Bartab: An Afterhours Ballad


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Musician, writer, and journalist Cesca Janece Waterfield will release her first full-length collection of short fiction and poetry May 2010. Published by Two-Handed Engine Press (ISBN 13: 978-0-9820020-0-1  ISBN 10: 0-9820020-0-9) Bartab: An Afterhours Ballad is a novel in verse and is the narrative account of a musician couple living in urban Virginia. It is an unblinking look at the sometimes severe terms of artistic ambition crossed with poverty and substance abuse.

The poems and stories comprising it are spare and authentic renderings of life lived on the fringes. Local references to music venues and neighborhoods make Bartab particularly interesting to residents of and visitors to Norfolk and Richmond, Virginia, and New York City.

Advance praise:

from Small Press Reviews “… a pitch-perfect reproduction of the fragmentary nature of memory... Gritty, desperate, passionate, and heartfelt…”

from poet Denise Duhamel: “Cesca Janece Waterfield writes the blues in Bartab: An Afterhours Ballad.  …pays witness to good love and bad love and what we mistake for love.”

In rooms and on highways where the reckless and distracted fly, Bartab moves from the charm of romance and allure of ambition, through the disappointment and fury in their defeat. It even briefly lights the author's intimate perspective in a true-life murder tragedy gnashed in a blitz of media coverage for more than a year. Bartab resonates with readers who have stumbled in pursuit of a dream and from their own blunders.

Readings are scheduled in Richmond and Norfolk, Virginia, Savannah, Georgia, Asheville, North Carolina and New York City. Bartab will be available via online vendors as well as independent brick and mortar booksellers in major cities.

Editors and founders of the young Two-Handed Engine Press (founded 2005) express excitement about Waterfield's first collection. Waterfield has been a freelance journalist for six years and a working musician for fifteen. This is her first full-length book release.

Cesca has been selected three times by ASCAP to receive songwriter grants. Her short fiction and poetry have been published in publications including RVA Magazine, and journals including Blue Collar Review, Powhatan Review, the Charles Review,  and others. She currently lives in Richmond, Virginia.