7 Reads We Recommend

Ems Seven Heart
Art by Emily Ramser

Last fall, we listed 7 reads from around the web that struck a nerve with us. Now that we’ve grown in number here at Change Seven, we thought it’d be fun to start a monthly list of seven of our collective favorite reads from great online journals you should be checking out. Here’s what we recommend:

  1. Commuting” by Gail Seigel in FRiGG:

“Gaze deeply into this masterful work of art by Gail Seigel, and Chicago becomes your city, and Simone becomes that version of you when your city was your closest companion for a time, offering up a vast array of detail as metaphor that shifted daily to the forefront of your observances, seemingly in tune with your consciousness, as if paying acute attention to the minutes of your life.” ~ Antonios Maltezos, Editor

2. “beware of dog” by Ben Newell in Zygote in My Coffee

“In ‘beware of dog,’ Ben Newell uses swift, short lines to grab the reader’s attention. Unlike many who use this technique, he maintains the reader’s interest. I found myself invested in the piece as if it were my own thoughts, as it sneaks into your head. It’s one of those poems that reminds you to start writing again.” ~ Emily Ramser, Editorial Assistant

3. “He Took Off His Skin For Me,” a short film by Ben Aston based on the short story by Maria Hummer in Devil’s Lake

“’He Took His Skin Off for Me’ is a gruesome but elegantly put together literal metaphor about many things but primarily what it means to change ourselves for someone else. We are all guilty of wanting others to change for us but are (more often than not) unwilling to change in return. This is the problem that quickly arises in this short film. The metaphor is relevant however you spin it, and this short flick is executed, edited, and performed so marvelously, it’s hard to believe it was a student film (at the time, as the director has since graduated film school).” ~ Chelsei Crotteau, Social Media Assistant

4. “I Want What You Want” by Dawn Bailey/Illustrations by Meridith Burchiel in SIXPENNY

“Dawn Bailey knows the truth of the concentric circles of life: one center, with sometimes troublesome outliers. Her brief tale of passion and desperation conjoins with the neon perceptibility of Meridith Burchiel’s illustrations to elicit a powerful voice. The movement of the language is swift; an observation of the desire to hold on to stark truths, and how we can create barriers within the most intimate moments. Dawn’s relentless pronoun usage, in this particular story, works for me here– to create the psychic distance that we can use in emotionally fraught situations. SIXPENNY publishes ‘Illustrated Stories for Your Pocket.’ This new mag from the UK is fresh, and its focus is catering to our increasingly mobile society. Much more fascinating and entertaining content here: ‘Just Fine’ by Bill Roorbach/Illustrations by Jeffrey Lewis highlights a teenage boy who is, most certainly, quite the opposite.” ~ Laurel Dowswell, Features Editor

5. “Love to a Monster” by Michael Credico in Cosmonauts Avenue:

“I relish stories that dare me. And this one double-dog dares me, as it asks me to consider two of my fav subjects: love and monsters, and then further dares me to trust its strange story logic and locution. Of course, what else will do in a story about monsters in love? Michael Credico reinvents everything in this little piece of magic. I’m caught in its spell.
Two other stories I love in Cosmonauts Avenue: “South of the Border” by T. Kira Madden and “This is How You Break Up” by Digby Beaumont.” ~ Sheryl Monks, Editor

6. “Herpes of the Heart” by Natanya Pulley in The Butter

“Everything about this story takes me out of my comfort zone, makes me feel bolder than I am, more alive, just for having read it. Natanya Pulley is fearless in getting at the heart of shallow sexual encounters. There is not a false note in this beautiful story, nor does the intensity ever relent. If you’re brave enough to look at truth, Natanya Pulley is brave enough to show it to you.

After you read her story, go read mine, which also recently appeared in The Butter.” ~ Sheryl Monks, Editor

7. “Point B Deferred” by Alexandria LaFaye in The Blue Hour

“When I read ‘Point B Deferred,’ I felt like I was climbing a rock wall. I had to search for the next handhold, and sometimes it took me a few moments to find one, but the satisfaction upon realizing the connection and pulling myself up with said handhold made the confusion worth it. It was as if the clouds had suddenly opened during a rainstorm and the sun bathed me and just me in its light, as the rain continued to fall around me. If you are up for deciphering and digging through layers, this piece is worth a read or two or five.” ~ Emily Ramser, Editorial Assistant



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