. The work’s victories and struggles are individual.

Yet here, it’s all about coming together to do what we can and must to make our story survive and thrive. Like the game of Trust, we step in when it’s our turn, then let go and trust that the person following behind will securely catch what we’ve placed in their arms. There can be inherent challenges in this (both fun challenges that inspire and challenges that push us, adapting on our feet mid-sprint). With our great team, we are working collectively to craft a great story and share all that we’ve discovered. Isolated by writing? Nope. Isolated by technology? No—brought together. We’re putting the ‘social’ in social media.

The Story

Beginning: “A key, a ring, a license plate; all metal, all evidence of life, all that was left in the end. The element deemed ‘the decline of matter.’"

Charles Salzberg: That's all I had to work with. I've had less which turned out to be more than enough. 1st step: Find the lock the key fit. #TwitterTales

Diane McDonough: I had to get a grip & mourn later, forging those metals-ring, key, license plate-into armor that would shield me from all this. #TwitterTales

Jackie Dawn: Still, old memories were like old habits. I rolled the ring across my palm & remembered his words as he slipped it on my finger. #TwitterTales

Joseph Barro: My mind raced. My ears bled in a deafening ring. My vision returning more clearly. The plate read: CA. The date...could it be? #TwitterTales

Linda Emma: Impossible. Unrelated,yet totally relevant? How could its expiration be the same as his: April 18, 1923 #twittertales

Martin Crosbie: I grabbed the key. It was time to go back to the beginning, time to remember what he'd told me, time to finally seek the truth #TwitterTales

Pat Greene: Right then it hit me - how many truths or even lies like this had he kept from me? Had I known Mark at all? The phone rang #TwitterTales

Rochelle Shapiro: “Hello?” “Is Mark there?” a woman said. “Who is this?” I said. “Mark’s wife,” she said. I was silent as Theda Bara on screen. #TwitterTales

Stephanie Haddad: I had so many questions, but could only manage an “Oh?” I wanted to scream. But this woman was the only avenue toward answers. #TwitterTales

Terin Tashi Miller: "Mark's not here. He's gone." I said. It was true. "How did you get this number?" I had to keep her on the line. I had to. #TwitterTales

NMB: Don’t be coy. I know who you are. I don’t really concern myself with my husband’s dalliances or whereabouts. I want the key. #TwitterTales

Charles Salzberg: What makes you think I have the key? Even if I did, why would I give it to you? Perhaps we should meet and maybe work this out.#TwitterTales

Diane McDonough: Alright. But know that I hired a private eye and I have pictures that I’ll take to the FBI unless I get the key. Understand? #TwitterTales

Jackie Dawn: “Fine,” I said, though belief was shallow. “Meet me at the sign.” “Sign?” She asked. “Don't feign ignorance. You know which one.” #TwitterTales

Joseph Barro: The line disconnected. Headlights appeared through the canyon mist. A yellow cab? I froze. Run? I walked casually to the road. #TwitterTales

Linda Emma: Time to confront this hired PI. Even if those photos could topple an empire. It was just a house of cards – flimsy as the sign #TwitterTales

Martin Crosbie: He was from the old neighborhood, I knew him. With his rumpled coat + eleven-o’clock leer he was calling himself a PI now. #TwitterTales

Pat Greene: "When I saw the cab, I guessed that her PI had followed me here to Hollywoodland, but I never thought he would be you, John. #TwitterTales"

Rochelle Shapiro: "Marion, I know what happened to Mark. Get in." #Twittertales

Stephanie Haddad: My breath caught. Await an angry woman or trust a man I couldn’t trust. Old flames will be my downfall. I ducked into the cab. #twittertales

Terin Tashi Miller: I slid in the cab next to John. His hand rested on top of mine. Slowly, he turned my hand over. "Did you bring the key?" #TwitterTales

NMB: “Marion, I’m taking you to the bank right now.You’re going to open that safety deposit box.You’ll never have him or the money.”#TwitterTales

To be continued…  Find out what happens to contemplative, sophisticated Marion, discover what Mark was up to and whether he’s dead or alive! (It seems a number of readers, etc. want his character to have been killed off, but you’ll just have to see.)

See new posts as we continue through the story arc and all of the posts thus far on Twitter @WriteplcWritetm. You can also read the story on Facebook through our page and the Twitter event page (updates are posted every three turns):
https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Write-Place-At-the-Write-Time-literary-journal/345104540254.

Read about the thrilling visual arts component involving the digital collage site Polyvore in an upcoming post.  A contest between two art groups was held for two weeks during which time artistically inclined users were encouraged to create art sets inspired by the first eleven individual Twitter posts from the story. The results from this synergistic combination of talented writers and amazing artists have been nothing short of awe-inspiring and the reaction from entrants around the world was profound. Well over 100 Polyvore art sets were entered with enthusiasm, creative passion, emotion and dedication.

The Players

Charles Salzberg is a freelance writer whose work has appeared in Esquire, GQ, New York Magazine, the New York Times and other periodicals. He is the author or co-author of more than 25 non-fiction books. His novel, Swann's Last Song, was nominated for a Shamus Award. He has also written a sequel, Swann Dives In, and the third in the series, Swann's Lake of Despair will be published in October. His latest novel, Devil in the Hole, was named one of the set crime novels of the year by Suspense magazine. He has been a Visiting Professor of Magazine at the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University and he teaches writing at the Writer's Voice and the New York Writers Workshop where he is a Founding Member.


Diane McDonough is a poet and writer who has been published in numerous journals. She won first prize in the PrimeTime Cape Cod 2013 Poetry Contest and has exhibited her poetry in responsive art exhibits, including the current 2014 Poetry and Art Show, Wickford Art Association. Diane, who worked as a high school educator for over 25 years, has a B.A. in English and an M.Ed. in Counseling Psychology. She lives in the village of Marstons Mills on Cape Cod with her husband and their two dogs.


Jackie Dawn received a bachelor's degree in creative writing and literature from Hofstra University in 2007, where she was also the recipient of the Eugene Schneider Award for Prose. Her work has appeared in several literary journals, including Susquehanna University's The Apprentice Writer. She lives in New York, where she works as a senior editor in marketing and as a freelance writer. In addition, she is a co-moderator of and contributor to a weekly fiction blog. She is a dedicated shoe and book addict, and is currently working on her first novel.


Joseph Barro resides in Southern California with his wife and family.  He is a high school teacher, as well as a lifelong musician, songwriter, recording, and performing artist. Joseph has written hundreds of songs, a variety of recorded albums, and has just begun writing short stories for publication. He just recently celebrated his first publication with his short story “Bodies” featured in the Winter/Spring 2014 issue of the literary magazine thewriteplaceatthewritetime.org.  Joseph is now participating in a social media storytelling project entitled #TwitterTales with a variety of other writers. Follow Joseph on Twitter or contact at the following address:
Twitter: @MrJBarro
Email: josephbarro@me.com


Linda Emma is an author, educator and educational marketing writer. She creates client content and supervises a small team of freelance writers, helping them to hone their individual skills and styles while always maintaining the client voice. Linda also works at a small New England college where she has served as instructor, writing tutor and learning consultant. In the spare moment or two she can eke out of any week, she pens posts to a tongue-in-cheek titled blog Kidssuck.net and tries to still maintain a relationship with the fictional characters of her forthcoming second novel. She is married with two children who always inspire.


In a press release, Amazon called Martin Crosbie one of their success stories of 2012. His self-publishing journey has been chronicled in Publisher's Weekly, Forbes Online, and Canada's The Globe and Mail newspaper. His non-fiction work How I Sold 30,000 eBooks on Amazon's Kindle: An Easy-To-Follow Self-Publishing Guidebook, 2014 Edition has been called “A must-have go-to reference book for self-published writers.” He's also the author of My Temporary Life – Book One of the My Temporary Life Trilogy, My Name Is Hardly - Book Two of the My Temporary Life Trilogy, Lies I Never Told: A Collection of Short Stories, and Believing Again: A Tale Of Two Christmases. You can learn more about Martin at:
www.martincrosbie.com
Connect with him at:
martin@martincrosbie.com.


Pat Greene is originally from Ireland but has been calling New York home for the past twenty five years. He earns his daily crust working in the very unique and demanding, yet very exciting NYC construction industry. In his spare time, he likes to write and you can read some of his short fiction @TheWritePlaceAtTheWriteTime.org


Rochelle Jewel Shapiro’s first novel, Miriam The Medium (Simon & Schuster), was nominated for the Harold U. Ribelow Award. Her novel, Kaylee’s Ghost (Amazon and Nook), is an Indie Finalist. Her latest short story collection, What I Wish You'd Told Me, has just been published by Shebooks. She’s published essays in NYT (Lives), and Newsweek and in many anthologies. Her poetry, short stories, and essays have appeared in The Coe Review, Compass Rose, The Griffin, Inkwell Magazine, The Iowa Review, Los Angeles Review, The MacGuffin, Memoir And Moment, Negative Capability, Pennsylvania English, The Carolina Review, and more. She won the Brandon Memorial Literary Award from Negative Capability. Shapiro is a professional psychic who currently teaches writing at UCLA Extension. 
http://rochellejewelshapiro.com


Stephanie Haddad is a wife and mother of two by day, a freelance writer and author by bedtime. She is the author of four romance novels, including the Amazon top-ten hit A Previous Engagement. Stephanie also enjoys writing short stories, some of which appear in the virtual archives of The Write Place At the Write Time. Now that her youngest is nearing age 2, she's hoping to dedicate more time to her fiction writing, including a paranormal romance series in the works.


Terin Tashi Miller spent many of his formative years in India, the child of anthropologist parents. Since then, he has lived and worked in a variety of countries in Europe and Asia. His writing has appeared in guide books, international magazines including Time and Geografica Revista, and newspapers including The Wall Street Journal, The Dallas Morning News and The Los Angeles Times.  Born in St. Louis, Mo., and raised in Madison, Wis. and several provinces in India, he currently lives in New Jersey.


Nicole M. Bouchard is Editor-in-Chief and founder of The Write Place At the Write Time literary journal. This is a role she has enjoyed for six years, connecting with incredible creative individuals. She is a member of the National League of American Pen Women. She began her writing career in journalism at a regional entertainment publication with pieces including interviews with Broadway actress Marie Danvers and singer/songwriter Jewel Kilcher. Combining magazine journalism editing experience with her fiction writing and passion for literature, she turned her interest toward the literary world. Her portfolio includes best-selling authors such as Janet Fitch, Dennis Lehane, Arthur Golden, Alice Hoffman Joanne Harris, Mona Simpson, Melanie Benjamin and a number of creative professionals. She served as one of the editors on the small press panel at The Fourth Annual Mass. Poetry Festival in 2012.  Ms. Bouchard has recently enjoyed branching out into freelance substantive and developmental manuscript editing. She still writes as time allows, assembling a short fiction collection and working on a novel.