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Oh hai! I can haz haiku?

We Put Words on Paper unofficial SXSW party

By Ashley Moreno, 2:23PM, Thu. Mar. 17, 2011

Oh hai! I can haz haiku?
photo by Amalia Litsa

Former Austinite and STAPLE! veteran Miracle Jones introduced his piece at the We Put Words on Paper unofficial SXSW party, saying, “I once read a short story about sex dolls to a feminist group, and I’ve never been this nervous.”

At the time, I didn’t know why he was so unnerved. Thinking back now, it was the opening act: a haiku-off of epic proportions.

Fact: You and I aren’t cut out for film glitz or rock stardom. Too bad – but you know, that also means babes, fame, and fortune will never burden our easy days at the 9-5. Besides, we can still carve out a tiny piece of the SXSW hoopla. Case in point: On Tuesday night, We Put Words on Paper, a writing cooperative of local poets, short fiction writers, and literary enthusiasts, performed their first public show dubbed a Word Dance Party and Literary Celebration. In addition to a standard open mic, the party (hosted by local writer and editor Amanda Kimmerly) featured word games, improv writing, and a haiku competition. The audience awarded Words on Paper member Eric Hofstetter, the title “Best Haiku-ist” based on these two gems:

"Friend Request from an Ex on Facebook"
Chelsea, sorry but
I can’t accept your friend request.
Bitches be trippin’.

"Whiskey Coke"
Whiskey costs too much
Money to waste on mixing.
Use the rum for that.

Fellow group member, Elizabeth Smythe, came in a close second with the following pieces:

All is fair in love
Canon fodder, broken bones
Trading bullet words

Springtime now has sprung
Something else has sprung out too
I’ll just stay seated.

Miracle Jones, now of the New-York-based group Fiction Circus, headlined the evening, reading his short story "Gene Smoke," about Bad Dima, a Russian gangster privy to the secret to landing any woman worth procuring. Dedicated to supporting new fiction in interesting ways, Fiction Circus holds live readings that feature multimedia presentations, and they publish public submissions online. They’re currently hosting a literary experiment using social media called “Translation Nexus,” which they launched back in February with a short story contest. The project seeks to publicly translate the winning story, “East Meets West: How a Supermarket Thawed the Cold War” by Isla McKetta, through Reddit. You can make our friends at SXSW Interactive proud by helping FC in their translation effort (or just submit an original work for consideration) on their Web site at Fiction Circus. For upcoming events with We Put Words on Paper, look on Facebook or visit WePutWordsonPaper.com.

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