2015 Pushcart Nominations

Photograph by Julio César Cerletti García (Castañas en el fuego (PS)) [CC BY-SA 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

Photograph by Julio César Cerletti García

Fiction Nominees

Christian Winn, “The Landline”

“The Landline” is a short story about a mother and son told through a series of quick moments from the narrator’s life. The reader is thrust into the narrative of a long-lost son, but given the space to consider each moment through a series of breaks that weaves moments of conversation and consideration together to land in a moment of unreality, leaving the reader in a place of ambiguity about both the narrator and her son. The short story is a tale about the stories we tell ourselves in order to get by and moves the reader to consider whether fiction is enough even if it’s all we have in order to survive.
—Amanda Canupp-Mendoza, editor-in-chief

Jenny Xie, “The Spa”

Jenny Xie’s “The Spa” shows us the full texture of a life. It is a story that takes place in the strange space where past, present, and future connect—both in the world and in the mind. Fed to us through delicate, direct prose, this was one of our favorites.
—Lina Patton, fiction editor

Nonfiction Nominees

Colleen Abel, “Fat Studies”

In “Fat Studies,” Coleen Abel’s fragmented form juxtaposes research with the personal, ultimately unifying the two in her thoughtful exploration of the construct of beauty and how those who are stigmatized cope with societal shaming.
—Robbie Maakestad, assistant editor

Gail Griffin, “Gloria”

Gail Griffin’s narrator in “Gloria” looks hard at her memories of subtle, and not-so-subtle, racism in the white suburban neighborhood of her childhood. Her language is careful and measured, always searching for the flaws in the narratives she’s been taught, always searching for a sharper understanding of the social and personal implications behind her memories, and most of all, always searching for some way to connect with Gloria, “frozen in time, standing with a doll in her arms on the other side of the world.”
—Eric Botts, nonfiction editor

Poetry Nominees

Katie Willingham, “Honey Locust”

“Honey Locust” collects a series of repeating images to consider how stories are told. The piece is also made complicated and more interesting by the weaving in of the story of the narrator’s relationship. The images are fast and clear, pushed forward via numbered sections to culminate in a braided narrative that also does the job of passing to the reader a collection of stories to take with them.
—Amanda Canupp-Mendoza, editor-in-chief

Bill Moran, “Paw”

An interesting endeavor into sound and image making, Moran’s “Paw” pulls our reading attention to the gritty landscape of the Bayou.
—Q, poetry editor

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