Creative Nonfiction Winter 2021

Creative Nonfiction is the voice of the genre. Every issue includes long-form essays blending style with substance; writing that pushes the genre’s boundaries; commentary and notes on craft; conversations with writers; and more. Simply put, Creative Nonfiction demonstrates the depth and versatility of the genre it helped define.

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United States
Creative Nonfiction
USD 7.50
USD 25
4 Números

en este número

4 min.
what’s the story?

ORIGINALLY, we were planning to devote this issue—which was scheduled for last summer—to the theme of “power.” And as you’ll see, each essay we’ve collected here engages that theme in one way or another. But as this very long, very eventful year wore on, it seemed to us that the word power had come to evoke something different than what’s in these pages—something too big and abstract, maybe, and too quickly evolving for a smallish literary magazine to address at this moment in time. As we reconsidered these essays, we noticed how often the writers were drawn to moments of enlightenment and shifting awareness—those instants in which power dynamics were observed clearly for the first time. Some of these shifts are incredibly significant, causing cascading realizations that change the path of…

1 min.
about the illustrations

ATIYA JONES is a multidisciplinary artist who employs abstraction and a range of media—including ink drawings, photography, collage, graphic design, and fiber—to investigate subjects such as selfexploration, womanhood, human migration, and gentrification. Having witnessed major socioeconomic and demographic shifts in her native Brooklyn, as well as in Los Angeles and Pittsburgh, where she now lives, she questions how populations reconnect, rebuild, and are reflected within their communities. “One must see that communities of color have most often been moved by force for capital gain,” she says. Her work is “a visual depiction of healing, finding one’s tribe and building a life as a unit,” she adds, with an emphasis on exploring human connection. “It is about the magic permeating beneath the surface of self, and the search to find it.”…

6 min.
the turning point of all things

RANDON BILLINGS NOBLE is an essayist. Her collection Be with Me Always was published by the University of Nebraska Press in March 2019, and her anthology of lyric essays, A Harp in the Stars, is forthcoming from Nebraska in 2021. Other work has appeared in the Modern Love column of the New York Times, the Rumpus, Brevity, Fourth Genre, and elsewhere. Currently, she is teaching in the West Virginia Wesleyan low-residency MFA program. She is also the founding editor of the online literary magazine After the Art. IN 1939, at the urging of her sister and as a break from writing a biography of art critic Roger Fry, Virginia Woolf started drafting her memoir, which she later titled “A Sketch of the Past.” It begins with a simple moment: It is of…

2 min.
for further reading

Here are some moments of clarity that … Are strong but unspoken: From “CHOP SUEY” by IRA SUKRUNGRUANG My mother grabbed my hand and took one step toward the man. In that instant, I saw in her face the same resolve she had when she spanked, the same resolve when she scolded. In that instant, I thought my mother was going to hit the man. And for a moment, I thought the man saw the same thing in her eyes, and his smile disappeared from his face. Quickly, she smiled—too bright, too large—and said, “You’re welcome.” From “FIRST” by RYAN VAN METER To be back here in the dark, private tail of the car suddenly feels wrong, so Ben and I each scoot off to our separate sides…. No one speaks for the rest of…

5 min.
el valle, 1991

AURELIA KESSLER lives in Alaska, where she works at her local public library. Her work has appeared in a variety of publications, including Tidal Echoes, Wildheart Magazine, Cirque, Crab Fat Magazine, and Glass: A Journal of Poetry. IN THE MOUNTAINS north of Santa Fe, there is an adobe house. It is clay, sand, and straw mixed with the sweat of my greatgrandparents, Jacobo and Eloisa. They dug the clay soil and mixed it in a wheelbarrow, taking turns with a shovel, stirring the clay and straw with water from the galvanized metal tub on the ground beside their feet. The water had come from the acequia that trickled through their land. The water in the acequia had come from the Rio de las Trampas, the River of Traps. Their hands were…

12 min.
the sea

MACKENZIE BRANSON is an editor at JuxtaProse and has a degree in English and creative writing. She lives in San Antonio, Texas, with her husband and four children. MY UNCLE WAS a boxer, and the brutality of the sport made me nervous around him. That, and he always greeted me the same way, by squeezing that part of my leg where thigh meets knee. And I mean squeezed—well past the point of a tickle, his laugh too loud. It hurt; how could he not know it hurt? Maybe he did. In any case, he taught me something: to smile instead of squirm, to pretend to like it, and he’d let me go sooner. SOMETIME DURING my eighth-grade year, I was called out of class and told to go to the front office.…