SmokeLong Quarterly

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Letter from the Editor (36)

Story by Tara Laskowski June 15, 2012

Art by Marty D. Ison

In looking over this issue, I’ve realized one of the things I really love about our publication. Here we have an issue that includes award-winning published authors like the amazing Pamela Painter and the talented Mary Hamilton right alongside writers just beginning their careers—such as Joel La Puma, whose story “Lead My Skeptic Sight” is his first ever publication.

Our guest editors read blind, and our staff hardly ever looks at a cover letter or name until much later in the reading process. I always think it’s kind of cool, then, to see the wide variety of styles, themes and topics that we come up with every few months. From the heady “We Haven’t Seen You in Ages” to the whimsical “In Their Proper Place,” this issue is packed full with bubble baths, chocolate purity, sexy women and radioactive sheep. Hell, we even threw in a little skull-fucking for your reading pleasure (and as glib as that may sound, Angela Allan’s story is a beautiful, strange, wild and tender story that you really must read.)

Hope you enjoy Issue 36!


I did want to quickly point out a few staff changes since the last issue. Ashley Inguanta is our new art editor, replacing the wonderful and talented Gay Degani, who is still a staff editor here at SmokeLong but has handed the art duties over to Ashley. Ashley has done a phenomenal job pairing the gorgeous art with the stories and I am eternally grateful for her help.

We also added Josh Denslow to our staff of editors. You may remember Josh’s story “Everyone Continued to Sing” from our last issue. We were so wowed by that piece, and so pleased with Josh as a guest editor for us, that we asked (begged) him to stay on and read for us. We’re glad that he agreed!

And last, I wanted to note that Nancy Stebbins is now my co-senior editor here at SLQ. Nancy helps coordinate all the guest editors, so if you’ve ever had the pleasure of working with her you know how amazing she is.

I want to thank all of our staff for all the hard work and time they put in each issue. We’ve got some of the best and smartest readers on staff and I’m grateful every day for all that they do.

OK, enough gushing. Get on with the stories.

Tara Laskowski
Senior Editor, SmokeLong Quarterly

June 25, 2012

About the Author

Tara Laskowski

Tara Laskowski has been editor at SmokeLong Quarterly since 2010. Her short story collection Bystanders was hailed by Jennifer Egan as “a bold, riveting mash-up of Hitchcockian suspense and campfire-tale chills.” She is also the author of Modern Manners For Your Inner Demons, tales of dark etiquette. Her fiction has been published in the Norton anthology Flash Fiction International, Ellery Queen’s Mystery Magazine, Alfred Hitchcock’s Mystery Magazine, Mid-American Review, and numerous other journals, magazines, and anthologies. Tara lives and works in a suburb of Washington, D.C.

About the Artist

A native of Ohio, Marty D. Ison lives with his wife transplanted in the sands of the Gulf of Mexico. He studied fine arts at Saint Petersburg College. In addition to the visual arts, he writes poetry, short stories, and novels. See more of Ison’s work here.


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