27 Apr 2011, 10:57am

Comments Off on Magnets and Ladders Magazine

Magnets and Ladders Magazine

Active Voices of Writers with Disabilities

This on-line literary magazine was launched in the spring of 2011 with several stories, poems, and essays by authors originally found in the book “Behind Our Eyes, An Anthology…”, published in 2007. The “Magnets and Ladders Magazine” is a venue for writers with a disability to be published; however, it is a literary magazine. Although topics may include disabilities, “Magnets and Ladders” is not a how-to magazine nor a venue to rail against society or a specific group. It is a showcase for the writer’s talents and abilities to shine.
As a member of the editorial staff of this new on-line magazine, I am looking forward to your submissions.
From www.magnetsandladders.org website:
About Behind Our Eyes

Behind Our Eyes, Inc. is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization enhancing the
opportunities for writers with disabilities. Our anthology published in
2007, “Behind Our Eyes: Stories, Poems, and Essays by Writers with
Disabilities,” is available at Amazon.com and from other booksellers. It is
available in recorded and Braille format from the National Library Service
for the Blind and Physically Handicapped. Members meet by teleconference
twice monthly to hear speakers; share work for critique; or receive tips on
accessibility, publication, and suggested areas of interest.

Our mailing list is a low-traffic congenial place to share work in
progress; learn about submission requests; and to ask and answer writing
questions. We are preparing for a second anthology, and would like to have
you come aboard. For the conference phone number and PIN, join our mailing
list by contacting Lisa Busch at
Submission Guidelines

Disabled writers may submit up to three selections per issue. Deadlines are
August 15 for the Fall/Winter issue, and February 15 for the Spring/Summer
issue. Writers must disclose their disability in their biography or in
their work. Biographies may be up to 100 words in length, and should be
written in third-person.

Poetry maximum length is 50 lines. Memoir, fiction, and nonfiction maximum
length is 2500 words. In all instances, our preference is for shorter
lengths than the maximum allowed. Previously published material and
simultaneous submissions are permitted provided you own the copyright to
the work. Please site previous publisher and/or notify if work is accepted

We do not feature advocacy, activist, “how-to,” or “what’s new” articles
regarding disability. Innovative techniques for better writing;
recommendations for classes and conferences; as well as publication success
stories are welcome. Content will include many genres, and will range
beyond the disability theme.

Please Email all submissions to
. Paste
your submission and bio into the body of your Email. Submissions will be
acknowledged within two weeks. You will be notified if your piece is
selected for publication.

Spring/Summer 2011

Editorial and Technical Staff
Coordinating Editor: Marilyn Brandt Smith
Fiction: Lisa Busch, Kate Chamberlin, Valerie Moreno, Marilyn Brandt Smith,
and Abbie Johnson Taylor
Nonfiction: Kate Chamberlin, Valerie Moreno, Nancy Scott, John W. Smith,
and Marilyn Brandt Smith
Poetry: Lisa Busch, Valerie Moreno, Nancy Scott, and Abbie Johnson Taylor
Technical assistant: Jayson Smith
Internet Specialist: Brian Schnabel


16 Apr 2011, 3:20pm

Comments Off on Facebook



I have resisted joining Facebook® for several years. It seems to me to be a precarious social life, a venue for singles to cruise for hits, and predators to hunt on the innocent. Plus, I’d been told that there are so many visuals, my screen reader wouldn’t do a good job of accessing the information. I thought they had a point, but I’m not the type to sit down and let life pass me by.
My husband and 12-year old son set up a Facebook® account for me, inserted my photo posed with my 3-month old grandson, and said I had no friends. Thanks a lot!
My son talked me through signing into my Facebook® page and left the room. Eventually, after many hours of using the up and down arrow, the “tab” to navigate each screen, and listening for something intelligible, I started to get the hang of it…or so I thought.
When my husband came in and asked how I was doing, I snagged him to tell me what was on the screen that JAWS wouldn’t read. He explained that it repeats the name twice, because once is the name of the person and the second is the label under the person’s picture. He explained the difference of “chat”, “message”, and “wall” as best he could. What neither of us could figure out were all the code notations found between the brackets. We decided that our CA computer whiz kid was the only one who could decipher the codes and that they weren’t something we needed to know to function at the superficial level we were on.
I’ve never been one to enjoy small chit-chat, so I’m not sure I’ll continue participating on Facebook®, but I’m enjoying the challenge of learning something new…even if I still don’t have any friends.

8 Apr 2011, 2:23pm

Comments Off on Donkey Basketball…again

Donkey Basketball…again

Donkey Basketball, Again
By Kate Chamberlin

In my Cornucopia column, 03/25/1998 Wayne County STAR Newspaper, I called a member of the Wayne County Humane Society to ask if they had a policy on Donkey Basketball.
“What?” she said. “I’ve never heard of donkey basketball.”
“It is a fund raising event sponsored by the Wayne Central High School Yearbook Committee,” I explained. “A five-person team of humans riding donkeys try to make more baskets than an opposing five-person team of humans who are also riding donkeys.”
Riding is actually a mis-nomer. The person has to be sitting on the donkey for a basket shot to count, but It is rare that any given donkey will knowledgeably trot to your designated basket. Participants, therefor, try to push the donkey, pull it by the halter on it’s head, or clamber up on it’s back and kick it’s flanks to try to get it to move.
The donkeys I saw were hairless on their back from the constant rubbing of jeaned legs sliding on and off. Some white talc was sprinkled on before the game, but, it soon rubbed off leaving very red skin exposed. The crowd yells, stomps and jeers as the humans curse and pummel their asses.
The Wayne County Humane lady referred me to the Wayne County District Attorney’s office, 946-5905. Rick Healy is on the Board of the Humane Society and is handling the case of the alledgedly neglected horses found in Wayne County.

When his office returned my call, they referred me to Ron Storm, an investigating officer with the S.P.C.A., Lollypop Farm, 1-716-223-1330. He was out, but, I talked with
Frank Nezille, also an investigating officer.
He stated flat-out that he has no jurisdiction in Wayne County, only Monroe County, but, he said donkey basketball is not illegal, (such as pit bull or cock fights which are bloody fights that can be to the death).
”Usually an officer would attend the animal event, such as donkey basketball,” he said, “to inspect the animals’ living conditions, how they’re cared for and watch the event to insure no cruelty occurs. Wayne County does not have any investigating officers.”
Ron Jones, the yearbook advisor told me that the donkeys are brought in by the Shaw Brothers from Sayre, PA. They have rubber shoes on their hooves so no special covering is needed for the gym floor and the donkeys will be on the premise about four hours. The outfit supervises their animals during transport and the event. There are, also, lots of Wayne Central adults around during the event.
Mr. Jones also mentioned that the faculty would not be participating this year. The State Education Handbook of Regulations says it is ill-advised for faculty to pit themselves against students.

In chatting with several students, they feel the reason the faculty won’t participate has something to do with the on-going contract negotiations!
I didn’t really think Wayne Central would knowingly do anything illegal. I question the appropriateness of this type of event. There are other kinds of events to raise money for good causes, have fun and build character in ways that do not take advantage of gentle critters put in our stewardship.
When this event takes place, you are likely to witness frustrated students hit their mounts and swear at each other while the crowd cheers. Is this a role model you want your children to participate in and/or imitate?
Perhaps we should support positive role models and activities that we can be proud of in our school rather than donkey basketball.
It is 2011 now and it is unfortunate that this event is still being featured at Wayne Central.

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