The Works of Jayne Pupek

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Richmond, VA, United States
Jayne Pupek is the author of the novel "Tomato Girl" (Algonquin Books, 2008) and a book of poems titled "Forms of Intercession" (Mayapple Press, 2008). Her writing has appeared in numerous literary journals. In addition to her own writing, Jayne freelances as a ghostwriter, editor and mentor. A Virginia native, Jayne has spent most of her professional life working in the field of mental health.

Contact Jayne

To contact Jayne, email


Tuesday, April 29, 2008


ECTOPLASMIC NECROPOLIS (poetry chapbook) is now available through Blood Pudding Press

Two of my poems, "20 Reason I'm Not Writing Today" and "The Xerox Girls" appear in this collection. I'm delighted to have my poems included with the work of many other fabulous poets.


A 30 page poetry chapbook starring the work of the following oozing literati:

Shane Allison--Aimee DeLong--Brooklyn Copeland--Nava Fader--Adam Fieled--Jeff Roberts--Susan Slaviero--murmurists--Ken Pobo--Suzanne Grazyna--Juliet Cook--Rebecca Loudon--Andrew Lundwall--Daniela Olszewska--Candace Turlington--Misti Rainwater-Lites--Rachel Kendall--J.R. Pearson--Sharon Zetter--Brian Foley--Eddie Watkins--Jayne Pupek--Nicole Cartwright Denison--Melissa Severin--Donora Hillard--Sean Kilpatrick--AnnMarie Eldon--John Moore Williams--Rachel Lisi--John Rocco

Cardstock cover in bright green with sparkles OR neon green OR hot pink OR bright yellow.

Off-white innards.

Ribbon-binding in either furry hot pink OR furry chartreuse OR satiny bright orange OR satiny hot pink OR satiny lime green OR satiny plum OR satiny black with spider webs.

Hand-designed--each & every copy is one-of-a-kind and includes a few unique creative flourishes.

Available individually or as part of a Combo Pack.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

This and That...

It's been a busy week or so as I've worked to redesign and update my website. I'm far from tech savvy, so it took some time, but I'm happy with the results. Take a look here.

I also spent some time updating my submission tracker so I can keep up with which poems I've submitted. I use the submission tracker at Duotrope's. What I really need is a secretary! Okay, I know it's a stretch, but let me dream.

My husband ordered the little Obamakinz doll for me, and it arrived this week. It's absolutely adorable.

Caketrain has accepted my poem, “Dreams (from The Blackbird Series)” for publication. I love this journal and am so thrilled to have a poem forthcoming in the next issue.

I'm having severe "poetry withdrawal syndrome" as I work on my third novel. Writing poems never feels like work to me. Novels, on the other hand, definitely feel like work. I'm making good prgress, though, and hope to have the first draft done in the next two months. I'm well stocked on chocolate, Starbuck's coffee, and red wine. I should survive. Maybe.

Thursday, April 17, 2008


The galley copies of Tomato Girl are here. They arrived at my door yesterday. I'm overjoyed with the way the book looks, and grateful to everyone at Algonquin for their hard work!

The book is now available for preorder at and

Friday, April 11, 2008

The Tax Man Cometh

My youngest son's birthday is today and my parents are visiting tomorrow. That means Sunday is the day to do taxes. If you hear blood-curcling screams and loud bursts of profanity, that would be me. Ignore it.

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

COLDFRONT MAGAZINE: Bryan Stokes II Review of Forms of Intercession


On the last page of Forms of Intercession, Jayne Pupek’s first full-length collection, a short author bio notes that she has spent most of her career as a mental health professional. The off-kilter verse on each of the preceding pages, however, intentionally gives the perception that they were written from within the proverbial padded room. In a time when taboos have themselves become verboten, Pupek manages to recapture in poems about sickness, infidelity and death the same uneasy awkwardness once reserved for discussions of politics, religion and money. Poems such as “Lunch Hour” carry a continuous narrative through stark, startling images of the carnivalesque and unexpected: “I watch / a woman wrestle a dog to the ground. / She wants his bone.”

Divided into three sections, Forms of Intercession opens hesitantly. The first section, also titled “Forms of Intercession,” begins with a disjointed poem of the same name, each stanza of which holds a tightly wound microcosm of a narrative, unrelated to any other. It takes several poems with loosely connecting threads before Pupek settles comfortably into multi-poem ruminations on death and mental illness. She warns in “Walking in the City” that “sometimes there is no absolution. / Scrape the onions off the bread and keep going, / You do what comes next, no matter how ordinary.” Yet there is nothing ordinary about the poems which follow.

Read the rest of the review at Coldfront Magazine.

Memory Keeper's Daughter

Premieres Saturday, April 12 at 9 pm et/pt on LIFETIME

The birth of a child should be the happiest moment in a couple's life. But when a doctor's wife has twins, one of whom has Down syndrome, this physician makes the difficult decision to send one of his babies away. An attending nurse discovers his plan and intervenes, putting into motion events that will haunt the doc, his wife and his son for the next 20 years. This all-star movie features Dermot Mulroney ("The Wedding Date"), Gretchen Mol ("3:10 to Yuma") and two-time Oscar nominee Emily Watson ("Angela's Ashes"). Based on The New York Times best-selling novel, Memory Keeper's Daughter by Kim Edwards.

See clips and read excerpts at Lifetime

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

2008 Pulitzer Prize Winners

Fiction: "The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao," by Junot Diaz (Riverhead Books). Finalists: "Tree of Smoke" by Denis Johnson (Farrar, Straus and Giroux), and "Shakespeare's Kitchen" by Lore Segal (The New Press).

Drama: "August: Osage County," by Tracy Letts. Finalists: "Yellow Face" by David Henry Hwang; "Dying City" by Christopher Shinn.

History: "What Hath God Wrought: the Transformation of America, 1815-1848," by Daniel Walker Howe (Oxford University Press). Finalists: "Nixon and Kissinger: Partners in Power" by Robert Dallek (HarperCollins); "The Coldest Winter: America and the Korean War" by the late David Halberstam (Hyperion).

Biography: "Eden's Outcasts: The Story of Louisa May Alcott and Her Father," by John Matteson (W.W. Norton). Finalists: "The Worlds of Lincoln Kirstein" by Martin Duberman (Alfred A. Knopf); "The Life of Kingsley Amis" by Zachary Leader (Pantheon).

Poetry: "Time and Materials," by Robert Hass (Ecco/HarperCollins) and "Failure," by Philip Schultz (Harcourt). Finalist: "Messenger: New and Selected Poems," 1976-2006" by Ellen Bryant Voigt (W.W. Norton).

General Nonfiction: "The Years of Extermination: Nazi Germany and the Jews, 1939-1945," by Saul Friedlander (HarperCollins). "The Cigarette Century" by Allan Brandt (Basic Books); "The Rest Is Noise: Listening to the Twentieth Century" by Alex Ross (Farrar, Straus and Giroux).

Monday, April 7, 2008

Quote from Jodi Picoult

I read a quote from novelist Jodi Picoult today that I find to be true (at least it is for me):

'Writing is not about being inspired, waiting for the muse to strike. You can always edit something bad. You can't edit something blank. I'm always writing, even when I'm not at my desk. I write on my hands. I used to write on my kids' hands, too, but they don't let me any more. When I'm driving I sometimes write all the way up my arms.'

Read the rest of the article in The Telegraph

Sunday, April 6, 2008


Tequila Sunrise by Mallet M. K.
Tequila Sunrise

The 13 writing promts by Dan Wiencek (posted at McSweeney's) are the most original I've seen yet. Here are the first three...


Write a scene showing a man and a woman arguing over the man's friendship with a former girlfriend. Do not mention the girlfriend, the man, the woman, or the argument.


Write a short scene set at a lake, with trees and shit. Throw some birds in there, too.


Choose your favorite historical figure and imagine if he/she had been led to greatness by the promptings of an invisible imp living behind his or her right ear. Write a story from the point of view of this creature. Where did it come from? What are its goals? Use research to make your story as accurate as possible.

Saturday, April 5, 2008

An Update

Last night's anniversary dinner of scallops in garlic sauce was topped off with gorgeous flowers from husband and a white cake with red roses. Being married definitely has its perks, especially when husband doesn't frown when I eat the icing and skip the cake. Why don't they just make the whole cake from icing? I guess then it wouldn't be cake. Duh.

Since it was our wedding anniversary, I didn't get my usual daily dose of CNN, but I managed to watch some of the speeches the candidates gave on the sad anniversary of Dr. King's assasination. I still cannot belive that John McCain voted AGAINST making Dr. King's birthday a national holiday. How does someone vote against something good? I mean, is McCain against clean air, art museums, and picnics in July? How could anyone be against honoring a man of the greatness, vision, and courage of Dr. Martin Luther King? McCain has spent too many hours in that hot Arixona sun. The man's delusional. This confession will surprise no one, but I wouldn't vote for him if he ran for dog catcher, certainly not for President.

Okay, other news. My poem, "Alaska" appears in the new issue of Tattoo Highway. The image above is from the same issue.

Some other recent acceptances: Kaleidowhirl accepted my poem, "When she Dusts" and Juked has accepted "Speculation." I'll post a reminder when these poems appear.

I never thought I'd make anyone's HOTLIST, but I am pleased to announce that "Tomato Girl" was listed on OVERBOOKED'S hotlist for New and Notable Fiction for 2008. It's a long list, but I'm just glad to be there.

And last, but not least, Dr. Marutham, the Director of the Bharathiar Academy of Tamil Research, has asked for permission to translate some of my poems in Tamil for purposes of teaching his students. Since two of my children were born in India, this is a special honor.

Friday, April 4, 2008

Happy Anniversary!!!!!!!!!

image from

Today is our wedding anniversary!!! Husband and I have been married for 21 years! (I know that makes me sound old, but really, I was still in my training bra and braces when he snatched me. Honest. I swear! HeHe!)

Tonight, it's dinner at the Asian Panda to celebrate....and goodies have already been arriving at the door!!!!!!!!

I recall a co-worker who, upon learning of our engagement, said our marriage wouldn't last SIX months. Hmmm...21 years later...that fool owes me some money!

Thursday, April 3, 2008

On Cell Phones and the Dead

image from Kicks 106.9 Cell Pix

This headline caught my attention: Man Believes Dead Wife is Contacting Him Via Cell Phone. Read story here.

This is one of the reasons that I do not-- and never will-- own a cell phone. I simply don't want dead people calling me.

On a somewhat related note, check out playwright Sara Ruhl's quirky comedy, "Dead Man's Cell Phone," reviewed in The Epoch Times. Read review here.

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Writers' Group Protests U.S. Barring of Author

NEW YORK–An advocacy group for writers appealed to U.S. officials yesterday to review the exclusion of a British author whose most recent book chronicles his years of heavy drug use and visits to prostitutes

Read the rest of the story in

New Issue of Mimesis!

The forthcoming issue of Mimesis is now available for pre-order! Mimesis is an international poetry journal. Editorial tastes lean "slightly towards the less represented and the more experimental, but in the end we are open to any style. It's the quality that matters."

My poem, "Starving Artists," appears in this issue. I am in great company with Ivy Alvarez, Alison Brackenbury, Sam Byfield, Temple Cone, Brooklyn Copeland, Claire Crowther, Amy Groshek, Jane Holland, Luke Kennard, Rupert Loydell, Amy Newman, Samuel Prince, Christian Ward and James Wood.

Artwork from:

John Warwick (cover), Harmony Becker, Michael Costello and Asad T. Syed.

Interview with Luke Kennard.

Plus: various 'small presses' interviewed.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Just Like a Girl: A Manifesta

Some great news! The anthology, "Just Like a Girl:A Manifesta," is available for pre-order through GirlChild Press. My Poem, "Tomboy," appears in this anthology.

From the Girlchild Press site:

"Just Like A Girl" is a rough and tumble, sassy, kick-ass travelogue through the bumpy, powerful, action-packed world of GIRL. A world where girls and women know how to pick themselves up and brush themselves off. These are the clever girls. The funny girls. The girls who know there is no sin in being born one.