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  • Litro #148: The Going Home issue - Letter from the Editor
    that has been created by her adopted parents finding her home in these parents In GC Perry s A New Place on The Map a father re visits his fractured family and finds his home in the family he is separated from Kevin Baker takes us to the Far East with his essay Chinese Hamburgers the smells and bustle of the Chinese markets the familiar physical space gives the character his meaning of home Inspired by a BBC documentary following a year in the life of a container ship Patricia Morris I Heart Containers tells the story of these well travelled containers and the untold stories and secrets they contain Brad Ellis s Listings tells the tale of a couple desperately seeking the perfect home told through the eyes of an estate agent In Mendacities Michael Cohen gives a dark tale of a woman who imagines murdering her husband and reveals the paths our minds travel to find our way home Polish writer Grazyna Plebanek personal essay Going Home tells of Plebanek s time spent between the place she calls home Brussels and the country she was born Poland Finally in our author conversation this month well not so much a conversation but a quick fire round of four questions is with award winning Korean US writer Steph Cha Wishing you all a happy and pleasant journey home for the holidays where ever home is for you Until 2016 Editor in Chief Eric Akoto About Eric Akoto Eric Akoto is Publisher and Editor in Chief of Litro Magazine His passions lie in progressive politics freedom of expression quality independence in arts and journalism social enterprise secularism good technology and above all the power of fiction to connect and bring a level of empathy to different peoples With a journalistic background his writing has featured in various magazines and contributed to various books he also curates and comperes at festivals such as The Latitude Festival and the Hay Festival The first thing he does when visiting a city is to don a pair of trainers and go for a jog around the city He highly recommends a morning meditation to start your day Mail Web Twitter More Posts 15 Comments comments Prev Litro 147 The Space issue Letter from the Editor Next Litro 149 The Love issue Letter from the Editor Related Posts Feature Film From Up On Poppy Hill Exhuming the American Dream Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas and American Psycho William Shakespeare s Dangerous Liaisons Litro TV Recent Posts Bringing Up Baby In the Night Time Before the Sun Rises at the Gate Theatre True Love in Los Angeles A R BY ANY OTHER NAME The Echo Travelling in Fiji The Litro Blog View Archive 11th February 2016 Litro 149 The Love issue Letter from the Editor By Eric Akoto Love we spend our lives craving it in one form or another searching for it and talking about it Its meaning is felt more than it is clearly

    Original URL path: http://www.litro.co.uk/2015/12/67310/ (2016-02-15)
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  • Litro #149: The Love issue
    the Night Time Before the Sun Rises at the Gate Theatre True Love in Los Angeles A R BY ANY OTHER NAME The Echo Travelling in Fiji The Litro Blog View Archive 11th February 2016 Litro 149 The Love issue Letter from the Editor By Eric Akoto Love we spend our lives craving it in one form or another searching for it and talking about it Its meaning is felt more than it is clearly expressed Some call it the greatest virtue Continue reading 9th December 2015 Litro 148 The Going Home issue Letter from the Editor By Eric Akoto This month in Litro 148 we explore the notion of what Going Home means to us Is it a familiar physical space A refuge A feeling A state of mind Or is home actually to be found in another human being maybe your partner your parents How do you know when you have found it Continue reading Contact Us General 44 0 20 3371 9971 info litro co uk Sales Advertising enquiries 44 0 20 3371 9971 Email Sales Magazine Editorial editor litro co uk All Online Editorial online litro co uk Book Reviews Author Interviews reviews litro co uk Film Arts Editorial arts litro co uk Litro Lab Podcast litrolab litro co uk LitroTV litrotv litro co uk Litro Listings listings litro co uk Subscribe Stockists Submissions Advertising Our Team About Litro Litro Magazine is a free short stories and creative arts magazine in print and online Providing a place for readers writers and the broader creative community to discuss various aspects of literature arts and culture through features reviews non themed fiction interviews columns and more Perfect reading for those with busy lives When the first issue of Litro was published in April 2005 the main free paper

    Original URL path: http://www.litro.co.uk/2016/02/litro-149-the-love-issue/ (2016-02-15)
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  • Litro #149: The Love issue - Letter from the Editor
    desire through a navigational chart Holiday Romances we ve all had one Tracey Iceton gives a two sided tale of a holiday romance with Water Love A professor leaves a trail of broken hearts in Annie Dawid s What Happens to Smart Women Stay by Cheryl Powell is a story of love gone wrong or love gone too right It captures that still point of a fleeting moment In Annie Brechin s Essay Dating in Dubai we find how the middle Eastern country deals with love especially one amongst the younger generation often outside marriage given Dubai s constant reinvention and attempts to attract the worlds attention visitors world s tallest tower A fountain you see from outer space the 12 1 miillion square feet shopping mall with such a large expat community Dubai defies normal expectations the islands 7 hotel richest race track so how does it deal with Love outside marriage We come back to London with an essay from Tim Cooke The Black Path a look at love between friends We close the issue with an interview with Douglas Kennedy who sits down with Litro s interviews editor Mia Funk to talk about Love relationships and more About Eric Akoto Eric Akoto is Publisher and Editor in Chief of Litro Magazine His passions lie in progressive politics freedom of expression quality independence in arts and journalism social enterprise secularism good technology and above all the power of fiction to connect and bring a level of empathy to different peoples With a journalistic background his writing has featured in various magazines and contributed to various books he also curates and comperes at festivals such as The Latitude Festival and the Hay Festival The first thing he does when visiting a city is to don a pair of trainers and go for a jog around the city He highly recommends a morning meditation to start your day Mail Web Twitter More Posts 15 Comments comments Prev Litro 149 Love What Happens To Smart Women Next Litro 149 The Love issue Related Posts Diana Brown Wins Underground Flash Fiction Competition Future Fashions Mad Max The Road Warrior Litro 146 Whodunnit Litro TV Recent Posts Bringing Up Baby In the Night Time Before the Sun Rises at the Gate Theatre True Love in Los Angeles A R BY ANY OTHER NAME The Echo Travelling in Fiji The Litro Blog View Archive 11th February 2016 Litro 149 The Love issue Letter from the Editor By Eric Akoto Love we spend our lives craving it in one form or another searching for it and talking about it Its meaning is felt more than it is clearly expressed Some call it the greatest virtue Continue reading 9th December 2015 Litro 148 The Going Home issue Letter from the Editor By Eric Akoto This month in Litro 148 we explore the notion of what Going Home means to us Is it a familiar physical space A refuge A feeling A state of mind Or is

    Original URL path: http://www.litro.co.uk/2016/02/67695/ (2016-02-15)
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  • Litro #149: Love- Q&A: Author | Douglas Kennedy
    I ve often said this to writers Ask questions about other people endlessly I remember one of my ex petite amies here she said to me into the beginning of our little adventure she said Tu pose trop de questions Je ne comprends pas Pourquoi C est de recherche Litro Some authors work requires an element of physical bravery Hemingway Mailer but your writing seems to require a great deal of emotional courage To write yourself so convincingly into the space of a woman s mind you must have a very strong anima animus Kennedy Thank you and thank you for saying that I think you ve hit on something crucial which is that I ve never really written aroman à clef you know something directly from my experience There are two short stories that are somewhat from my life in the short story collection But I ve never written anything directly And yet again you are always writing about yourself Even if you re not writing about something you ve actually lived you re dealing with your own internal weather system as I ve said and we all have one And you re also dealing with the things that keep you up at night the things that worry you the things you haven t been able to get right Your fears And everyone has fears And they all come into play It was funny when I started getting successful as an novelist someone asked me this And I said Well I think I write my own contradictions and then I discovered that they re shared by a lot of people And that what I was writing about really were things that most people lived with in one way or another When I was writing The Big Picture this is something that an English journalist said to me at the time she had just had two kids and she said finally someone is writing about just the hell of white nights and the way the whole dynamic of a couple changes when you have children The sort of feeling of entrapment that you have On his time in Paris Paris just always struck me as a place where if you could actually begin to understand the culture in a proper way not in an expatriate American way Not where you have some French friends but you re kind of living in an Anglophone bubble I guess because of my books and because I insisted on mastering the language I worked very hard at it I think also there s just something in my sensibility that seems to work in France Litro You ve received the Chevalier de l Ordre des Arts et Lettres You re one of France s best selling novelists Why do you think your works have translated so well to the French readership Kennedy I think there are a couple of things Writers work in different cultures for reasons that are frequently mysterious I think what happened

    Original URL path: http://www.litro.co.uk/2016/02/litro-qa-author-douglas-kennedy/ (2016-02-15)
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  • Litro #149: Love - Essay: The Black Path
    frequented by my older brothers a thinner road breaks away it surges up and over a railway track and through an industrial miasma drifting from the untold topography below Trolls have been spotted beneath this bridge At least once a week there or thereabouts a twenty something male with Celtic tattoos crawling up his neck would skate by and salute me Mike boy he d chirp in a thick local accent My name is not Mike No more than 100 feet from the end of the overpass the estate begins Here I d enter a residential maze which has since recurred to me mutated in dreams and emerge minutes later at the Triangle a suburban temple shimmering with the strangeness of its position in time and space This L shaped shopping complex is comprised of a pet store a fish shop a chemist a small supermarket and gangs of ghoulish outlaws lurking round corners conversing in hidden passageways The commercial signage of this place has remained much the same since the late 1980s Finally having circumnavigated the glass exterior of a big body fetish gym topped with corrugated iron I d arrive at the Black Path gaping like the liquorice tongue of a crying raptor I first met Carl by a fire in the woods He was stoned from sucking a lung I was nervous and despairing of the late hour The flames rippled like a mirage in the gulping darkness feeding from a stock of red plastic crates stolen from Co op Sandwiched between a broken shopping trolley and a senior bong smoker spinning tales to the younger lads we talked about school and Liverpool FC His rodent features chewed hungrily on reams of dyslexic words which tumbled unmediated into the atmosphere Over the next two years we spent our evenings and weekends roaming the zones together passing time and causing trouble He became a good friend To the east of the Black Path spread between the primary school and the Triangle is a square half mile of woodland a slither of wild suburbia at its best a warren for the young to explore and claim for themselves which we did There are many patches like this scattered across the estate In recent months I ve read online news stories of sophisticated drug dens fashioned from fallen branches I was reminded of an afternoon break in at the primary school when we hid from a helicopter beneath the foliage of trees We smoked and popped valium until dark I ve also read of barbed wire traps laid for no discernable reason but to wound indiscriminately I thought of a feral ally of ours who had no family and spent weeks at a time sleeping in a tent Carl and I soon grew apart with my parents taking measures to address my failures at school At a private college in the city I composed a poem about elm trees and violence on the Black Path I wrote down some of

    Original URL path: http://www.litro.co.uk/2016/02/the-black-path/ (2016-02-15)
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  • Litro #149: Love: Essay - Dating in Dubai
    you are not married then you face jail and deportation You can of course go abroad to have an abortion To keep the baby you must marry or leave Of course all the penalties rest with the woman whether the issue at stake is immodest dress or a lack of chastity In the case of rape the woman is just as likely to be arrested as the man The legalities and culture of the country are one thing But what about the culture of the expats community itself It s true that such comparative luxury goes to people s heads Dubai residents are known for being consumerist obsessed with brands and bling You can t drive a car you have to have an enormous 4 4 Handbags must look designer even if they are fake Everyone is constantly judging you on your appearance to the point where an abaya seems an attractive relief This obsession with appearance smothers all aspects of life Men and women swap diets and exercise fads but hardly ever books Theatre opera ballet are all scarce and underappreciated In frustration with this superficiality I ve started asking guys who offer to buy me drinks what their favourite books are The overwhelming response is I don t read except articles on the internet Once someone mentioned a Jeffrey Archer tome shudder It s difficult to get to know people in Dubai You meet them on a night out and they swear you ll be best friends forever and never call With intimate relationships it s even worse There is such a glut of gorgeous well toned well tanned young things that everyone is always wondering if they can trade up Commitment just doesn t seem that attractive a scenario If you don t arrive in Dubai in a couple it s not terribly likely that you ll leave in one There are exceptions but they tend to prove the rule As for internet dating forget it Again technically not legal but sites and apps operate Unlike in the west however a lot of them are used by guys looking for prostitutes or married men who want a no strings affair And of course there s the transiency of the place People know they are not going to settle down forever in Dubai So why saddle yourself with partner who might not fit with your long term plans More than that this transiency is woven into the very air so it affects all your interactions even unconsciously To put in the hard work that a real relationship requires goes against the very spirit of everything that people are looking for when they rock up here fun freedom and fast living If you re a young Western guy or even girl respecting a few rules means you can have the most fun filled time of your life For those looking for something more serious even the endless free drinks of Tuesday s ladies nights can pall About Anne Brechin

    Original URL path: http://www.litro.co.uk/2016/02/dating-in-dubai/ (2016-02-15)
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  • A Mouldy Proposal
    you fit on Two words Eight left Let s get on with it So how did it look this morning Chris asked OK I think it s OK I could see it and just about read it but I knew what I was looking for It s going to take a while before it s obvious to anyone else though Do you still think this is a great idea I mean come on you don t really know her do you I know enough Really So she s not in a relationship then Well I don t think so So she might be Yes she might be but she might not And I know what you re going to say next Dead dogs don t eat donuts No that s not what you were going to say What you were going to say is Feint heart never won fair maid Well perhaps but so what it s right isn t it Perhaps but feint heart never left someone covered in a buttery breadcrumb mix with the potential to look even more of an idiot when he gets knocked back Yes that wasn t my finest moment sitting in the butter mix was it And I know what you re saying but I ve got to give it a go I thought you of all people would agree with the carpe diem approach to life And I knew you were going to trot out that Carpe diem cliché Let s hope she decides to seize the day too Words three and four What s that down their Dave Down where Every where s down when you re on a double decker Is it are we taller than that church or that tree or that bank Are we Dave God you re so pedantic Alright I accept the fact that not everywhere is down So what bit of the world underneath us are you referring to You ve missed it Typical You want to debate everything and never see what s in front of you What do you mean by that Nothing it s nothing Is this about all these extra hours you ve been working No look let s not talk about it now Dave please Hmmph What does that mean Oh look there s another one see there on the bus stop ceiling It s the roof No it s a message Oh I see what you mean You re such an arse Dave And you wonder why I ve been working late so much Oh I see The coffee It ll be some coffee chain trying to get us to waste more money What was that you were saying about working late Never mind Dave Never mind Words 7 and 8 Seven across Three three Starts with an O Out of date Out for No right number of characters but it s not a saying darling and crossword answers are generally full of regular sayings Out for isn t one of them Unless you re talking in a cricketing sense It is a saying Daddy Sorry but it s not So why has someone written it on there Where oh I see yes out for Well done but I think the phrase we re looking for it Old Hat see If something is Out of Date it can also be old and we know it starts with O so I think the first word is Old Then because the second word is three letters I can t see that it s anything else than Old Hat Now that gives us the T for nine down seven letters Hold on time to move Moo this is our stop Out for us Very good darling very good come on you don t want to be late for school do you Have you got everything Words 1 and 2 It had taken him 15 years to get to this state but Roger was finally beginning to acknowledge that his friends may be right and that perhaps he was drinking a bit too much He d only ever had one or two blackouts and everyone has those don t they At least that s what he thought so he didn t let them bother him too much It was the hallucination that scared him When he asked her Remember last Thursday night she knew there was some sort of confession coming up Yes we met at The Lion in Clapham for a couple of beers Well I had a couple you had five What of it Well yes that is well Come on what happened Well I think I need to cut down a bit God it must ve been a bad night You told me you were going home when we left what on earth happened Oh no yes I did go home Straight home Bus 137 to Battersea Park Absolutely But it wasn t right Eh You live in Battersea so what was the problem Oh no the bus was right It was just that er well you see Come on just say it Well it s like this there was someone out there Where On the bus Well no not actually on the bus Outside of the bus There are always people outside of buses Not like this though Not looking in the top deck window And saluting You what It was this little man like a goblin and he was on the top of the bus stop with a trowel and a little pot And he d written something Ta fo Ta fo That doesn t mean anything Exactly It was Elvish you see Elvish Well that s what I thought at the time you know after being in The Lion with you all evening But now I ve sobered up a bit I think well you know I think I may have imagined it So there wasn t really an Elf on a bus stop roof writing a

    Original URL path: http://www.litro.co.uk/2016/02/a-mouldy-proposal/ (2016-02-15)
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  • Love by The Month
    will pass May Miranda and Samuel live in a small over furnished flat in Belsize Park There are too many tables and chairs too many curtains and cushions too many ornaments and trinkets It feels as if everything is fighting for breath Guy notices a set of framed photographs on top of the television I see you re a skier he says I try to go every year if I can says Miranda That s me at Méribel And Val d Isère That s Chamonix I d spend the whole winter skiing if I could We generally go to Zermatt don t we Lily Lily s not especially keen on skiing but there are some wonderful walking trails We ve tried Whistler and Aspen Courchevel is divine and so of course is Verbier As before Guy and Miranda talk while Samuel and I sit and listen A time comes however when I feel that Samuel and I should do more than smile at each other My eyes have been drawn to two delicate paintings a landscape and a portrait hanging in a corner I ask Samuel who painted them I did he says You re a painter I m a teacher I teach art Miranda has overheard us It s a terrible waste of his talent she says I enjoy teaching I know you enjoy it Sam but Miranda is about to say more but stops herself It s clear this is a conversation she and Samuel have often had before I stand up and go to look at the paintings in the corner After a moment Samuel joins me They re lovely I say Thank you says Samuel But I didn t stop in time What do you mean It s difficult to know when a painting s finished I went on working on them when I should have stopped It s a problem I have Well I like them I say You re very kind says Samuel I m not being kind I say Cézanne never finished a painting says Samuel He went as far as he thought he could and then he abandoned it Perhaps I should try to model myself on Cézanne Perhaps you should The same kind smile Miranda and Guy have been talking about tennis a passion they both seem to share It has been another pleasant evening June Guy hasn t been travelling this month but I m as lonely as ever It s my fault I needn t be here my own Guy had tickets for Wimbledon and asked me if I d like to go with him I know Wimbledon isn t really your thing Lily but I thanked him but as Guy knows sport bores me In the event it s been raining and there has been no play Guy calls me late in the afternoon to say that he s met a business colleague and will be taking him to dinner He doesn t invite me to join them July Miranda and Samuel come to dinner in Highgate The return match says Miranda What Says Guy Oh I see what you mean Miranda looks stunning She is wearing a turquoise shirt and gold earrings and is as animated as ever Guy seems strangely subdued Are his business trips catching up with him After dinner Guy gives Miranda a tour of the estate as he put it She has already said how much she adores the house I love what you ve done with your home Lily she says The truth is I ve done nothing When we moved here from Camden Town Guy insisted on using an interior decorator Jonathan talked to Guy about Sudbury Yellow and Porphyry Pink and Elephant s Breath but scarcely spoke to me at all Guy and Miranda are gone for some time and Samuel and I have an interval of quiet together He needs a little coaxing but soon he s talking about teaching and art and how for him one feeds the other He is it seems not only a painter but a sculptor too When he speaks he smiles and frowns at the same time which I find very engaging Were any of your sculptures on display in your flat I say I didn t notice any No he says I keep them in a lock up Miranda doesn t care much for my sculptures At one point I m not sure when I tell Samuel that he has the eyes of an artist I don t know what I mean by this and it makes him shy But it also seems to please him When Miranda and Guy return they seem excited Miranda says she s had a brilliant idea Every August she and Sam take a gîte in the Lot for three weeks Why don t you and Guy join us She says Guy seems to have agreed to her suggestion which surprises me He travels so much on business he says that except for skiing he generally prefers to take his holidays in England It will be good to go abroad again although I am a little anxious about going on holiday with people we barely know August What have we done I am very confused We established from the start that each of us would do what we wanted and feel under no obligation to do anything together I had my books Samuel had his paints and brushes and Guy and Miranda had both brought tennis racquets The tennis court unfortunately was overgrown with weeds and brambles but Guy found two old bicycles in an outhouse and spent the morning fixing them In the afternoon he asked who would like to join him on a cycling expedition I was reading and Samuel was painting but Miranda said she d be happy to come This became the pattern of our days I read Samuel painted And Miranda and Guy rode off on their bicycles One morning Samuel asked

    Original URL path: http://www.litro.co.uk/2016/02/love-by-the-month/ (2016-02-15)
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