SLUSH PILE MAGAZINE IS officially one year old, and sexier than ever. We’ve lost some weight, you see. And while “skinnier” is not always tantamount to “sexier”, we’re going to throw on some skinny jeans and go with it.

After a year of blood, sweat, and tears, most of the good folks who helped launch Slush Pile were lost to the demands of their real lives. Matthew Hotham was eaten alive by North Carolina; David Thorpe was coaxed away by the allure of more prestigious (or, at least, paid) writing gigs; Caroline Tanski was lost to her college education and the good Canadians at Sip Marketing may have actually died. M.R. Branwen thought of putting Slush Pile on hiatus, weary as she was of manning the ship with her two small hands. But, compelled by the ever-increasing influx of good fiction, and encouraged by her last remaining sidekick, Sara Petras, she decided instead to strip Slush Pile down to its essentials: Short Fiction and Art.

So here we are, keeping the dream alive. And to help us ring in the new era of Slush Pile are new and old friends alike. Lisa Pierce, William Gill and Jeremy Lakaszcyck (whose name I must triple check each time I spell it) have contributed four poignant stories about relationships, loss and teenage sexuality. Meanwhile, Christopher Harris (“The Adventures of Froggy March” Issue One) is back with more shenanigans -- but in the big city -- and Hayes Moore (“Hope of Reboot” Issue Two) keeps it real…weird. And amazing, as always. Now that there are fewer columns [dabs a small tear off of her cheek] at least you have more time to spend with the fiction that keeps me up at night.

And now, the question you are dying to ask: is that a painting of two people having sex,and a boulder? Yup. Everyone, meet Tirtzah Bassel, our Featured Artist this issue. I have to admit that I especially love Tirtzah, not only because her paintings are so fascinating, but because she is a former roommate of mine. And while I try not to feature too many of my friends in Slush Pile, it’s difficult when your friends are so brilliant.



— M.R. Branwen


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