We are inordinately grateful to Ryan MacDonald, who created the trailer for Ryan Ridge’s and Mel Bosworth’s Camouflage Country, which releases tomorrow!
Ahead of its pre-release next Tuesday, November 24th, we thought we’d stay true to the freewheelin’ spirit of Camouflage Country and have a little fun–and also give you the chance to win signed copies!
Here’s how it works:
Below you will find four groups of sentences drawn directly from the book. Because the collection was a true collaboration between Ryan Ridge & Mel Bosworth, it’s tricky to determine where one author ends and the other begins. Which is exactly what Queen’s Ferry is asking you to do: tell us who wrote the sentences that follow–two groups belong to Ryan, two to Mel–by emailing email@example.com; the first 4 correct responders (1 per group) will each receive a signed copy.
1) At the time I believed in love and I reckon I still do.
2) And farther off still, I can nearly hear the low rumble of something bigger than you on your loudest day.
3) We had fantastic mohawks and the world by the balls.
4) Through the dust that kicked up all around, my eyes kept returning to the horses tethered nearby, their long faces blank and beautiful as catwalk amnesiacs.
5) There we were in our minds, skin naked and pink, teeth-tearing our favorite concert tees and slam-dancing with mechanics, each of us happier and each of us the wiser for it.
6) And when the day finally comes, the reunion signal will be easy because I practice it all the time inside the saddest boxcar: knees to chest, hug forever.
7) The groove wrapped the room like a second skin and my Memphis blood took us all home.
8) Later, pensive and buzzed beside the crackle of our campfire, I took a cool swallow of Michelob Ultra, fired a snot rocket into the darkness, and told my father he’d make a damn fine mother.
9) We rolled up our lives like sleeping bags and headed toward brighter colors and louder music.
10) Outside, the world was thick with a fog that took me in like a birthday party, all cheers and backslaps and frosting stabbed with fire.
1) Everyone was a star and nothing is real.
2) I went to bed early because it was never too late.
3) Outside the rain fell like empires.
4) We are actors, dammit, children who never ceased believing.
5) Through the giant bagel marquee I watched the sunset burst from the center and thought how everything good comes from the center.
6) The cork played the room like a pinball machine.
7) Another man dousing himself in kerosene as his wife bursts into laughter from the flames.
8) My manifesto was getting lots of likes on Facebook and my Twitter followers had shot to triple digits in the few hours since I’d issued my ultimate ultimatum.
9) Martyrs happen all the time, but a modern saint is about as rare as a one-armed gymnast.
10) I didn’t believe in monsters until my sister brought one home.
1) Now the blue moon lit our skin like butane.
2) With the exception of stating that there was no digital Satan, the producers were super tightlipped about how the Virgin birth scene was accomplished.
3) Such was my beginning, long before my funding for Antarctica, long before those strippers grazed my sagging skin with their chests, breasts, and hearts.
4) We were high as Balsa-wood flyers.
5) What I got instead was a spectacular view of galaxies’ slow-motion salsa dancing and I guess I can think of worse ways to spend a few lifetimes.
6) I hoped you’d answer but all I got was the pounding sound of everything that was ever wrong.
7) The way I saw it we were like our American Adventure cabin coupon: innocent until proven unredeemable and I’d never felt more born.
8) The moon pushed beneath the horizon and rang like the close of the second round of a fight scheduled for fifteen.
9) The answer was obvious but no one would admit it: it was time to put our guns down and go home, collect our sashes from pot-bellied oaks, and press our own pot bellies into American dinner tables.
10) I turned my attention back to the darkening field, to the uninspired music, and to whatever patriotic dishonesty came next.
1) And I jumped out the window as the room became flames.
2) He’d constructed a sensory deprivation tank out of old washing machine parts and a children’s pool.
3) We married beneath a waterfall, honeymooned at the end of a rainbow.
4) I went to the store and picked up a forty of Olde English, a box of menthols, and a Shake Weight.
5) It was raining animals and we sweated nude in the glass-walled parlor of my attorney’s home in the hills.
6) Whoa, whoa, whoa.
7) The moon looked like a dark disc with light leaking from it.
8) We wanted to sleep in our own beds, and for once, we wanted to wake up in a world that didn’t seem shot.
9) He had eyes like shiny new shovels and when no one was looking I suspected he dug deep into the pharmacy stash.
10) I was a man without a plan––hungover and already half-drunk––and just stupid enough to think everything was going to be all right.
Come one, come all!
Here it is: the final book of 2015 (Dec. 22), ready for its close-up. A truly collaborative compilation, Camouflage Country brings together authors Ryan Ridge & Mel Bosworth and the illustrations of Jacob Heustis in a collection of microfictions/prose poems described by Kathleen Rooney (O, Democracy!) as “a pinball machine of a book, full of bounce and light and crazy ricochets: sentences start, you don’t know where they’ll end up, and this dynamic unpredictability is what gives this collection its life and its victory.”
This one is a little late due to all our announcements in February, but here is the next issue of The Crossing:
A web-only version of The Crossing will appear each month, and is downloadable in PDF form here. Those who subscribe to receive e-mail updates of The Crossing will receive a promotional code to be used at check-out during the lifespan of each issue.
Camouflage Country will stand as Queen’s Ferry Press’ final release of 2015.
Plano, TX—February 27, 2015 Queen’s Ferry Press, an independent publisher providing a venue for fine literary fiction, announced it will publish a co-authored collection by Ryan Ridge and Mel Bosworth.
“QFP releases are always the perfect mixture of perfect mixtures: work that’s both evocative and innovative, beautiful and strange,” said Ridge. “To be a part of this party is a privilege and an honor. Let’s dance!”
“I am thrilled!” said Bosworth. “I couldn’t be more pleased and excited to be working with Queen’s Ferry Press. Yes!”
To get an idea of the collection, Camouflage Country, picture Horatio Alger’s greatest nightmares transcribed by the brothers Grimm. Imagine Hemingway’s In Our Time except in our time. See: ‘The Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave’ scream past on a bumper sticker affixed to the back of an F-16. Camouflage Country is one hundred forty-five afterburner blasts of postmodern Americana further fueled by fifty illustrations by the artist Jacob Heustis. Excerpts have appeared in The Santa Monica Review, Hobart, Sleeping Fish, Passages North, McSweeney’s Small Chair, Tin House, Big Lucks, and elsewhere.
Camouflage Country will release in December, 2015.
About the Authors:
Ryan Ridge is the author of the story collection Hunters & Gamblers, the poetry collection Ox, as well as the chapbooks Hey, it’s America and 22nd Century Man. His latest book, American Homes, is out from the University of Michigan Press as part of their new 21st Century Prose series. Past work in PANK, DIAGRAM, Flaunt Magazine, Salt Hill, The Los Angeles Review, The Mississippi Review, Fanzine, and elsewhere. A former editor-in-chief of Faultline, he now edits Juked alongside his wife, Ashley Farmer. He is currently a visiting professor of creative writing at the University of Louisville.
Mel Bosworth is the author of the novel Freight and the poetry chapbook Every Laundromat in the World. His work has appeared in Hayden’s Ferry Review, Per Contra, New World Writing, and Melville House, among others. Mel’s book reviews have appeared in HTMLGIANT, The Lit Pub, and American Book Review. He is the series editor for the Wigleaf Top 50 (2015) and the creator & curator of the Small Press Book Review. Mel lives, breathes, writes, and works in Western Massachusetts.
About the Artist:
Jacob Heustis is a native of Louisville, Kentucky, where he lives and works. In 2004, he had his first solo exhibition at Swanson Reed Contemporary and has shown in numerous group exhibitions and solo shows since. He has also designed album covers for the indie bands Wax Fang, Silver Tongues, and Whistle Peak, among others. His work is held by several public and private collections.
Founded in 2011 as an independent publisher, Queen’s Ferry Press specializes in literary fiction. The press currently releases 6–12 titles a year, many from debut authors, and is the publisher of Shadows of Men, the 2013 recipient of the TIL Steven Turner Award for Best Work of First Fiction. For book updates please contact Kevin Wehmueller, Marketing & Publicity of Queen’s Ferry Press, or visit www.queensferrypress.com.
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Media Contact: Kevin Wehmueller, Marketing & Publicity