Amid the looming credit crisis, a small group of Iraq and Afghan war veterans sit together in a cramped New York City apartment. As the soldiers grapple with deep emotional and physical wounds, they evolve a therapeutic speaking game that helps them listen to their comrades, and to freely discuss their experiences at war.
- To play, categories—some humorous, others serious—are scribbled on scraps of paper, crumpled up and thrown into a hat. The players then take turns drawing prompts, speaking spontaneously and taking notes. The veterans call their game “Monologue…”
Taken straight from the pages of Jeffrey F. Barken’s current work in progress, a novel, Monologging.org, brings his character’s fictional game to life on a local-global scale.
By evoking this game and other models for intensive, two-way, creative communication, Monologging.org seeks to build an international community of writers and artists and to provide a social context for their work. The online magazine already abounds with opportunities for artistic collaboration, provides promotional assistance, as well as an engaged, critical audience. Local events like Gallery Nights, readings, and other public venues hosted on the the site initiate an interactive dialogue that can easily be brought down off the net and presented on a local level.
Jeffrey F. Barken, editor and founder of Monologging.org, is a novelist and a reporter. He is the author of “This Year in Jerusalem,” a collection of fiction stories loosely based on his experiences as a kibbutz volunteer in Israel, 2009-10. In 2013 Jeffrey traveled to Europe and Israel to conduct a promotional book tour for his self-designed and self-published book. He has recently returned to New York City where he is completing work on a new novel.
As a freelance reporter for JNS.org, a Houston-based publication that solicits and distributes Jewish interest news stories to English papers around the world, Jeffrey regularly reports on politics, economics, education, medicine and technology topics, as well as provides critical book and arts reviews, travel and sports stories. Click below for a full list of the author’s past publications: