Sunday, March 25, 2012

In Print

I wanted to share that this Spring I have two pieces of writing coming out in print publications. An article on my impressions of a classic randonneuring bike will appear in the Spring 2012 issue of Bicycle Quarterly. And a reworked version of a post from last December, "Emotional Landscapes," has been included in Taking the Lane, Volume 6: Lines on the Map. If you are interested in reading these pieces and the excellent works alongside which they appear, both issues are now available to order.

Since the start of this blog I've been reluctant to commit my bicycle-related writing to print. I did not feel the writing here was good enough, and I also didn't think the style really flowed outside of the blog format. But working on the Bicycle Quarterly article and interacting with Jan Heine made me aware that I've accumulated material - stories, thoughts, ideas - that do not fit the blog format and would work better in print.

Posts like Emotional Landscapes and this earlier one about Vienna are examples of writing that really should have been longer and more nuanced, adapted for the blog only because I had no other outlet for it. Publishing a slightly altered version of the former in Taking the Lane allowed me to test the waters as to whether I felt comfortable turning non-committal blog snippets into real pieces of writing.

I think that one of my readers, who comments here as "Spindizzy" (aka Jon Gehman the rackmaker) is a genius writer who owes it to the world to write a book about life and bicycles. His comments alone are literature as far as I am concerned. I've also been inspired by the writing of Tim Krabbé, Grant Petersen and Bill Strickland (in a way I see the latter two as flip sides of the same coin), and reading their stuff has made me realise that distinguishing "bicycle writing" from "literature" is silly and a defense mechanism. I've written stuff that has been published before. But with this blog I wanted to de-stress and take the pressure off with what I initially thought was a lighthearted topic. Imagine my surprise.

The Spring 2012 issue of Bicycle Quarterly and Taking the Lane, Volume 6 are now available, and those who order should receive theirs some time in April. I derive no financial benefit from the sales of either, but invite you to support these small, independent publications.

23 comments:

  1. Congratulations on being published. I take Bicycle Quarterly (it's an amazing publication) and am looking forward to reading your article. Keep up the great blog!

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  2. Congratulations, Velouria! As always, you sound intelligent, engaging, and exceedingly modest. I read your blog regularly and appreciate the beautiful photos, all the great information, your curiosity, and the way your courteous voice sets the tone, especially when it comes to topics that on other biking blogs too often elicit torrents of snark and contumely.

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  3. Congradulations on being in print,my friend! :)

    The Disabled Cyclist

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  4. So, should we be calling you "Constance Winters" from now on, or is that only in print? ;-)

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  5. Will you be reviewing Grant Petersen's book?

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    1. Yes, I think it's on its way to me. Also Bill Strickland's 10 Points.

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  6. The latest volume of Taking the Lane looks promising, I will be getting it for sure.

    I've been considering a Bicycle Quarterly subscription, but don't think I am ready yet.

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    1. I am also looking forward to reading this volume of TTL, and love the cover design.

      You can buy individual issues of BQ and don't need to subscribe for a year in order to get the current issue.

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  7. Velouria, you are always so modest about your writing. Your lively, fun, informative and generous style is a treat. I am too embarrassed to list all the practical tips, insights, technical info and philosophical values that you have shared that have made me a better and more enthusiastic biker but they are considerable. Your writing is so accessible and points of view so interesting. Thank you so much. I'm looking forward to my BQ and I've just received my confirming email from Taking the Lane Media.
    Jim Duncan

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  8. If you wanted to "de-stress and take the pressure off you should have taken to writing about something mundane that you couldn't care less about and disseminated it through a blog about something else so that no one that DID care about it would ever see it. As it was you decided to explore one of the most addictive pursuits of wonky middle class white men and present yourself as a young woman looking for guidance and advice. I have no sympathy whatsoever.

    I for one owe you about a zillion thanks for creating this space. I hadn't written anything longer than an excuse for not writing a term paper since I dropped out of school during the(first)Reagan administration.
    The opportunity to participate in the discussions and offer observations and experiences from my(half)VAST well of knowledge about bikes was why I discovered how much I like to write. As an Artist I realized a long time ago that there are a heap of waiters in Nashville that sing better than I can draw and I sorta re calibrated my ambitions in that area. Thanks to you I now wake up every morning knowing I'm one day closer to fame and fortune in the lucrative field of literature! I'm so excited! Can I get paid BEFORE I actually write something, and how many books about coaster-brakes do you think the market will bear?

    Spindizzy

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    1. "you decided to explore one of the most addictive pursuits of wonky middle class white men and present yourself as a young woman looking for guidance and advice"

      that's an interesting wonky middle class white man's interpretation : )

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  9. agreed that spindizzy's comments are genius, would buy his book in a heartbeat!

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  10. This is a good start, although in the future I'd love to see some new material from you in print and not just edited versions of blog posts. Keep us posted!

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    1. Just to clarify - the Bicycle Quarterly article was written from scratch; it is not an edited version of a blog post.

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  11. This is very good, for you and for all of us who like reading your take on things.
    I look forward to reading both articles.
    Also looking forward to the Rev. Spindizzy committing further acts of Literature.

    Now if we could just get GroundRound Jim to do some podcasts....

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    1. "Now if we could just get GroundRound Jim to do some podcasts...."

      Snorted coffee out of my nose : )

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    2. I heard that! Good, I hope you have a hankie...not!

      One thing for sure it wouldn't be patterned after Mike Daisy's non-retraction. I could do a whole show on pith helmets: from the ridiculous to the sublime.

      Veredictum, thanks! You don't ride a Riv, do you...

      I inch forward to the puter when Spindizzy opens his mouth, though I have to scroll to the bottom to see who the author is first. Time wasted? No. I'd rather read his stuff than any bikey lit as some Willy Wonka/Christopher Lloyd hybrid taking apart rocket engines while sliding star-shaped on ice half-slumped off his seat while thuggish friends snicker...well...how is this not interesting?

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  12. Congratulations Velouria!

    Nice to know who Spindizzy is. I too enjoy GroundRound Jim's comments, not to mention Peppy.

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    1. Which parts of the Bicycle Quarterly article did Peppy write?

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  13. Congratulations, and Peppy is adorable. Reminds me of my late Zeddy.
    MB

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