Here’s my follow-up conversation with ACN Books about Summer of the Long Knives, including the interview questions and a link to “That Is The Question”, the coda-chapter for New Marwa. This Indie Beginning podcast episode lasts 12 minutes.
If you could go back in time and rewrite a historical moment, what moment would you choose? LS Bassen wanted to revisit WWII and more specifically, the death of Adolf Hitler in her tale Summer of the Long Knives. In this episode, Marie and Benjamin discuss reviews left for the story as well as their thoughts on the topic of Alternative History.
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ACN Books interviews LS Bassen
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That Is The Question
Last year was a busy year!
In August 2016, L. Shapley Bassen’s novella “Showfolk” was featured in The New Frontier by Inkception Books. In September 2016, her short story “What Can the Matter Be?” was featured in The Kenyon Review website. And in February 2016, her short story “Portrait of a Giant Squid” was featured in The Austin Chronicle website. But now in 2017, all 3 stories and more are gathered together in her new collection Showfolk & Stories by Inkception Books!
Eight portraits of players onstage and off. Eight stories about New York. Stories of theatre life in the 1980’s. Including “Showfolk”, “Yesterday”, “Portrait of a Rotary Phone”, and “Portrait of a Giant Squid”. Plus 4 bonus royalty-free scripts for performers!
Author L. Shapley Bassen brings together a new and fresh collection of shorts and scripts. As a finalist for the 2011 Flannery O’Connor award and native New Yorker, Bassen gives us theatre folk, 1987, and life in the Big Apple. She is a winner of the 2009 APP Drama Prize and Mary Rhinehart Fellowship.
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Showfolk & Stories
Happy Thanksgiving! L. Shapley Bassen invites you to take a look at her new online story “The Titanic Was Huge” featured on the very first page of the Feminine Collective website and its Featured Articles section. She adds, “I didn’t expect it this soon!”
Thanksgiving was in the past, and the New Year, as ever, in the future. It was winter in New York, a season for parties.
Accompanied by his fourth wife, Carl Fish attended only the finest, which he defined by his attendance. Often, these affairs were fundraisers although this one was not. Even so, Carl expected that before the evening ended, he would be asked to donate, attend, or approve, and the absence of such solicitation would be his cue abruptly to depart.
Read the rest of the story at: Feminine Collective.
Matters of Contrast by Cory Wright (Flickr, CC, Resized)
L. Shapley Bassen invites you to take a look at her very short story “What Can the Matter Be?” featured on the very first page of The Kenyon Review website and its KR Online section (Fall 2016). She adds, “Anyway, it’s a short short story … and I’m kinda proud of it … and where it is.”
When Homo sapiens or its hybrid heir has outwitted death, will tragedy be missed or transcendence possible? When history has long revealed the mental limits implicit in that question, what could matter about the centennial and jubilee of August 2014? Would the law of the conservation of matter still be on the books? What were books?
Read the rest of the story at: The Kenyon Review.
La gare de Perpignan by Salvador Dali
L. Shapley Bassen’s “Portrait of a Giant Squid” is the first place winner in the 2015 Austin Chronicle Short Story Contest! To see the contest wrap-up and read the winning stories, see “The 24th Annual Austin Chronicle Short Story Contest,” (Arts, Feb. 19).
It would be an understatement to say that in April, Ray was surprised to be his first cousin Donna’s heir. In his mother’s photo albums from the postwar 1940s, Ray appeared as a toddler, and this older cousin had stood over him in that summertime, casting a shadow. His mother had died at 69 in 1987, younger than he was in this August of 2014. Donna’s parents had moved from New York to Los Angeles in the early Fifties. In the past decade of social media, Donna had located more distant members of their scattered family, discovering they were a clan of only children. After Donna friended Ray on Facebook, there had been posts and messages and some emails, never Skype. He’d kept his distance, having no inclination to travel to California. Four decades of international business travel had extinguished wanderlust. Also, he agreed with John Updike: “The true New Yorker secretly believes that people living anywhere else have to be, in some sense, kidding.”
The legal document said that his cousin Donna’s estate included a painting by a major 20th century artist. Ruth Riesenkalmar’s work had finally emerged from eclipse by her husband’s, and the museum site of their house and shared studios on Long Island had been renamed, hyphenated to include her. After learning about the painting, Ray visited three Manhattan museums exhibiting Riesenkalmars. MOMA displayed two from her cephalopod series. A photo the lawyers sent showed Ray that his newly inherited Portrait of a Giant Squid was as color-saturated and indecipherably abstract as MOMA’s except for its dominant circular center entangled in wavy, sucker-circled lines suggesting a squid’s giant eye and tentacles. He could see from its dimensions it would be an ordeal to install in his apartment.
Read the rest of the story at: The Austin Chronicle.
Illustration by Jason Stout