Sam Hiyate has started an online magazine about love – bad love, good love, unrequited love and its ilk. Don’t talk to me about love, the magazines winking title, covers the topic in everything from interviews to fiction to six word tweets, and a visit to the dot-com will leave you hopeless as it does hopeful. We talked to Hiyate about love and his new venture. Hiyate is also renowned literary agent, and the winner of the Indie Writers Deathmatch scores a consolation with him – we talked to him about that too.
Love is not an untapped topic for artists and writers. What separates our modern state of love from what came before it?
Love — along with art and cultural philosophy — has become post-modern. But I don’t think love in the post-modern age is that different from the love that preceded it. Love as a topic has always been there, but a site that uses love of all stripes as a window hasn’t — like those who came before us, we’re looking for the voices and stories that move us, resonate with us. I suppose after a few years I might be able to say what separates our stories from others, but for now we’re looking for powerful, original and deeply personal work that illuminates the heart and mind.
The magazine has just released its second issue – any honorable mentions so far?
It’s hard to say, but so far I really like the range of material we have, from the very original meeting of a grandson and grandfather in Lee Gowan’s piece, the sense of an one night-stand turning into something deeper in David Gilmour, the poignant moment of a child’s articulation of love in Tracy Mcgilivray’s piece, and the great serialization of Margot Berwin’s erotic novel, Irresistible.
Do you feel that don’t talk to me about love is also about sex, or is love different?
Sex is vital to the species — without it there’s no future generation. Love can be a motivation to sex, but it has so many other dimensions and flavours. The site is about love in general: every kind of love. Not just romantic. I suppose there will be stories that feature an erotic aspect but always within a literary context.
The Deadline for Broken Pencil’s Indie Writers Deathmatch is coming up. For the last few years, the prize has included a consultation with your literary agency, The Rights Factory. What are the benefits of a consultation like this?
My hope is that you guys will bring something to us that we can develop further and find a publisher for. To launch a career. Agencies are always looking for new talent and BP is a great introduction to new writers.
Don’t talk to me about love is currently accepting submissions for its own contest. What kind of writing would you like to see in the submission inbox?
Our deadline is Valentine’s day but we’d love to see pieces (poetry, personal essay, fiction) now. I would love to see stories that move me. Something that makes me laugh or tear-up, or terrify me a bit. Something that after I finish reading it, makes me see the world in a different way than before.