“The Land of Rainbow Greetings” Already Up on With Candlelight


Those editors at With Candlelight are fast. My story is already up, and I’ve already been paid.

The story is about a man who writes icky poetry for greeting cards. He meets a woman who claims his greeting cards changed her life, but things aren’t always as rosy as they seem to be at first. The man has a crisis about the meaning of his life and work.

I especially had fun inventing different greeting card poems for this story. Also, the woman can hardly finish a sentence–hence her recourse to prefabricated poems–so her dialogue was fun to write.

As usual, I found some typos in the printed product. It is very difficult to get all these out. I hope you will check out and enjoy the story here anyway.

Photo credit: 13bernta, Rainbow. June 2010. Flickr Commons. https://flic.kr/p/bXs3Uh. CC BY-NC 2.0.

“The Land of Rainbow Greetings” Accepted


I just received word that my story, “The Land of Rainbow Greetings,” will appear in a new journal called With Candlelight. This is especially welcome because when I first wrote this story, I wasn’t sure I liked it. I wrote it in a hurry for a deadline at a place that rejected it, and at the last minute I Hemingwayed it big time–cut three quarters of what I had written. Initially, I’d had a whole dinner party, but I pared it down to just the two main characters. I also didn’t know if I liked it because it is based heavily on an idea, and I wondered if the idea had taken over the story and made it a dull fable.

I liked it so little that for a year I just left it here or there at places that seemingly forgot about it. Then a few days ago, on Submishmash, I think, I saw that With Candlelight was looking for material. I went there and had a good vibe from the editors’ statements. This story seemed right because it is basically literary with a slight element of horror, and they like horror but are open to various genres and cross-genre work. Still, was the story good enough to bother them with?

I reread it and liked it a lot better. I even felt bad that I had consigned it to limbo for so long. I felt it might merit the $15 honorarium With Candlelight was offering. And luckily, the editors agreed–in very short order.

I draw a couple of conclusions from this: 1. Keep your eye on those newsletters. Some opportunities will pan out. 2. Revisit your work once you have some distance on it. It might surprise you. And 3. The editors of With Candlelight are cool people with great taste.


Photo credit: 13bernta, Rainbow. June 2010. Flickr Commons. https://flic.kr/p/bXs3Uh. CC BY-NC 2.0.


Out in Paperback

In 2013, University of Delaware Press published a collection of essays edited by my husband, Donald R. Wehrs. Emmanuel Levinas, whose views inform the literary criticism in the volume, believed that human nature was fundamentally ethical, that we are all “accused” by the Other, and this responsibility for the Other constitutes us as subjects. 

I have an essay in this volume, “Milne and the Tonstant Weaders,” and just so you know, not only my husband, but the outside readers for the collection also liked it. Essentially, the essay repudiates readings of Milne as only colonizing (toward children and colonial others). I argue that viewing Milne through a Levinasian lens reveals his sociability and his ethical concern with others and with the dawning ethical subjectivity of his son and the children in his audience.

I have always loved Milne’s children’s books, and one of my favorite memories from my daughter’s early childhood is her laughing with delight and making me fall off her bed over and over to dramatize Pooh’s falling down the bee tree and flying “gracefully into a gorse bush.” So I am happy that Delaware has now released the collection with my essay in it in paperback. I hope it will be assigned more in courses and purchased by more libraries. I have read the whole volume, and I believe all the essays deserve wider exposure.