Dear Readers, Creatives and Fans.
It has been far too long. The road had its twists and turns; unexpected roadblocks; difficult issues that reared its head to foretell the demise of aaduna.
In truth, there were challenging circumstances that delayed the fall 2019 issue and that compelled my colleagues and I to think through the intricacies of mounting a combined issue in early 2020. As an all-volunteer literary initiative, we remain routinely faced with situations that we cannot readily control. But we stay committed to finding the strategic pathway to deliver intriguing words, captivating voices, diverse themes, and enlightening images. aaduna will always reflect a global and multicultural perspective. And while the journal was dormant, aaduna, Inc. was not.
The 2019 fifth annual fundraiser was a spirited, magical sold-out success. Convened on Halloween at the Cayuga Museum’s Carriage House Theater in Auburn, NY, the gala featured live music by The Berny “PChop” Williford Trio; Halloween inspired opening dances by the Sisterhood of the Traveling Broom; a mysterious MC, named “Sweet Daddy Beaujolais” from the mystical depths of New Orleans, and two rounds of inspirational poetic words from Karen Faris, Doug Curry, Tamara J. Madison, Howard Nelson and Cyd Charisse Fulton. Costumed guests were able to wander through an intriguing life-size art exhibition of “Boneheads.”
On November 1st to celebrate Auburn’s “First Friday” event, Tamara J. Madison conducted an instructive and lively writing workshop. In a complement event, Vanessa Johnson weaved her inspiring poetic words with musical accompaniment from Berny Williford at the recently opened NYS Equal Rights Heritage Center across the street from Auburn’s Memorial City Hall.
As 2019 morphed into 2020, aaduna was committed to producing a special double 2020 issue. And then the pandemic surged and ravaged the world. However…
Once again, aaduna celebrated National Poetry Month in April. Using the official blog, a poet and work was presented daily with two poets kicking off and then bringing closure to this annual journal ritual. April was also Jazz Appreciation Month. The decision was made to position that recognition to May and in doing so, we then decided to publish a series of jazz essays that chronicled the top ten jazz records of aaduna contributing editor, Austin C. Morgan. Those essays are in this issue.
And we have not abandoned the strategic long-range plan to create a writer’s retreat center in Auburn, New York. We will keep you posted on that initiative.
aaduna, Inc. also got its feet wet in the print publication arena with the publication of “The Death of Compassion” a collection of poetry and visual images by Rochester, NY based Karen Faris. Possibly prior to the publication, Ms. Faris had joined the editorial team as a contributing editor. Interestingly, this print endeavor was positioned as a limited edition, signed, and dated contribution to the poetic canon. Print publications may be another initiative that will be pursued over the next few years especially if we survive the ravages of “19” and its impact on readings and group sessions.
So, it appears that…
We are back “against all odds!”
We addressed obstacles and unexpected issues large and small. We know we are better positioned to handle unplanned situations. We know, time will tell. You will be the judge and the creatives who have supported the journal since 2010 will decide if our efforts are worth their ongoing artistic contributions.
We do not plan a repeat of the fall 2019 period and have instituted strategic operational remedies. Some changes you will take note of, others will be so small, you will by-pass those adjustments. Bottom line.
aaduna will continue to manifest a viable publication platform for creatives whose stories and images will permeate your consciousness and how you view the world around you.