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Catalog Archive / Spring 2024

Camera Lake

Camera Lake is such a powerful read. Pickett writes relevant, risk-tinged fiction that’s deft with humor and heart. These stories are fresh in form and content—and they will grip you with their fully imagined characters, these flawed Americans who have made the beds they lie in with open eyes.”
—Alyson Hagy, author of Scribe

Unspoken dreams, haphazard choices, and the risks of vulnerability

Fleeing her family, a woman finds unexpected solace in an empty hotel. A therapist struggling to make sense of a shattering professional failure becomes convinced someone is watching his every move. A coach’s disciplinary tactic doesn’t so much backfire as it implodes his players’ lives.

Inhabiting a (mostly) midwestern landscape, Alex Pickett’s characters specialize in breaking rules. Believing themselves to be good people, they try to bend their situations to fit their needs or fulfill their desires. The results are rarely completely disastrous or successful, but are tinged with a humor that rides comfortably alongside embarrassment, regret, and longing.

Pickett’s tensely modulated world hums with the vitality of its characters, balancing restraint and impulse. Again and again, with wry wisdom and rich prose, he leads us to imagine what an individual should do versus what they want to do—and in the process reminds us that it is achingly hard to live up to expectations.

 

Alex Pickett author photo. Alex Pickett is a Wisconsin-born writer based in London and the author of The Restaurant Inspector. His stories have appeared in numerous publications, including The Southern Review, Subtropics, Passages North, and Green Mountains Review.

Alex Pickett's Website - www.rapickett.com

 

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Table of Contents

Practice
At the Twin Pines Motel
Petland
Camera Lake
Props
Glass Monkey
Résumé
Vultures
Perfect Nonsense
Ankle Grabber
Wind
Pharaoh
Scorch the Earth beneath Your Feet
The Vow

 


Of Related Interest


Cover

The Restaurant Inspector
Alex Pickett

The Blondes of Wisconsin: Cover showing the side of an old brick building with blue and yellow letters painted on it.

The Blondes of Wisconsin
Anthony Bukoski

Camera Lake: cover depicting a small island full of trees and a giant camera. A hand stretches towards the island. The image is drawn in stark blue and orange, the subtlest hint of green in the trees. The title text is written in bold white font, partially obscured by the clouds over the island.

Larger images

July 2024
160 pp. 5.5 x 8.5

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Paper $17.95
ISBN 9780299349141
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