Creative Nonfiction18 min citite
Whispers From The Field
YOUNG TREES GLOW with branches that double as lamp posts, bringing gold warmth to the blue light that engulfs the mist-shrouded island of Teldrassil, home of the night elves. Plants and trees in shades of green, pink, purple, and lavender shroud the
Creative Nonfiction12 min citite
Keeping Score
WE’RE NOT SURE if we’re going to make it—through the card game or through this stage of our relationship. I sit at the dining table with my gaming partner, my husband of eight years, Kylie. We are not a fighting couple, but lately, we’ve been having
Creative Nonfiction16 min citite
Never a Sure Bet
MY FATHER’S MOTHER, Ma-Ma, taught me to play mah-jongg at the lucky age of nine. At first, she had refused. Her lips were so taut, her tiny mouth disappeared. “It’s a gambling game,” she spat, as if that should immediately disqualify it. “Why do you
Creative Nonfiction7 min citite
Beautiful Slop
ALMOST ALL OF THEM, at some point in the game, told me to kiss it. One said it with respect, holding eye contact with me and speaking in a low, steady voice. This made me feel as if we were collaborating on something important. There were two men who
Creative Nonfiction13 min citite
Almost Home
LATE ON MY FIRST DAY out of the fallout shelter, I wander into Flatwoods, West Virginia. I can hear weapons fire in the distance, and footsteps, both of which make me wary, but the message that was left for me outside the fallout shelter said to head
Creative Nonfiction12 min citite
Special Time
A FEW MORNINGS AGO, I found myself wandering through my house, searching for my five-year-old son. “Where, oh where, is my beloved Jeffrey?” I cried. “I’m starting to get worried!” What I was feeling, in truth, was not worry—I’d already spotted Jeffr
Creative Nonfiction9 min cititeMotivational
Earning the Ending
I HAVE A VIVID MEMORY of sitting next to my childhood best friend on her plaid couch, watching her older brother conquer his most recent video game obsession. The game, The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, centered around a protagonist named Link, w
Creative Nonfiction10 min citite
Inside, Outside, In Between
WHEN I WAS TWELVE years old and starting to break competitive-swimming records, I read only books about athletes. I started with Lance Armstrong’s It’s Not About the Bike: My Journey Back to Life. After that, Laura Hillenbrand’s Seabiscuit, biographi
Creative Nonfiction7 min citite
All In The Cards
IN CREATIVE WRITING courses, we’re often told that quotidian topics make the best grist for the mill. We’re asked to consider the most mundane of items, the ones we step over in the houses of our memories or don’t notice because they are always there
Creative Nonfiction4 min citite
They’ve Got Rhythm
“STYLE IS a very simple matter: it is all rhythm,” Virginia Woolf wrote in a letter to the poet Vita Sackville-West. “Once you get that, you can’t use the wrong words.” Trying to teach rhythmic prose, however, is a bit like trying to teach a hapless
Creative Nonfiction8 min citite
The Fake MFA Syllabus
Student-Instructor: Geoff Martin Phone: low signal, no landline Office: The Montague Bookmill Contact Hours: 24/7 At the end of a miserable day, instead of grieving my virtual nothing, I can always look at my loaded wastepaper basket and tell myself
Creative Nonfiction3 min citite
From the Editor
I FIRST SAW this machine in the student union building at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh. CMU is a way station in my various running routes, kind of a middle point where I can go to the bathroom, hydrate, and maybe even answer a text or two
Creative Nonfiction10 min citite
The Serious Business of Play: Finding Connection, Meaning, and Sometimes Joy
IT’S NOT ALWAYS EASY to tell someone you’re a game scholar, or that you use public and private dollars to harness the power of games and play for social good. Sometimes the reaction is, “How fun,” tinged with an underlying skepticism suggesting that
Creative Nonfiction11 min citite
QUESTIONS WERE on Matthew’s mind. I’d seen that look on my grandson’s face many times. It was a Saturday evening—the beginning of a sleepover weekend—and the two of us were eating dinner. Stouffer’s lasagna, his favorite. “What if our Milky Way galax
Creative Nonfiction4 min citite
Skin Hunger
ANNE ROYAN is a graduate of Savannah College of Art & Design (MFA), Brown University (BA) and the Columbia Publishing Course at Columbia University. After leaving a job in the fashion department at Harper’s Bazaar in New York City, she spent many mon
Creative Nonfiction15 min citite
Summers Of Urchins And Love
ANNE VISSER NEY is a writer, biologist, and U.S. Coast Guard veteran. Her work has recently appeared in Ruminate, the Fourth River, and Brain, Child, and has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize (fiction) and the Whiting Award (creative nonfiction).
Creative Nonfiction4 min citite
Past Compensation
AMY BOTULA is an advocate and teacher. Her work has been published in The Rumpus and The Manifest-Station, and she is a former columnist for PubliCola. She lives in Portland, Oregon, but holds tight to her Pittsburgh roots. I AM PENELOPE. I am the on
Creative Nonfiction18 min cititePsychology
He Was My First, Too
ROGER TOLLE is an IPSA certified surrogate partner, serving gay and trans men around the country from his home base in Charlottesville, Virginia. With a long practice in bodywork and movement therapy, and a decade of personal investigation and traini
Creative Nonfiction13 min cititeMedical
Recollections of a Fly Sex Therapist
NATALIE VAN HOOSE writes, fishes, and watches insects in her native Florida. Her fiction has appeared in The Southeast Review. I HOLD THE DUBIOUS DISTINCTION of being something of an expert on the sexual behavior of houseflies. This is not due to som
Creative Nonfiction6 min citite
Slipping Away
SUE FAGALDE LICK is the author of Stories Grandma Never Told, Childless by Marriage, and Up Beaver Creek. She lives in South Beach, Oregon, where she is music director at Sacred Heart Church. Sitting next to my husband, Fred, in the hot tub, I watche
Creative Nonfiction7 min citite
5 Tips for Great Sex (Writing)
SUZANNE ROBERTS is the author of the memoir Almost Somewhere (Winner of the National Outdoor Book Award), as well as four collections of poetry. She serves as the current El Dorado County Poet Laureate and teaches for the low residency MFA program in
Creative Nonfiction5 min cititeMusic
The High-Wire Act
JOE MORAN is a professor of English and Cultural History at Liverpool John Moores University. From First You Write a Sentence by Joe Moran, to be published on August 13, 2019 by Penguin Books, an imprint of Penguin Publishing Group, a division of Pen
Creative Nonfiction16 min citite
Exploring The Boundaries
JULIA KOETS is the winner of the 2017 Red Hen Press Nonfiction Award, judged by Mark Doty, for her forthcoming book, The Rib Joint: A Memoir in Essays (November 5, 2019). She is a visiting assistant professor of nonfiction at the University of South
Creative Nonfiction6 min citite
From the Editor
SHE IS IN the hot tub with her husband. His hands are wandering, touching her leg, her thigh. He moves closer, wrapping his legs around her and caressing her breasts, then leaning over for a deep kiss. And they are both more than a little surprised:
Creative Nonfiction10 min citite
A Kink In The Tale: On Libido And The Writing Practice
NICOLA WALDRON is a graduate of Cambridge and the Bennington Writing Seminars. Her work has been published in Post Road Magazine, Los Angeles Review of Books, Assay, and Agni, among others. She currently teaches writing at the University of South Car
Creative Nonfiction6 min citite
Body Language
WINNER! Best Essay Prize M.G. LEIBOWITZ lives in New York, New York. Her poetry has recently appeared in Boxcar Poetry Review, Crab Creek Review, Foundry, and The Journal. She is the recipient of CALYX Journal’s 2016 Lois Cranston Memorial Poetry Pri
Creative Nonfiction8 min citite
When They Start Asking Questions
STEPH AUTERI has written about sexuality for The Atlantic, Vice, Pacific Standard, and other publications. She is the author of A Dirty Word. “What’s that, Mommy?” asks my daughter, pointing to a long, clear plastic canister filled with individually
Creative Nonfiction16 min citite
Secret Museums
RUNNER UP! Best Essay Prize B. PIETRAS is a writer with essays in TriQuarterly, BuzzFeed Reader, Electric Literature, and elsewhere. He is currently at work on a novel. I WAS A FRESHMAN in high school when my religion teacher faced the class and aske
Creative Nonfiction16 min citite
A Tourist at Home
MY WEEKLY PHONE CALL with my mother had been following its routine of meandering family stories and local news. I had given my usual report about the things I was learning in my second year of medical school, and she had asked when I would be coming
Creative Nonfiction8 min citite
Visits To The Border
BEFORE ANYTHING ELSE, there was an idea: an imagined demarcation, long contested but still undefined. So, in 1849, a group of surveyors—half Mexican and half American—set out to finally map the line dividing their two nations. It was, at the time, la
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