Want to participate in the gathering of Orlando's up-and-coming literary avant-garde? Head to Urban ReThink Wednesday from 6-8 p.m. for a book launch party for Fragmentation + Other Stories replete with drinks, musical entertainment and heady conversation. Also, local hip-hop star Swamburger will perform his instrumental soundtrack to the book – he was inspired to write the music after reading the anthology of short fiction. No hint yet as to what the soundtrack is like since the world premiere is happening at the book launch.
The authors, including Ryan Rivas, James A. Crescitelli, Edward Bloor, Ed Bull, Hunter Choate and Peg Alford Pursell, all put forth engaging stories, some with dark themes, without being self-serious, as is often the case with inaugural fiction anthologies. Each contributor is connected to Florida in some way, which was the only criterion for submission to Burrow Press, publisher of Fragmentation.
Jana Waring, editor and founder of Burrow Press, established the small, independent publishing house about a year and a half ago to promote fiction from Florida writers. As a graduate student at Rollins College, Waring started a blog that featured her interviews with Orlando locals. Those interviews evolved into her masters thesis project and then culminated in the publication of Who's That? Discovering Orlando One Interview at a Time in March 2010. The book contains interviews with Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer, a homeless woman from Lake Eola Park and others in an attempt to reveal the people who make up the city beautiful. An interview can span several pages and some are exhaustive, making readers feel like they just got all the details – juicy and mundane – from a chatty best friend. It's clear that Waring gets people talking.
Housed at Urban ReThink (the coworking space for creatives raised from the ashes of Urban Think bookstore in early January), Burrow Press is in talks with several writers for its next project, although Waring is mum as to what that might be.
Fragmentation is $14 and available at burrowpress.com (you can also get a copy at the launch party or at one of several local retail outlets).
Closing this week: This is the last week to catch a cool show hanging at the Gallery at Avalon Island downtown. Time Passages features the work of eight artists and four poets; the show paired one poet with two artists; in a sort of artistic round-robin (or a game of telephone, even), the first artist provided the poet with a piece of art on which he or she based a poem. That poem, in turn, was provided to another artist who used it as inspiration for a work of art. The resulting artworks and poems are on display through Feb. 11.
If you missed last week's Impressions Orlando print fair (see last week's cover story "First Impressions," Feb. 3) but still want to get a taste of the local fine-art print scene, you still have a few days to catch Ke Francis: Recent Small Works on display until Feb. 13 at the Orlando Museum of Art.
Sweet Ups, a show of surreal oil paintings by Tatiana Suarez and illustrations from Plinio Pinto, closes on Feb. 16.