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Creative Nonfiction

Creative Nonfiction #70

A Touch of Dim Sum Eating dim sum is an emotional roller coaster—the excitement and exhilaration you get from creative dishes and intense flavors. The servers reveal each dish hidden inside their bamboo steamer in their cart like how Wheel of Fortune hostesses reveal each letter on their puzzle board. You never know what’s inside. […]

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Interviews

Finding Art, Inspiration, and Innovation in an Essay

Interview with Michelle Spokes by Creative Nonfiction Editor Andrew Miller “I’m trying out different versions of the fantasy so it feels right, returning to the beginning of a scene and then varying it. Writing it felt a little like reading a Choose Your Own Adventure book.” “New Girlfriend” is a segmented, primarily chronological essay, with […]

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Creative Nonfiction

Nonfiction, Issue #69

New Girlfriend Legs and ass powerful like a Quarter Horse’s. That ready speed. Her eyes, too, quick on the uptake. Soulful, dark brown eyes. What I notice first. That and the sweep of hair that swings forward when she bends to unleash her dog. A color that blends with the September leaves, a dirty-blond similar […]

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Interviews

The Flintstones, Coffee Table Décor, and Saying No to Outlines

An Interview with Carolyn Pledge-Amaral by Creative Nonfiction Editor Suzanne Guess I’m intrigued with the idea of getting to know my characters and allowing them to tell their own story.   –Carolyn Pledge-Amaral Some writers argue against using pop culture references because they can exclude readers who aren’t familiar with the references. On the flip side, […]

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Creative Nonfiction

Discovery, Environment, and the Physical World

An Interview with Suzanne Siteman by Creative Nonfiction Associate Editor Andrew Miller “I think the physical world is on all of our minds, we often just don’t know where to drill down, what to look at first. That’s our opportunity.” –Suzanne Siteman You expressed valid ecological concerns without over-sentimentalizing. Was that an active decision on […]

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Creative Nonfiction

Nonfiction Issue #66

Holy Water Midnight in Moorea, French Polynesia, and my daughters and I sprawl on the wide weathered planks of the dock beneath our room, the sky studded with stars, the ocean at rest, held together by the saturated black of the night. It is almost as quiet as it is underwater. Blacktip reef sharks frequent […]

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Creative Nonfiction

Nonfiction Issue #65

Solution Phase Every Saturday morning, I take the last Lexapro in my blue pill organizer and then dutifully refill it. 10 mg a day. Them’s the ones that keep you from screamin’, my husband likes to joke in a gravelly voice. Screaming has never been one of my symptoms, but he’s not exactly wrong either. […]

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Creative Nonfiction

Nonfiction Issue #64

It’s Time to Close the Book on My Mother Writing a memoir helped me understand her critical, controlling ways. But now I need my life back. Two hours before she dies, my mother lifts her head and tries to speak but can’t form words. She falls back on her pillow, panting. It stuns me into […]

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Creative Nonfiction

Nonfiction Issue #63

Cut Here Not yet fourteen. Ninth grade. First day. First class. English I. My cover is blown—if not yet to everyone else, then at the very least, to myself.  There will never be a day after this that I’ll be able to tell myself I’m not attracted to girls. I won’t be able to write […]

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Creative Nonfiction

Nonfiction Issue #62

THE PENGUIN PROBLEM She looked like a stick-figure dog, the kind I drew as a child, with a downward-pointed triangle for a snout and two upward-pointed triangle ears. Her seated body, huddled and alert, formed a larger triangle, shaking and pathetic—exactly the kind of pathetic I wanted. The little black-and-white dog was supposed to be […]

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Creative Nonfiction

Nonfiction Issue #61

Snake Bits I’m alone in the passenger seat of a parked car when I see a huge black serpent with a cobra-like head hovering above my side window. Horrified, I stare at its cold green eyes, vacant and unblinking. I’m wondering whether I should just hold very still or fish around for the keys to […]

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Creative Nonfiction

Nonfiction Issue #60

Front Range Triptych   I. Storehouse of the West’s Great Passing On the last Saturday in February, on a day just warm enough for the task at hand, my sisters and I, with our partners and parents, met in Greeley, Colorado, to empty mom and dad’s storage shed. Inside this rented 10 x 25-foot metal […]

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Creative Nonfiction

Creative Nonfiction Issue #59

The Memory Unit Aunt Jo lives in the memory unit of a retirement home outside of Knoxville. It’s new, spacious, with a little café that sells snacks, a cafeteria with menus like a restaurant, and polished hardwood floors. It’s clean, smells good, and is associated with a church next door, where residents can go to […]

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Creative Nonfiction

Nonfiction Issue #58

Devonia Street We walk toward the bend in the road. It is mid-summer, warm—the heat is receding, rolling back slowly like a tide. The light is amber, the sun nearly gone. The cicadas whine from the shade of a lone oak in the hayfield across the street. In my memory, my grandfather shuffles along with […]

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Interviews

Laura Carnes Williams: The Perfect Prompt Led to Intimate Pandemic Recollections

Nonfiction Co-Editor Coty Poynter interviews Issue #57’s nonfiction author Laura Carnes Williams  Find Laura’s work here. “I start the writing process off the page. I get an idea and take it for long walks, shaping it into a story, literally step by step.” —Laura Carnes Williams This essay is intimate, filled with moments of self-reflection. […]

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Creative Nonfiction

Nonfiction Issue #57

The Slow Down Mid-March 2020: My husband and I went to Coleman’s just before everything closed. The restaurant possessed an eerie, desolate quality, like an old western town after a dangerous outlaw had arrived. The waitress approached the table with a brave smile. Did she have COVID? Did we? Apparently, some people could be asymptomatic […]

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Creative Nonfiction

Creative Nonfiction Issue #51

The Long Middle

By Joumana Altallal

 

I jokingly admit to my friend Yasin, over coffee at a bookstore downtown, that all I really want is to write a good Muslim rom-com. Inevitably, we begin the conversation with The Big Sick. And then a single question: “Have you ever been in love?” I’m nervous to answer…
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Interviews

Stars, Luck and Hope

Abi Newhouse interviews
Rémy Ngamije

 

Nonfiction reader Abi Newhouse recently had this exchange with Issue #50 featured nonfiction writer Rémy Ngamije. Here’s what Rémy had to say about the structure of his essay, Namibia’s first literary magazine, his literary influences, and more… 
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Creative Nonfiction

Creative Nonfiction Issue #50

Death is an Outer Body Experience

By Rémy Ngamije

 

Do not confuse death and dying. Dying is internal. Morphine in the arteries. The heart’s countdown. Organs shutting down one at a time. The laboured breathing. A last flicker of the eyes. And then, what? Silence? I do not know. The dead are not talking….
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Interviews

A Sense of Rhythm

Steve Lausier interviews
Jessica Watson

 

Interim nonfiction co-editor Steve Lausier recently had this exchange with Issue #49 featured nonfiction author Jessica Watson. Here’s what Jessica had to say about the value of participating in an MFA program, how music influences her writing, her literary influences, and more… 
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Interviews

An Often Contradictory Truth

Coty Poynter interviews
Joanna Greenberg

 

Nonfiction reader Coty Poynter recently had this exchange with Issue #48 featured nonfiction writer Joanna Greenberg. Here’s what Joanna had to say about the tightrope between fact and fiction, the challenge of writing about memory, how pursuing an MFA opened opportunities, and more… 
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Creative Nonfiction

Creative Nonfiction Issue #48

To Believe or to Know

By Joanna Greenberg

 

It started like this: the second love poem I ever wrote was for you. Before I wrote it, I wrote one to my depression. I was fourteen, and the poem was a long metaphor comparing my unpredictable moods to the weather…
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Interviews

Seeking Community

Julie Patterson interviews
Steven Moore

 

Nonfiction co-editor Julie Patterson recently had this exchange with Issue #47 featured nonfiction writer Steven Moore. Here’s what Steven had to say about writing a memoir, the challenge of marrying form and content, how his work as a journal editor informs his writing, and more… 
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Creative Nonfiction

Creative Nonfiction Issue #47

Song for No One’s Backyard

By Steven Moore

 

Jim McCrumb always told the same stories to every new batch of student employees. Jim had been a manager at the university bookstore for a long time. He spoke gently. He smiled. He had gray hair. He liked surrealism…
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Interviews

Fight Like a Writer

Julie Patterson interviews
Chelsey Clammer

 

Nonfiction co-editor Julie Patterson recently had this exchange with Issue #46 featured nonfiction writer Chelsey Clammer. Here’s what Chelsey had to say about drawing on intimate life experience for writing, her self-description as a “sound nerd,” her approach to editing, and more… 
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