Call for Submissions!

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Hooray! West 10th is now accepting submissions of poetry, prose, and art for its 2018-2019 edition, coming out this spring!

Check out our submission guidelines here.

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Sweetland, by Brittany

In seconds it was colossal. She could do nothing but stare in horror and fatal curiosity. Like a possessed body it whipped and cracked and stretched farther over her garden, clumps of leaves forming a stupendous shadow that enveloped sunlight entirely. Its branches flailed and threw soil that dripped with a dark red substance, uprooted vines heaving as they clung to its branches like threatened by a great fear of heights. The sycamore tree was relentless, tearing its limbs from the dirt and unearthing fat centipedes and the blackest of worms and snapping insects that soared through the air and slapped the fence with such force that it compelled its wooden beams to their sides, the carcasses of beetles and spiders splayed like abstract. The bark of the plant peeled back in a sickly manner and high above and between the foliage exposed a grey, skin-like membrane that throbbed within the trunk, a heaving creature expanding outward until it stopped and the birds hummed and screeched as their nests flitted down towards the ungodly mess of dirt, blood, and flowers and it was silent for a moment.

A great whistle rustled from above and shattered the air as the thing shot its roots down like stems of some overgrown vermin, as if to snatch the young girl’s body and shoot her off far into the sky. Instead its fat veins plowed into the garden before her, groaning and churning under the soil until it had conceived a gargantuan curvature of entwined roots. There stood before her a brooding entryway, for which between muddy walls laid a bizarre road. Impossibly far beyond the dark, a neon sign twinkled: SWEETLAND.

Search History #6: Google Translate: Goodbye

“…everything proceeds from losing our place.” – Leslie Jamison, The Empathy Exams

What I have next is unsearchable.

What I mean is that I cannot google what I need, now.

The internet, I think, is primarily a place to ask questions and hope to have them answered. At least search engines are. It strikes me as sort of strange that the things worth searching for the most are the things that you can’t really find on Google. You can’t know where to go once you’ve graduated and your world shifts again. You can’t know love by Googling it. The limits of asking only go so far.

Last year my boyfriend, a philosophy major, spent a lot of time wondering, talking, and thinking about the question “What if we’re in a simulation?” It’s a question worth wondering about, I think, but he came down to this:

Consciousness can’t be simulated because it isn’t only intelligence. Yeah, okay, you might be able to simulate a brain and thinking, and then maybe you could simulate a nervous system and a motor system. But what we know is not just a function of having a brain, but also of having a body. You’d have to program a body with a nervous system and all the senses that are not only as fine-honed as ours, but are as exactly as limited as ours. You can be as intelligent as you want, but how do you explain why something should feel sad about something, or that gut feeling in your stomach, and what that means? It may well be that it’s all the result of neurons in the brain firing, but it just doesn’t feel possible that you could put that into computer code.

Before I started at NYU, I could’ve never asked Google “What will college be like for me?”,
or “How much will I change in the next four years,”
or “How many times will I cry in public” (though if I did, it would’ve said, “A lot”)
or “What is it like to be a copy editor, to get your writing published, to read your work in front of other people, to write a column, all for the first time.”

Going forward, maybe I will Google “How to fake my own death to get out of student debt,”
or “Doctors in NYC that take my strangely Ohio-specific insurance,” now that I won’t have NYU’s health center,
or “What to use as a public bathroom when I go on long walks through the city and can no longer get into NYU buildings,”
or “Remote Italian towns that will pay you to live there,” when I’m done with grad school and done with New York.

Either way, I will search, and I will make meaning out of what I search for, and I will write about it.

Search History #5: ThoughtWebMd Symptom List

I’m the most melodramatic person

in the entire world.

 

I talk a lot

about how much I make my own

fingers bleed so regularly

but really it’s all I ever think

about because have you done it?

it hurts. I can’t even wear white

anymore. I think it might be

genetic because my mom

does it too and she doesn’t stop either

no matter how many times I tell her she

should.

 

I used to be such a terrible

black and white thinker

but now I’m absolutely

not at all.

 

I’m definitely

fine, I think

I might be making this up.

10 days left to apply to our e-board

Are you curious about magazine editing? Passionate about semicolons? Do you enjoy workshop? Join the 2018-2019 e-board of West 10th! Positions are available in our poetry, art, prose, web, and copy boards. No prior editing experience necessary, but we do encourage some workshop knowledge. Apply by Friday, May 18, 2018, 5pm to be considered.

Email west10th.submissions@gmail.com with your application.

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Q&A with West 10th Editors

Q&A w: West 10th Editors

Are you curious about what it’s like to be an editor at West 10th? Come to our Q&A session on Friday, April 27 and hear our current editorial board answer questions about their experience at the publication. The even will take place in Kimmel 906 from 6:00 – 8:00 PM, food and drinks included. We hope to see you there!

RSVP here.

Search History #4: 27 Club

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

 

 

The 27 Club is a term that refers to the belief that an unusually high number of popular musicians and others in the public eye (?) have died at age 27,[1] often as a result of drug and alcohol abuse, or violent means such as homicide or suicide (an explanation of ‘violent means’ felt necessary).[2]

 

Literal studies have failed to find any unusual pattern of musician-deaths at this age. Hilarious to note is a study done that concluded it is not to do with the age, but rather that “young adult musicians have a higher death rate than the rest of the young adult population, concluding fame may increase the risk of death.” I repeat: Fame may increase the risk of death. That’s simultaneously somehow the most and least chic thing you’ve ever heard, right? Pretending like it’s got something to do with a magical number of 27 is more mystical, but also, imagine a death certificate that says, “Cause of Death: Fame.” [3][4][5]

 

This shit gets a lot of press. Quite an anomaly—fame gets famous. Exclusivity gets a bit more exclusive when death enters the room. Also important to note is that you might feel a bit of panic when you’re the age of 27 because you’ll realize that if you die this year, you’ll not be a part of the club, probably. I don’t know, because I’m not 27, but it’s something I think about. Dedicated to the club, there have been exhibitions and novels and films and stage plays and this Wikipedia page you’re reading at the moment.[6][7][8][9][10]

 

I will give you a list (you would not be on this page if you did not know who it consists of, I think) but it’s a curated list of a curated group. It’s the ones you’ve heard of. God, imagine being in the Wikipedia list of “27 Club Members” and not having a Wikipedia page? Sometimes I like to imagine the 27 club as a sort of offset afterlife. Like heaven but way different. Imagine that dinner party! So much angst! Also, I want to know why you ended up here, on this page. You probably do too. One time I did a project about celebrities and death in which we imagined a life in which your death literally granted you access to something. Which is this. God, fame, right?! Can’t let ‘em live, can’t let ‘em die.

 

Brian Jones, Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, Jim Morrison, Kurt Cobain, Amy Winehouse, Jean-Michel Basquiat.

 

You’re probably at this point thinking “God all these people are so coolor maybe you’re rolling your eyes and saying, “God all these people are so similar.” Either way, I wonder why you think so.

Search History #3

At the time of this search, if you put in every single letter in the alphabet into Google to see the top search result for each letter, all but two are the names of businesses or corporations. The outliers: translate and weather. Amazon, Bank of America, Craigslist, Dominos, Ebay. Ad (infinitum).

 

The Wayback Machine is a digital archive of the World Wide Web and other information on the Internet created by the Internet Archive, a non-profit organization, based in San Francisco, California, United States. It enables you to capture, manage and search collections of digital content without any technical expertise. The service enables users to see archived versions of web pages across time, which the archive calls a

“three-dimensional index.”

 

Google search 2/29/17: This Must Be The Place

Google search 3/1/17: Define Unsolicited

Google search 3/3/17: Healthy heart rate

Google search 3/5/17: True Romance

Google search 3/27/17: Incessantly

Google search 3/28/17: Is chewing 13 pieces of gum bad for me