A fifth-grade bully, a blossoming romance, a late-night crash
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Steve Almond has been writing poetry and prose ever since his parents kicked him out of the house. He lives in Somerville, Massachusetts, and his short-story collection, My Life in Heavy Metal, is out this month in paperback from Grove Press.
Vic Coccimiglio is a poet living in Long Beach, California. His poems have appeared in American Poetry Review, North American Review, Paris Review, Poetry, and in the anthology The Invisible Ladder (Henry Holt & Company).
A native New Yorker, Arnie Cooper now lives on the edge of a national forest near Santa Barbara, California, where he writes about spirituality, environmental issues, technology, and the media. His work has appeared in Mother Jones, Context, Language Magazine, and various literary journals.
Richard Grossinger is a cultural anthropologist, writer, and co-founder of North Atlantic Books, a leading publisher of alternative health, martial arts, and spiritual titles.
Jeff Gundy’s book of essays, Scattering Point: The World in a Mennonite Eye, is just out from SUNY Press. He teaches writing and literature at Bluffton College in Ohio and spends a lot of time these days trying to envision other lives for himself.
James Lainsbury has worked as a logger, editor, and many things in between. He is a Mainer by birth but is currently nestled between Interstate 90 and the rail yard in Missoula, Montana, with his girlfriend and a moody springer spaniel. His essay “Control” is part of a larger, unpublished work.
Stephen J. Lyons lives in Monticello, Illinois, and writes a monthly column, “Letters from Midlife,” for austinmama.com. His work has recently appeared in Adbusters, Salon, and Hope, and he has an essay in the forthcoming anthology Father Nature: Fathers as Guides to the Natural World (University of Iowa Press).
Ellen Slezak’s collection of short stories Last Year’s Jesus was recently published by Hyperion. She lives in Los Angeles.
Nelson A. Smith is a freelance advertising writer and essayist living in Manhattan. His work has appeared in Harper’s, the New York Times Magazine, the Baffler, In These Times, and elsewhere. He is currently working on a cultural history of pigeons, from Genesis to Darwin to Skinner, tentatively titled “Lessons of an Organic Widget.”
Velvy Appleton is a photographer, filmmaker, and musician living in the San Francisco Bay Area.
Gordon Baer is author of a book of photographs titled Vietnam: The Battle Comes Home (Morgan and Morgan) and a recipient of the Nikon World Understanding Award. He lives in Cincinnati, Ohio.
James Carroll is a photographer living in New York City.
Lesley Cecchi lives and takes photographs in Montclair, New Jersey.
Ryan Fox is a freelance travel photographer living in Beaverton, Oregon.
Krissy Hall is a recent college graduate who’s just getting started in photography. She lives in Newton, Georgia.
Doris Mitsch is a San Francisco photographer whose work has been exhibited nationally.
Brian Peterson is a photographer and museum curator who lives in Lower Gwynedd, Pennsylvania.
Sara Safransky is a photographer living in Holyoke, Massachusetts. For the last six months, she’s been travelling through Europe “like an athlete in an eating marathon.”
Melissa Shook is a photographer, writer, and teacher living in Chelsea, Massachusetts. She’s completed a book about how her mother’s death from stomach cancer caused her to forget most of her childhood.
Ramin Talaie is a freelance photographer in New York City.
Jennifer Trier is a “rookie photographer” living in San Diego, California. Her photograph in this issue is her first published work.
Photographer Karen Tweedy-Holmes makes portraits of bugs, beasts, buildings, plants, people, and large rock formations. She lives in New York City but vanishes into the desert every chance she gets.
William Carter lives in Los Altos Hills, California. He took this month’s cover photograph on the western end of Molokai, a relatively undeveloped Hawaiian island, in December 2001. It was late in the afternoon, and the hazy sun was coming through the crashing surf, illuminating it. “The surf was very high,” he writes. “A person unlucky enough to be out in it would have been dwarfed by the wave.”
Editorial & Photo
Rachel J. Elliott