The Story Behind “bind” by Chris Murray

CMurray Headshot

Today’s post is written by Chris Murray. We published two of her poems from ‘bind’ in our Spring 2017 issue.  ‘bind’ is a short book, that is not quite a chapbook. It is set on peripheries, within self-imposed psychic borders and it is limited by human psychological boundaries, concerns that operate in silence for the most part. ‘bind’ takes […]

Continue reading...

The Story Behind “Layers” by Lita Kurth


Today’s post is written by Lita Kurth. We published her poem “Layers” in our Spring 2017 issue.  In 1996, the year she won the Nobel Prize, I found Wislawa Szymborska’s “Some Like Poetry” on the Xerox machine at the university where I worked. Captivated, I promptly used it in my Composition classes to illustrate how the […]

Continue reading...

Seeking Submissions for Our 10th Issue—Fall 2017


Ten. Our tenth issue. Ten. October 2017. Ten. 1 + 2 + 3 + 4. Ten commandments. Ten plagues. Ten years—a decade. Ten. The completion of a cycle. Compose: A Journal of Simply Good Writing is now considering submissions for our tenth issue—Fall 2017. We’re on the lookout for pieces that address the theme “Ten” […]

Continue reading...

Introducing Our Spring 2017 Contributors


Our Spring 2017 issue is now well under way, and we hope to launch very soon! If you’ve submitted work to us and haven’t yet received a response, your work is being considered for our Fall 2017 issue. We’re always reading, so send us your poetry, fiction, creative nonfiction, photography and art anytime. Submission guidelines can be […]

Continue reading...

The Story Behind “Across Which the World” by Laura McCullough

Laura McCullough Photo

Today’s post is written by Laura McCullough. We published her poem “Across Which the World” in our Fall 2016 issue.  It’s hard to discuss my own work. I think if I could say what I needed to say in another form, I would. A poem is what I write because I can’t say something any other […]

Continue reading...

The Story Behind “Shepherding” by Michael Overa

Michael Overa

Today’s post is written by Michael Overa. We published his short story “Shepherding” in our Fall 2016 issue. Memory has always struck me as a rather tenuous thing. Even the healthiest minds muddle and jumble and transpose memories. Inevitably, I struggle with the idea of memory primarily because of my own love-hate relationship with it. I’ve no […]

Continue reading...

The Story Behind ‘Love Letters’ by Mary Leonard


Today’s post is written by Mary Leonard. We published her flash fiction “Love Letters” in our Fall 2016 issue.  Really, “Love Letters” is based on true experiences: the toilet would not flush, a mouse would visit every night, the air conditioning could not be regulated. I never did meet any of the employees of the Physical Plant but […]

Continue reading...

The Story Behind “Two Poems” by Lynn Otto


Today’s post is written by Lynn Otto. We published her poems “Marcescence” and “And After” in our Fall 2016 issue. When my friend Dave read someone’s claim that it’s impossible to write any more good poems about the moon, he wrote a poem about the moon. Someone has probably said something similar about trees. But I […]

Continue reading...

The Story Behind “The Unfaithful Triptych” by Monet Thomas


Today’s post is written by Monet Thomas. We published her creative nonfiction piece “The Unfaithful Triptych” in our Fall 2016 issue.  “The Unfaithful Triptych” is one of several pieces I’ve written styled after a triptych or three pieces of art, usually paintings or photography, hung beside each other and meant to be appreciated together. It was during […]

Continue reading...

Announcing Our 2016 Pushcart Prize Nominees


We are pleased to announce our nominees for the 2016 Pushcart Prize! What is the Pushcart Prize, you ask? “The Pushcart Prize: Best of the Small Presses series, published every year since 1976, is the most honored literary project in America. [H]undreds of presses and thousands of writers of short stories, poetry and essays have […]

Continue reading...