Laurels Shares its Philotechnical Difficulties with UST Readers
“Philotechnical Difficulties,” a term that means “difficulties in crafting the art we love,” is the title of the fall 2007 edition of the UST student literary magazine, Laurels. The publication is edited entirely by a student staff, including Assistant Editor and English major, Mary Caro, and Senior Editor and philosophy major Joseph Colvin. Both students are creative writing minors. Colvin comes from a long-time of UST alums and has two pieces of poetry in the magazine. Caro’s distant cousin, Bernie Smiley, wrote the first creative senior thesis in UST history.
“The Laurels has something for everyone,” said Dr. Janet Lowery, Laurels advisor and English professor. “Among the many pieces students have written in the latest magazine, you might stumble across a rebel prophecy about war between machines and humans by Jenny Bravo, or an edgy ode to civilized road rage by Jimmy Nguyen, or a poetic autopsy report on a friend’s drug-overdosed neighbor by Danny Donato, or a short story about a mysterious book in Doherty Library by Jorge Iglesias. The magazine also features work by this year’s Danny Lee Lawrence award winners in poetry and fiction, Johnny Peiffer and Leslie Roberts, respectively. Overall it is a pleasure to read this latest ‘letter to the world’ from our UST students,” said Lowery.
“We called the magazine “Philotechnical Difficulties” to express the creative block that so often accompanies creative writing,” said Colvin. “It is essentially a fancy way of saying ‘writer’s block’ with the pun included for technical difficulties encountered while constructing the magazine. Its purpose is to convey the obstacle that every writer on our magazine staff had to overcome to finish their work.”
“In my poetry, I am trying to express what I am seeing, whether it be a physical experience or even a dream,” said Colvin, who will continue to work as editor for the Laurels in the spring 2008 semester. Caro graduates December 2007, but plans to continue her creative writing work as a teacher in the near future.
“Joey and Mary, as well as the wonderful student staff, operated with such harmonious diligence that the magazine fell together seamlessly,” said Lowery. “As the senior editor, Joey’s sense of humor helped keep the meetings moving smoothly and Mary’s perseverance was central to the production of the magazine. Of special note is the quote Joey found by French Catholic philosopher Jacques Maritain that appears on the last page of the book and is embedded in the cover. Maritain speaks to the idea that the poet ‘is here to suffer the things of this world’ and ‘speak them . . . out.’”
The Laurels is free. For copies of the magazine or for more information, contact the literary magazine staff at email@example.com or Dr. Lowery at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Pictured above right is Jorge Iglesias; pictured left cover of Laurels.