Welcome to the inaugural issue of Interfictions: A Journal of Interstitial Arts, a web-based journal that extends the Interstitial Arts Foundation’s two-volume anthology series, Interfictions.
As writers and editors with one foot in the academic literary community and one in the science fiction and fantasy community, we see the boundaries between genres and forms as permeable membranes, not fortified borders. Our mission is to gather pieces from wildly different corners of the writing, visual arts, and music worlds in order to showcase weird and wonderful work that falls outside conventional categories.
The online journal we’ve assembled for your reading, listening, and viewing pleasure, focuses on interdisciplinary art that blurs the lines between genres, forms, and mediums. Interstitial art brings music and language and visual art together, and repurposes old forms for new subject matter. It produces unfamiliar styles and strange, hybrid genres of writing for readers who have a taste for something different, for something new. Publishing as an online journal allows us a much larger degree of play in these areas, and we hope to push the boundaries of what it means to publish on the web.
In this first issue, we’ve assembled an exhibit of fiction that remixes and re-imagines form, genre, and voice. Jedediah Berry’s “The Thing Under the Drawing Room” mixes an homage to adventure narratives, especially those of Conan the Barbarian, with a mannered tale of intrigue. Kiini Ibura Salaam’s “The Taming” inhabits the perspective of a captured wolf. Keith Miller’s “The Tale of Robin Duck” mixes text and illustration in a slideshow format to create a different kind of reading experience. And Janalyn Guo’s “Acting Lessons” presents a play-within-a-story that examines, and perhaps expands, the roles we play in life.
Our nonfiction and poetry offerings broaden the field of the Interfictions anthologies, allowing for even more innovation and genre play. In nonfiction, Sunny Chan’s “a Collection of things arranged in order” uses lists to link the personal essay to a range of preoccupations: literary, cultural, and environmental. Dan Campbell’s “Codex to Weave a Spell Unspoken” responds to the work of J.R.R. Tolkien in both words and images. And Brit Mandelo’s “Gonzo: The Real, the Surreal, and Hunter S. Thompson,” examines the roots of the outrageous blend of fact and fiction known as gonzo journalism.
In poetry, Rose Lemberg’s “Bone Shadows” mingles the literary with the speculative, and the personal with the magical. Gwynne Garfinkle’s prose poem “Ginnie and the Cooking Contest” works in the spaces between genres, forms of experience, and continents. Paul Jessup’s “all the houses on sesame street are haunted houses” echoes children’s rhymes to express adult loss. And “A Pentatonic Moon” combines words and music: these original translations of five Tang dynasty poems, by Emily Jiang and C.L. Jiang, have been set to music by Emily Jiang.
All of our offerings contain elements that make them hard to classify. The categories “fiction,” “nonfiction,” and “poetry,” should be taken with a healthy dose of salt. Never prescriptive or closed, they are intended as signposts, as question marks, and as a challenge.