The sun has not set in days. The sky is on fire. The clouds are swollen, heavy with the truth. Like a fever that will not break, sinθ #24 “EMBER 炎” hangs over us in an amalgamation of works that trouble, alarm and fascinate. Dissenting and mischievous, here are works that fan the flames in calculated chaos, dancing gracefully across an apocalyptic landscape.

Also featured in this issue are the winners of our fourth annual Summer Writing Contest! We are especially grateful to Yanyi and Jamie Marina Lau for serving as our poetry and fiction judges respectively this year.

In this issue:

  • The winning entries of our Summer Writing Contest: “Autumn, as a Color” by Lily Zhou (Poetry) and “Pleasantries” by Daisuke Shen (Short Fiction).
  • Several other shortlisted entries by Sharon Lin, Si-Min Chong, Sophia Chong, Elizabeth Yuen, C. Shen Yuan, and Olive X. Li.
  • Editor-in-Chief Jiaqi Kang profiles artist Yvonne Feng; they discuss the core of Feng’s artistic practice—unpacking and interrogating the violence within systems of incarceration, as well as the ethics of exploring traumatic histories through art.
  • Elyse Hong’s “#justgirlythings” reflects on growing pains, brutal friendship breakups and the special kind of stinging, vicious love between girls.
  • Managing Editor Chi Siegel chats with author Kim Fu about their latest short story collection (Lesser Known Monsters of the Twenty-First Century) writing within the speculative tradition, and balancing expectations as a diasporic writer in publishing.
  • Two atmospheric short stories by Catherine Xie excavate themes of womanhood, desire, want and aloneness.
  • Editor Yue Chen and Web Content Intern Joanne Zou interview Young Adult Novelist Ann Liang: they deep-dive into the worlds of her three forthcoming novels, her processes and her influences.
  • Visual art by Fidelia Jakin, Taylor Yingshi and Russell Tan oscillate between the magical, the surreal and the haunting.
  • More poems by Griffin Jing Martin, Hannah Wang, Chloe Chou and Angie Kang.

Cover by Chi Siegel.