Letter from the editors
We are especially proud of our summer issue which contains the work of remarkable writers who continue to push back against the impediments of our unusually tough times: the pandemic, the continued viciousness against people of color, the chasms that divide us economically, politically, socially, environmentally. As we were putting this issue together, we took solace in the words published here. We hope you find that solace, too.

Our fiction contributors bring humor, mystery, bravery, and spirituality to their stories. We found their work riveting and unforgettable, and we’re especially glad to feature four new voices in our fiction offerings (plus one writer whose support we have been lucky to have since our beginnings: Elaine Fowler Palencia): Tommy Dean, Damian Dressick, Christy Alexander Hallberg, and T. E. Wilderson.
(Bonus material! Go here to see the video of the song featured in Christy’s story, “Grievous Angel" and Gram Parsons's famous Nudie suit.)

In poetry, we welcome Lisa Kwong and Amy Wright back to our pages along with six new voices: Judy Belk, Chris Cocca, Christina Fisanick, Jessica Jacobs, Dane Ritter, and Ciona Rouse. The work from our poets is extraordinary, heartbreaking, and authentic. We think you’ll be knocked over by these poems that feature subjects such as identity, spouses, social and racial inequities, environmental concerns, and beautiful sonic/verbal acrobatics. 

“This place becomes my spiritual geography,” William Woolfitt writes in his “C is for Cumberland Plateau,” where he works “to see what is good and give words to it, trying to resist evil, to make amends, to do no more harm.” This is a fitting theme for the riveting creative nonfiction we have in this issue: meditations, essays, and mosaics on nature, history, death and dying, even snakes and chiggers and crawdads. Along with Will, our creative nonfiction writers are Jennifer McGaha, Janisse Ray, Laura Jackson Roberts, and Gabriel Rogers.

In Kentucky, we have a new Poet Laureate: Crystal Wilkinson. We talked to Crystal about that and about her new book of poetry, Perfect Black, out this summer from University Press of Kentucky. We also have a conversation with writers Pauletta Hansel and Robert Gipe, a writing exercise from Sean Corbin, and music from Wu Fei and Abigail Washburn. Melissa Helton reviews Storytelling in Queer Appalachia: Imagining and Writing the Unspeakable Other, edited by Hillery Glasby, Sherrie Gradin, and Rachael Ryerson; and Lacy Snapp reviews Lock Her Up, poems by Tina Parker.

In coming issues, we'll have more new voices to offer and some exciting translations with audio. We'll also soon be announcing some news about guest fiction editors and our next submission periods.

Finally, below are new releases from Still: The Journal contributors and friends. Just click the photos to learn more about these books and recordings. We hope you'll support these artists and share the word about their new creations. 

New Releases from 
Still: The Journal editors

Congratulations to these Still contributors whose work was nominated for the annual
Best of the Net awards anthology, 2021 

Michael Amos Cody     Conversion
Jacinda Townsend     Half

makalani bandele     unit_25, a corner unit
Ron Houchin     Starlings Asleep
Jessica Jacobs     Personal Injury Parents
Sean Purio     A Proper Burial
Danni Quintos     All Filipina Women Are Beautiful
Ciona Rouse     Ride or Die
Creative Nonfiction:
Janisse Ray     Serena
William Woolfitt     C is for Cumberland Plateau



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