Welcome to another installment of If My Book, the Monkeybicycle feature in which authors compare their recently released books to weird things. This week Suzanne Burns writes about Now It ASeems That I’m Not All Here, her new story collection out from Tailwinds Press.
If Now It Seems That I’m Not All Here were a first date it would start with a kiss at the end and work backwards. (And don’t get any funny ideas. Just one kiss.) Then a trip to the library to look at all the new fiction the woman who works there, and also teaches a class on corset making, arranges like pieces of jewelry. There will be fried fish sandwiches with extra tartar but real napkins, and dessert before and after dinner.
If Now It Seems That I’m Not All Here were a coupon, high-end boxes of chocolates tied in real ribbon would be half-off, even on February 13th.
If Now It Seems That I’m Not All Here were homework, you’d regret putting it off until the last minute.
If Now It Seems That I’m Not All Here were a snow day Thai food would show up on the front porch from the place up the street. There would be an all-day Hammer House of Horror marathon, followed by a mani/pedi, color Winter of Our Discotheque.
If Now It Seems That I’m Not All Here were a salad bar it would only have macaroni salad, cottage cheese, and croutons.
If Now It Seems That I’m Not All Here were a note passed between two fifteen-year-old girls in 1989 in the hall between Health class and Gym, it would tell these two girls not to worry so much about boys. Learn how to crochet. Go to the mall to watch people instead of yourself in the mirrors at Fashion Bug. Eat pizza together after school without removing the cheese. Don’t repeat the rumor about Amber and the tapeworm and Jessica and the Coke bottle.
If Now It Seems That I’m Not All Here were a stationery store, you could buy stamps made of your face and business-sized envelopes in colors like Punk Rock and Tupperware Party.
If Now It Seems That I’m Not All Here were a secret, it would only tell you.
Suzanne Burns is a fiction writer, poet, and competitive baker. Her stories, poems, and cakes have been published by Dzanc Books, appeared in The Chicago Tribune, and on the Best-Of chocolate cake table at the Oregon State Fair. Her most recent book, Now It Seems That I Am Not Here at All, is out now from Tailwinds Press. A new poetry collection, Look at All the Colors Hidden There, debuts later in 2024 from Galileo Books.