Welcome to Issue 17 of Jet Fuel Review! The editors are delighted to share with the world the phenomenal arrangement of writing and artwork that makes this issue sing. After months of reading, and much deliberation, our editors have carefully selected pieces that reflect our mission to curate a publication that showcases the beauty and advocacy of the written word and artwork.
Housed at Lewis University in Romeoville, Illinois, Jet Fuel Review is a student-run, faculty advised, nationally recognized journal that publishes writers and artists from around the globe. Founded in 2011, Jet Fuel Review continues to prosper with the contributions of writers and artists who redefine and defy traditions, leaving their creative, unique impressions on the world of the arts. For example, our featured cover piece for this issue, “Cowboys and Indians,” by artist Delano Dunn is one of his five pieces in this issue that utilize a mixture of art mediums to simultaneously make social commentary and tease out the complexities of identity.
In the poetry section, we are honored to feature Fulbright recipient and Kundiman fellow, Tarfia Faizullah’s piece dedicated to the Jet Fuel Review staff. Our fiction section contains a stunning array of engrossing, distinctive narratives from Wendy Wimmer’s “Texts From Beyond” that places us in a technologically advanced setting where we can communicate with the deceased via text message and emoji, to Tyler Womack’s “The Shovel” which explores the irrationality of the brain during moments of trauma and panic. In addition to the collage pieces by our cover artist Delano Dunn, our art section also features work by New York Foundation for the Arts Fellow Gabe Brown and Artists’ Resource Trust (A.R.T.) Grant recipient Laura Christensen.
Last, but certainly not least, we are excited to present to you our Collaborative Works Special Section. Jet Fuel Review remains steadfast in our mission to highlight innovative work, and there is no better representation of the dynamic community of the literary world than exhibited collaborative works. From Laura Jones’ essay “The Couple is Present” where she is in conversation with her ex-wife and utilizes her ex’s photos as symbols of their relationships’ condition, to Tyler Mills’ and Kendra DeColo’s poems that interrogate gender roles, and envision John Waters’ experience watching Magic Mike, the pieces in this section emphasize that writing cannot, and should not be done in a vacuum. These selections embody the magic that arises out of collaboration and the bringing together of separate voices and identities to craft a singular, resonant body of work.
There are many more powerful voices that comprise Issue 17. All of the pieces that exist within these pages emphasize the multiple identities and creative styles of both the written word and visual art that are transforming today’s literary world. We invite you to enjoy our 17th issue and we hope that you appreciate the enthralling assortment of work that we have collected here.
Zakiya Cowan & the Jet Fuel Review editors