About “Filaments of Prayer” by Christine Stewart-Nunez from issue 298.1

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In my writing process, I have learned to trust the way the subconscious yanks images and events from my past and slaps them squarely in the present. Time blurs in the dream space of psyche, and the subconscious suggests meaning before the rational mind.

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The Outsider Impulse: Writing ‘Dovehouse’ in Spain by Catherine Carberry from issue 298.1

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“Granada,” Dan said, “is a city of black sheep.” We were standing on his balcony overlooking the crumbling rooftops of the Albaicin, the old Moorish quarter where we both lived. A year before meeting Dan and other writers, I had come to Granada, Spain, to teach English. Maybe it was the immersion in Spanish, or maybe it was my job—teaching art classes in a preschool, which consisted mainly of singing about the primary colors—but within a month, I was desperate for polysyllabic English words and complex sentences. It was this literary homesickness that drove me to write seriously for the first time. Soon, I was spending my paycheck on Amazon orders and huddling in the fifth floor stairwell of my ancient apartment to use the landlord’s WiFi and read interviews with my favorite authors. I quickly became hungry for a literary community that existed beyond my laptop.

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Pile, Grace by Emily Vizzo

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Drivers in San Diego love to gripe about congested freeways, how LA-style gridlock has crept south through Orange County to slow commutes straggling through the tawny, militarized foothills of Camp Pendleton south to the smoke-clogged morass of the U.S./Mexico border. My car was idling along the stilled 805 exchange on an arid September evening with the windows down, several lanes over from the thatchy chaparral, yellow wildflowers and short, twisted pines rimming the freeway embankments.

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