New Ploughshares Solo “The Soul in Paraphrase” Now Available!

Screen Shot 2016-05-16 at 10.45.07 AMWe’re excited to announce the release of our newest Ploughshares Solo, “The Soul in Paraphrase” by Robert Boswell. Ploughshares Solos are stories and essays too long for our traditional print journal that we publish in an affordable, digital format nine times a year. For more information and some great reading material, check out our previously published Solos, or the Ploughshares Solos Omnibus Volume 3.

About “The Soul in Paraphrase”

There’s a specter floating above the pews at afternoon mass. Father Montgovery has no idea why the ghostly presence has followed him around for years, but, when a longtime parishioner asks for help in getting his drug-addicted daughter clean, Father Montgovery must do his best to ignore the phantom and shift his focus to the physical, and sometimes harrowing, world. Written by esteemed author and former Ploughshares guest editor Robert Boswell, “The Soul in Paraphrase” explores sin, redemption, and the complexities of the human soul.

Here’s an excerpt from the Solo:

The floating thing hovers near, no more distinct for its proximity, a slick of translucent oil in a pan of transparent water. Montgovery places a soft palm on the other man’s shoulder. “I’ve heard about Ann.” He does not know which drug is the symptom of the girl’s addiction, but he is certain of the true cause: God’s will. “I’ve prayed for her.”

“Fat lot of good that’s done.”

“Let’s pray together.”

Herbert Jonson retreats into a cave of his deepmost self. The gape of his mouth is dark and almost rectangular, like a cellar window. The priest can smell the dank. Finally, Herbert says, “Nothing on earth can save her.”

Intrigued? Read “The Soul in Paraphrase” today for $1.99!Continue Reading

New Ploughshares Solo: “Córdoba Skies” now available!

WFalco-Final-LoRese’re excited to announce the release of our most recent Ploughshares Solo, “Córdoba Skies” written by Federico Falco and translated from Spanish by Sarah Viren. Ploughshares Solos are stories and essays too long for our traditional print journal that we publish in an affordable, digital format nine times a year. For more information and some great reading material, check out our previously published Solos, or the Ploughshares Solos Omnibus Volume 3.

About “Córdoba Skies”

When 11-year-old Tino isn’t sitting quietly in school, he’s either visiting his dying mother in the hospital or making sure his UFO-obsessed father eats dinner. A loner among his peers, Tino is surprised when Omar, the strongest boy in school, befriends him out of the blue. Will Tino’s intrigue outweigh his self-imposed isolation? Written by Federico Falco and translated from Spanish by Sarah Viren, “Córdoba Skies” is coming of age story similar to the river Tino likes to play in: inviting and winding, yet not without the occasional burst of rapids.Continue Reading

New Ploughshares Solo: “Men Be Either Or, But Never Enough” by Andria Nacina Cole

Screen Shot 2016-02-08 at 12.42.57 PMWe’re thrilled to announce the release of our most recent Ploughshares Solo, “Men Be Either Or, But Never Enough” by Andria Nacina ColePloughshares Solos are stories and essays too long for our traditional print journal that we publish in an affordable, digital format nine times a year. For more information and some great reading material, check out our previously published Solos, or the Ploughshares Solos Omnibus Volume 3.

About “Men Be Either Or, But Never Enough”

Eight-year-old Leeza hates the boys on twenty-fifth street. Worse than anything, she thinks, after they spit on her and tell her she smells. At home, Leeza’s stepmother shows her no sympathy, scrubbing her skin raw and ordering her to chew gum. When the teasing from the “beady-eyed” twins on twenty-fifth takes a dangerous turn, so does the tension between Leeza, her stepmother, and her father. Moving fluidly between unreliable perspectives, “Men Be Either Or, But Never Enough” is a fresh and enthralling account of a young girl’s struggle to make sense of her family and herself.

“Men Be Either Or, But Never Enough” is available on pshares.org for $1.99.Continue Reading

New Ploughshares Solo: “The Detroit Frankfurt School Discussion Group” by Douglas Trevor

Trevor-FINALWe’re excited to announce the release of our most recent Ploughshares Solo, “The Detroit Frankfurt School Discussion Group” by Douglas Trevor. In our Ploughshares Solos series, we publish longer stories and essays first in an affordable, digital format, and then in our annual Ploughshares Solos Omnibus Series. For more information and some great reading material, check out our previously published Solos or the Ploughshares Solos Omnibus Volume 3.

About “The Detroit Frankfurt School Discussion Group” 

Colin, a newly divorced lecturer of critical theory, wants to spice up his life. He attempts to learn Russian, gives online dating a go, and even entertains the idea of becoming an alcoholic—but nothing sticks. So when two young women he’s never met before ask him to party, he ignores the red flags and climbs into their car. Almost as quickly as they pull away from the curb, Colin learns they’re not headed to a party: they’re headed to an abandoned building in Detroit to discuss the Frankfurt School of Critical Theory. And Colin is slated to be the guest speaker, whether he likes it or not.

“The Detroit Frankfurt School Discussion Group” is available on pshares.org for $2.99.Continue Reading

New Ploughshares Solo: “Confession” by Bill Roorbach

Roorbach-LoResWe’re excited to announce the release of our most recent Ploughshares Solo, “Confession” by Bill Roorbach! Ploughshares Solos are stories and essays too long for our traditional print journal that we publish in an affordable, digital format nine times a year. For more information and some great reading material, check out our previously published Solos, or the just-released Ploughshares Solos Omnibus Volume 3.

About “Confession”

When asked out by a pastor, the sarcastic narrator of “Confession” lets intrigue get the best of her and agrees to a date. The two meet at a bar and instantly develop feelings for each other. Between drinks, the couple gets into a lively discussion of truth, sin, and, much to the narrator’s surprise, sex. Will the confessions revealed over the night bring them closer together, or stop their growing attraction in its tracks?

“Confession” is available on pshares.org for $1.99.Continue Reading

New Ploughshares Solo: “Adopting Sarajevo” by Alexandra Marshall

Marshall_tileWe’re excited to announce the release of our most recent Ploughshares Solo, “Adopting Sarajevo” by Alexandra Marshall! Ploughshares Solos are stories and essays too long for our traditional print journal that we publish in an affordable, digital format nine times a year. For more information and some great reading material, check out our previously published Solos, or the just-released Ploughshares Solos Omnibus Volume 3.

About “Adopting Sarajevo”
Orphaned during the Siege of Sarajevo, Marina—now a teenage figure skating star—returns to Bosnia for the first time since an American family adopted her as a baby. Tag along with Marina as she discovers the true meaning of family, learns about her heritage, and explores the war torn city that could have been her home. 

“Adopting Sarajevo” is available on pshares.org for $1.99.Continue Reading

New Ploughshares Solo: “The Children’s Kingdom” by Ted Kehoe

We’re excited to announce the release of our most recent Ploughshares Solo, “The Children’s Kingdom” by Ted Kehoe! Ploughshares Solos are stories too long to fit into our traditional print journals. They are published digitally first, and are then collected in our annual Ploughshares Solos Omnibus Series. For more information and some great reading material, check out our previously published Solos.

Kehoe-LoResAbout “The Children’s Kingdom”

Addie doesn’t know who left the footprints in the snow outside her house, but she’s convinced it’s someone seeking revenge for the horrific crime her autistic son committed a year ago. Follow Addie as she tries to uncover the trespasser’s identity and come to terms with the actions of a son she loves but can’t understand.

“The Children’s Kingdom” is available on pshares.org for $1.99.

Here’s an excerpt from the Solo:

We went out and looked at the tracks. He took pictures with his phone from every which way, I don’t know what for. He took so many I finally realized it was for my benefit.Continue Reading

New Ploughshares Solo: “Biting the Moon” by Joan Frank

biting the moonWe’re excited to announce the release of our newest Ploughshares Solo, “Biting the Moon” by Joan Frank! In our Ploughshares Solos series, we publish longer stories and essays first in an affordable, digital format, and then in our annual Ploughshares Solos Omnibus Series. For more information and some great reading material, check out our previously published Solos, or the Ploughshares Solos Omnibus Volume 2.

About “Biting the Moon”

It’s been years since the woman in “Biting the Moon” has seen her former lover Felix, a famous, Oscar-winning composer. But upon hearing the news of his sudden death, she mourns his loss by revisiting moments of their former life. Jumping in time from the pair’s first encounter at an artists’ colony to their rendezvous in cities across the US, the path the narrator takes toward acceptance is much like the jazz the couple loved so much: winding, unexpected, and beautiful.

“Biting the Moon” is available on pshares.org for $2.99. Continue Reading

New Ploughshares Solo: “Dead Zone” by Tova Reich

Reich-LoResWe’re excited to announce the release of our most recent Ploughshares Solo, “Dead Zone” by Tova Reich! In our Ploughshares Solos series, we publish longer stories and essays first in an affordable, digital format, and then in our annual Ploughshares Solos Omnibus Series. For more information and some great reading material, check out our previously published Solos, or the Ploughshares Solos Omnibus Volume 2.

About “Dead Zone”
Izzy Gam wants to be buried on the Mount of Olives, known as “the number one place for a Jew to be buried,” as the resurrection is supposed to begin there. Unfortunately, it turns out that his planned resting place is already occupied, as is every other place in Israel that his increasingly flustered family tries to put him. Beginning with the romance between the legless Izzy and the narrator’s great-grandmother Judi, and ending with the termination of the existence of Israel, acclaimed novelist Tova Reich takes us on a rollicking trip through the Holy Land and the search for an unspoiled place to rest.

“Dead Zone” is available on pshares.org for $1.99.Continue Reading

New Ploughshares Solo: “Heading for a Total Eclipse” by John Philip Drury

Drury-Final-LoResWe are excited to announce the publication of our most recent Ploughshares Solo, “Heading for a Total Eclipse” by John Philip Drury! In our Ploughshares Solos series, we publish longer stories and essays first in an affordable, digital format, and then in our annual Ploughshares Solos Omnibus Series. For more information and some great reading material, check out our previously published Solos, or the Ploughshares Solos Omnibus Volume 2.

About “Heading for a Total Eclipse”
In this touching and humorous essay, John Philip Drury recounts coming of age during the Vietnam Era. With a low draft number and an exit from college looming, Drury faces the imminent possibility of fighting in a war that he opposes. In the meantime, he tries and abandons a dream to become a songwriter, labors mightily to lose his virginity, and looks to the adult world around him for models of what he most wants to be—an artist. “Heading for a Total Eclipse” takes a look at a young man’s attempt to maintain his integrity during a turbulent era, and in the face of impossible choices.

“Heading for a Total Eclipse” is available on Pshares.org for $1.99.

Here’s an excerpt from the Solo:

As the program began, a congressman who served on the Armed Services Committee reached down into a glass barrel and pulled up a blue capsule bearing the name of a month and a day. He was followed by young people, both male and female, who extracted the rest of the birthdays, plunging their arms into the big fishbowl. It didn’t take long for the suspense to end, since my birthday, June 4, emerged as number 20.

I was stunned at my misfortune. I wasn’t looking forward to returning to the one-bedroom apartment I shared with another sophomore, Glenn Twilley, whose lottery number turned out to be 366, the very last birthday selected by Selective Service, the extra day of leap-year. I felt annoyed, even bitter about the irony, since he was a Republican who supported the war—not that he wanted to go to Vietnam and do any fighting himself.

It struck me as ironic that earlier that year I had written, in a letter to a friend, “If I’m drafted I won’t go; if I go, I’ll enlist.” Now I was number 20, assured of being drafted if I ever lost my student deferment. On campus, male classmates greeted each other not with their names but with their numbers, laughing if they got above 200, groaning if they didn’t break into triple digits. Life, after all, was a numbers racket.Continue Reading