During the month of May, Black Lawrence Press author Jenny Drai is on board to critique mixed genre and hybrid manuscripts. Jenny is the author of three collections of poetry, two poetry chapbooks, and an award-winning novella. Her prose and poetry have been published or are forthcoming in numerous print and online journals including Alaska Quarterly Review, American Letters and Commentary, Banango Street, Colorado Review, Denver Quarterly, OmniVerse, and Pleiades.
Jenny is accepting everything from short 2-page pieces of work to full-length manuscripts. The fees and parameters for each of these categories is as follows:
• Short pieces, up to 2 pages in length, $25
• Medium piece, up to 10 pages in length, $40
• Long pieces, up to 20 pages in length, $50
• Extended pieces/chapbooks, up to 40 pages in length, $195
• Short manuscripts, up to 90 pages in length, $325
• Long manuscripts, up to 200 pages in length, $500
All manuscripts should be double-spaced and formatted in 12-point font.
The deadline to submit work for this consultation program is May 31. Jenny will complete her work and respond to all participants by June 30.
Jenny Drai's Statement of Purpose
Reading transports me. The truest thing I can say about myself is that I am most alive when I read. Often I feel as if opening a book’s cover is like stepping over a threshold into another world. As an editor, I respect that writing is almost always at least partly a world-building exercise. Thus, as I make suggestions for revision, I respect the world the writer is building and concentrate my focus on helping fully flesh out the parameters of that world.
When reading hybrid or multi-genre manuscripts, I bring my background as a poet, essayist, fiction writer, and someone who has lived and written in the spaces in between to my editing process. Story (regardless of genre), a focus on language, imagery, and form, a sense of urgency, and a sense of the thinking, feeling the human behind the words on the page are all things I look for and edit with a mind toward strengthening.
In terms of my aesthetic when it comes to hybrid work, some of my favorite texts include the verse novels of Max Porter, Joy McCullough, and Bernardine Evaristo, essayistic poetry collections from Lillian-Yvonne Bertram and Syd Staiti, and work by Anne Carson, Sun Yung Shin, Maggie Nelson and Lily Hoang. Other writers I love include Siri Hustvedt, David Mitchell, Helen Oyeyemi, Pattie McCarthy, Franny Choi, Marina Warner, Duriel E. Harris, Haruki Murakami, Kazuo Ishiguro, Margaret Atwood, Zadie Smith, Lisa Fishman, Muriel Leung, Harryette Mullen, Li-Young Lee, jos charles, Hilary Mantel, and Toni Morrison. I also have a soft spot for writing that connects to fairy tales or mythology from any and all cultural traditions or that combines scholarship with creative writing.
Please submit your manuscript as a MS Word document if possible, and, in the case of longer manuscripts, tell me a little bit about your project in your cover letter.