4W twenty-two

David Gilbey (editor), 4w twenty-two New Writing (2011)

fourW is an anthology produced regularly by the Booranga Writers’ Centre, home of Wagga Wagga Writers Writers. The 22nd issue, the first I’ve read, is extraordinarily eclectic: in small part a showcase for local Wagga Wagga writers, it extends to work from Japan (a Noh play, some fine short poems) and elsewhere far beyond these shores, established writers rubbing shoulders with those still wet from the cocoon, the academic with the demotic, and a world of diversity in between: short stories with the ghosts of O Henry, Raymond Carver, Henry Lawson and maybe Tropfest hovering over their shoulders, a touch of magic realism, some ‘ladies who lunch’ pieces (is that a genre?), cryptic and narrative and lyric and satirical poetry. It was perfect to carry in my bag while I was immersed at home in the completely unportable Reamde.

My crabby editorial soul snarked into life once or twice, most strikingly at this: ‘Her mother … insisted she keep her hair long and plaited to trick the suitors into seeing her as young, virile and obedient.’ Um, note to author: I may be missing something, but I think you meant nubile.

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