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A Day of Meals During a Boring Apocalypse

At Table of Contents, the author of a new release provides a food/drink menu that’s themed to their book. Today, Brandi Wells offers breakfast, lunch, dinner, and dessert for her new book from Civil Coping Mechanisms, This Boring Apocalypse. Breakfast: Have a piece of meat, rare and bloody. It doesn’t matter what kind of meat. Whatever kind of meat you prefer is fine. If you don’t eat meat, a portabella mushroom will do. Don’t wash the dirt off your mushroom. Pull it from the earth. Pull it out of the ground and be delighted. Or, eat your blood meat, slurping...

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Don’t Ignore the Teacups: A Visual Writing Prompt

This week’s writing prompt comes from Adam Robinson of Publishing Genius, whose latest book is Valparaiso, Round the Horn, a fiction collection by Madeline ffitch. You can respond in the comments or by email to amy@realpants.com—we’ll pick one or two entrants and thank them with a copy of the book plus a chance of publication at Real Pants. (We will only reply if you win, or if we would like to publish your piece.) Here’s this week’s prompt. Look at this cover: It’s an original drawing by Jes Seamans of landland. Isn’t it beautiful? It does not specifically represent any occurrence...

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A Smackdown Writing Exercise from Halle Butler

This week, Halle Butler offers a prompt loosely based on her newly released novel, JILLIAN (Curbside Splendor). You can respond to the prompt in the comments or by email to amy@realpants.com for a chance of publication at Real Pants. (We will only reply if we would like to publish your piece.) For a second, think about something or someone you really, really don’t like (SUVs, your boss, someone you envy, people who don’t recycle, etc.). It should be your hardest-held and most sanctimonious opinion. Write something where you and your opinion get a huge victory. Like staircase wit, but...

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Everyday Genius Guest Editors Say Farewell!

Since 2009, the online literary journal, Everyday Genius, published nearly 1500 writers. Its editor, Adam Robinson, announced its end late last week, February 5, 2015. Beyond the singular achievement of publishing a new piece every weekday, the journal stands out for its many wonderful guest editors: 45 people took the reins for a month (sometimes twice) over the course of almost five years. In his farewell, Adam writes, “A very special thanks to the guest editors who came up with unique ideas and filled the days with groundbreaking work.” Here, many of the guest editors take the opportunity to say thanks right back....

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Letter from Bangkok

Julian Berengaut, author of the novel This Isn’t Easy for Me, has spent the last two years living in Bangkok, Thailand. He writes in about the sidewalks there. Gloomy Thoughts on Walking in Bangkok This city in not kind to walkers. Not unkind to all walkers, maybe, but awful to some of us, people like me who think—or at least who thought before they came here—that sidewalks can be taken for granted, that it was an inalienable right of any urban dweller to leave home and just walk somewhere, anywhere, uninhibited. Bangkok’s heat and humidity—those things I knew about and those can’t really...

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An Imaginative History Fiction Exercise from Peter Ranscombe

This week, journalist Peter Ranscombe offers a writing prompt from history themed around his debut novel, Hare, which is out in hardback and ebook from Knox Robinson Publishing.You can respond to the prompt in the comments or by email to amy@realpants.com for a chance of publication at Real Pants. (We will only reply if we would like to publish your piece.) History can be a rich and fascinating source of inspiration for fiction. As part of the research for Hare—which takes the story of Burke and Hare, Scotland’s most notorious killers, and asks what happened next to Hare after...

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A Prophetic Writing Prompt from Caroline Cabrera

This week, Caroline Cabrera asks us to think about prophecy and obsession in a prompt themed to her new book of poems, Bicycle Year, now available for pre-order from H_NGM_N. You can respond to the prompt in the comments or by email to amy@realpants.com for a chance of publication at Real Pants. (We will only reply if we would like to publish your piece.) A Bicycle Year Writing Prompt in Two Parts Part 1: You may not have a year, so pick a time in the near future (the end of the day, the end of the week) and...

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The Baltimore Atrocities / Real Pants Launch Party

On Saturday night we were beyond surprised by the turnout for the Launch Party we threw, in tandem with Coffee House Press, for our website and for John Dermot Woods’s amazing book (which we talked about and talked about last week in our first ever Festschrift). On Saturday morning we were pretty sure the weather would make it so no one would show up. We had already bought four cases of nice champagne, so we were preemptively bummed. I think I might have convinced Amy and John not to buy as many cups because of this. There’s nothing more depressing than...

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A Baltimore Atrocities Writing Exercise from John Dermot Woods

This week, John Dermot Woods offers a prompt themed to his new book from Coffeehouse Press, The Baltimore Atrocities. You are invited to share your response to the prompt in the comments. Next week, John will choose one of the responses and send a signed copy of his book to the writer. The word atrocity can suggest something that is foreign, removed. We owe it to ourselves and our neighbors to become intimate with atrocity, to remember that it is close and that it comes in all shapes and sizes. Here’s an exercise in bearing witness to atrocity: 1. Go...

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A Photography Prompt from Lucy Ferriss

One way that we will celebrate new releases at Real Pants is by asking authors to provide a writing prompt that’s themed to their book. Then, readers are invited to post their responses to the prompt in the comments section of the post. Today, Lucy Ferriss offers a prompt that she used in writing her most recent novel. This book, A SISTER TO HONOR (Berkley/Penguin)—called “vivid and compelling, as ineluctable as a Greek tragedy” by Claire Messud—came out on January 6. Find a photo from a trip you’ve taken recently, preferably a close-up of a building, a street, a...

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Pairings of Beer, Bourbon, and The Kept by James Scott

At Table of Contents, the author of a new release provides a food/drink menu that’s themed to their book. Today, James Scott offers a chapter-by-chapter beer and whiskey pairing to celebrate the paperback release on January 6 of his first novel, The Kept, published by Harper Perennial. The Kept was a finalist for the New England Book Award, long listed for the Flaherty Dunnan First Novel Prize, and named a best debut of the year by Amazon. The novel has been or will be translated into French, Spanish, Polish, and Dutch. So, with that: Salut! Zdrowie! Proost! BOOK ONE Chapter One: Wicked Weed’s Black...

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An Audio Writing Prompt from Niina Pollari

http://realpants.com/podcast-player/2986/audio-writing-prompt-niina-pollari.mp3Download file | Play in new window One way that we will celebrate new releases at Real Pants is by asking authors to provide a writing prompt that’s themed to their book. Then, readers are invited to post their responses to the prompt in the comments section of the post. Today, we kick off with a contribution from Niina Pollari, author of Dead Horse (from the wonderful Birds, LLC). On Monday, Niina will choose a favorite among the comments and send the writer a signed copy of Dead Horse. Happy writing! Good luck! WRITING PROMPT Part 1: Find a...

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Eating a Dead Horse: A Menu from Niina Pollari

In Table of Contents, an author of a new release provides a food/drink menu that’s themed to their book. Today, Niina Pollari provides a bill of fare for her new collection of poetry, DEAD HORSE, published by Birds, LLC. MENU: First course: Smoked white fish, served whole with garlic sauce. Sparkling wine. Main course: Organic baby formula and vitamins. A Coors Light (poured into a glass). A cup of water. Dessert: Princess Cake with marzipan overlay. A coffee with a liberal splash of Bailey’s. DRESS CODE: Fancy underwear. Overcoat that has at least one pocket filled with receipts. DEAD HORSE...

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