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Sunday, December 3, 2017

New Release: Edited by Brenton Booth The Asylum Floor : Literature with a sledgehammer Issue #1 (Lulu, 2017) 94 pages

This new literary journal is edited by Sydney writer Brenton Booth and is devoted to “hard edged writing”. It features mainly poems and short stories by small press luminaries, such as, Wolfgang Carstens, Catfish McDaris, Matt Borczon, Janne Karlsson and Brenton Booth himself.  Perhaps the star of the collection is lesser known outlaw poet “James Decay”. A few previous poems from the Spokane resident can be found on-line in Gutter Eloquence and Midnight Lane Gallery- the latter which is linked below.

Booth explained to me yesterday the idea behind his journal The Asylum Floor: “I was going for something a little different with it. My intention was more pages by each writer to give a clearer picture of them. And to break free of the conservatism of publishing that chokes modern journals.” His only brief to the featured writers was simple, “It is anything goes, as long as it is well written. I told the contributors to only send me the stuff they would normally not bother sending because it says too much etc.”

The collection integrates the work of the six writers and includes many strong pieces. The emphasis is on character portraits and common underground themes, such as, substance abuse, explicit sex, suicide and the madness of everyday living. Interestingly, The Asylum Floor also includes the first published short stories by Epic Rites Press guru Wolf Carstens, the best being “The Mauler”.

Booth is “really not sure if there will ever be another issue” of the journal. “If there is, it will be an annual thing.” This project is ambitious and Booth has stuck his neck out, solidifying his position as a leading Australian underground writer and now editor.

Brenton Booth is interviewed by Marcia Epstein on Talk With ME: (Booth talks about his writing history and processes and reads several of his poems. The audio is dodgy from the Australian feed and you need to be patient to preservere).

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