Sam HiyateInterviewsBarbara Radecki and daughters Stefanie and Michele.
Your reconciliation of the domestic and the erotic.
Barbara: When my daughters were little, my husband’s work began to take him on the road a lot. Not only was I suddenly on my own with two little girls, but I was trying to find my creative voice amid a houseful of dreary chores. I loved being a mom, but resented that domestic drudgery.
I took it out on my husband. It took me a long time to realize that either I could writhe with resentment—while still having to do the dishes and laundry—or I could just do the work and let it go.
Believe me, you feel a lot sexier, a lot more attracted, when you’re not listing all your partner's mundane shortcomings in your head. And the chores lose their onus very quickly when you’re not seething about them. Anyway, in the end, domestic obligations balanced out between us.
Best reconciliation of the domestic and the erotic: the at-home date night.
Today we are announcing our nonfiction winner, but we first want to thank all the writers who submitted their personal essays/stories to our debut contest. It was extremely painful narrowing the entries down to one winner and four finalists.
Our winner is Melanie Malinowski for "Arena Rock," a smart and wry story about sex, music and nostalgia. Alexandra appreciated the clever juxtaposition of snow, music and time to highlight the ephemeral aspects of love. Sam loved how Melanie transported him back to the music of the eighties. I was awed by the deceptive simplicity of the story's intricate structure and also Melanie's effortless and beautiful prose.
Melanie—who has a PhD in creative writing and literature and teaches creative writing at Texas' Children's Hospital—wins $1,000.00 and an evaluation of a book length manuscript from literary agent and Don't Talk to Me About Love editor, Sam Hiyate.
Our four nonfiction finalists will be published with commentaries throughout the summer. They are Sonja Boon for "French Kiss,”Minna Dubin for "You and Me: the Prologue,"Ellen Goodlett for "Stealing the Story Back," and Nathalie Alyon for "A Story of Love for Love of Story."
Congratulations to our winner and finalists! Poetry winner and finalists will be published June 30.