‘Sprawl’ lays it all out, refusing to stick to the three thousand-word limit. At nineteen pages, ‘Chemical’ by Eda Gunaydin is our second foray into longform fiction. Eda shares her creative process in an interview in this issue’s Behind the Curtain section, where she describes the story best herself:
‘Chemical’ is about a twenty-year-old Westie named Safiye who tries to study for a summer school exam over the course of a week, without losing her mind. It reflects on how diasporic kids grapple with modern issues—drugs, mental illness, sexuality—while still carrying their families’ heavier burdens and traumas.
Inside the issue, you’ll also find stories about intergalactic wars and falling for your favourite American drag queen, poetry that finds God in the divine eroticism of a strawberry sundae at the drive-thru, and a comic that comes to terms with the fact we’ll probably never get rid of the moths in the pantry, all wrapped up in beautiful cover art by Lee Lai.
From a strong batch of nonfiction, Grace Hart’s experimental piece, ‘Reception’, explores the implicit sexualisation of women and the simmering threat of violence they face; ‘Shit City’ by Jesse Paris-Jourdan dives into Toowoomba’s debate on recycling sewage for drinkable water; Valerie Schlosberg’s essay, ‘Blessings for the In-Between’, connects with Jewish histories to find blessings in dark circumstances; ‘I Dreamt I was A Woman’ combines memoir and poetry to express the experience of an anonymous non-binary sex worker; and Jack Callil’s ‘When Everything Goes to Shit for A Bit’ attempts to understand a brief psychotic episode through fractured film narratives.
Enjoy getting stuck into Voiceworks #109, ‘Sprawl’.