Looking Back and Looking Forward


About five and a half years ago, I was beginning my senior year at Lewis University. In my senior year, I knew that I’d have to do some type of internship for my major, which was English (creative writing). The previous semester, my professor — Dr. Simone Muench — mentioned in class that she’d like Lewis to have a literary journal that was run entirely by students. We already had a journal that was run by the college and maintained by professors, but I agreed with Simone that we should have a student publication as well. After discussing this and filling out some paperwork, creating that student-run journal became my senior year internship.

I can’t stress enough how little I knew about where to begin. I remember spending afternoons just searching through other literary journals for design ideas, formatting techniques, submission information, and masthead hierarchies. After much research, I thought I had some ideas of my own, and one of those ideas was to begin a blog that would accompany the literary journal itself. Thus, the Jet Fuel Review blog was born. You can still go back and read the first post that went up here, a welcome post describing the blog and the journal. If you check out that post, you’ll discover a fun fact about our origins — at one point, we were tentatively called the Honeycomb Review. As you know now, that name didn’t stick.

Since those early days of the blog, we have grown immensely. Not only have we published ten issues of the Jet Fuel Review, all moderated and managed entirely by students, we’ve also continued to add content to this blog. I was worried at first that no one would want to keep up with the blog, or that it would simply fall away once the Review picked up steam. Luckily, that has not been the case. When the blog began, I was the only one adding content from day to day. Slowly, more editors from the Review began to take an interest, and now we have a truly impressive roster of writers here at the blog.

The whole reason for this retrospective is that something pretty prominent about the blog will soon be changing. We’ve had this blog layout since the beginning, but we’ve recently decided that it’s time for a change. Michael Lane, our other blog editor, suggested the change to me last week and, while I was reticent at first, I came to realize that this blog deserves a new coat of paint. After five and a half years of posts, it’s time that we begin displaying our content on a new, sleeker design.

I hope that you all like the blog’s new layout, and I hope that you’ll stick with us as we continue to post here for (hopefully) another five years.

— Jet Fuel Blog Editor, Mary Egan

Editor’s Notes #175

Image source: http://editorialiste.blogspot.com

Good evening, blog readers! I hope that your week has been fantastic. Before we get to all the amazing posts that have gone up in the past couple of weeks, I want to remind you that the Jet Fuel Review‘s reading period is now open. Until March 15th, you can submit your fiction, non-fiction, poetry, and artwork to be considered for our next issue. We also have a special bouts-rimés section in this issue, which you can read all about on our website. For more information about submitting to the Jet Fuel Review, click here.

There have been two rather exciting blog-related posts in recent weeks. First, Michael Lane introduced our new assistant blog editors. You can read all about Gina Capperino, Armon Thurmand, and China McDonald in the post here. We welcome these three new contributors and look forward to what they have to offer! Additionally, at the end of this past week, we posted another installment in our “Meet the Editors” series. In this week’s post, you can learn more about Sam Gennett, the assistant managing editor and assistant nonfiction editor at the Jet Fuel Review. 

If you’re looking for some writing advice, we have two new posts up. First, you can learn about the secrets behind dynamic description in your story. The second post covers the topic of finding a flow in your writing and letting it carry you to the story’s conclusion.

We’ve also featured a few poems here on the blog recently. These include Serving the people of West London by Penelope Shuttle and Edward Hopper’s Automat by Fleda Brown. If you’re looking for some new music to discover, look no further than our most recent Jet Fuel Jukebox posts! You can find tons of song recommendations in the posts for January 26 and February 2.

There have been some great reviews on the blog lately. Sabrina Parr has returned to her book review column, and this newest installment features Born at Midnight by C.C. Hunter. Michael Lane posted a review of the horror film, The Boy, which you’ll learn that he didn’t like very much. Also, in our first student feature of the new year, Lewis student Caitlyn Quinlan wrote a review of “Grease: Live!”

Finally, in music-related posts, Jake Johnson wrote a review of the latest album from Panic! At The Disco, “Death of a Bachelor.” And our blogger Dan Fiorio wrote two music reviews in recent weeks, one for Chairlift’s new album “Moth,” and one for Ty Segall’s new album, “Emotional Mugger.”

I hope you’ve enjoyed these posts from the blog. Stay tuned for more interesting content in the weeks to come, and perhaps an exciting announcement.

— Jet Fuel Blog Editor, Mary Egan


Meet the Editors: Sam Gennett

Sam Gennett
Sam Gennett

Hello readers, and happy Friday! We here at the Jet Fuel Review are happy to bring back one of our favorite features, the “Meet the Editors” series! For the next six weeks, we will have new installments in the series, all looking at one of our brand new editors. Today, we have our new assistant managing editor, Sam Gennett.

Sam is currently a sophomore at Lewis University with a major in creative and professional writing. The first book she ever read was Odd Socks, and since that fateful day in the first grade, she has been hooked for life on the world of literature. As much as she loves to read and write, she doesn’t believe she’ll love anything more than her chocolate Labrador (who is cleverly named Mocha). When she’s not working for the Jet Fuel Review, she is a hockey fan who does yoga and watches reruns of Buffy the Vampire Slayer.

Below is our Q&A with Sam:

Who are you and what is your role in the Jet Fuel Review?

My name is Sam, and I am a sophomore professional and creative writing major at Lewis University. I am the assistant managing editor and assistant nonfiction editor for the Jet Fuel Review.

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Vampires, Werewolves, and Fairies, Oh My!: A Review of “Born at Midnight”


Hello readers, and welcome back to Sabrina’s Book Corner! This week we will be talking about Born at Midnight by C.C. Hunter.

Kylie Galen is shipped off to a camp for troubled teenagers for the summer. Soon after she arrives, it becomes clear that Kylie has a very different definition of “troubled” from the campers at Shadow Falls. Because “troubled,” for them, means supernatural.

Vampires, werewolves, shapeshifters, and fairies who find it difficult to hide their powers in the human world make up the cast at Shadow Falls. While Kylie has never felt normal, she definitely doesn’t belong at a camp for troubled supernaturals, but everyone insists that she is one of them, even if they can’t figure out what kind of supernatural being she is.

Of course, then enters more trouble in the form of Derek, a half-fae who makes Kylie’s life feel normal again, and Lucas, who is really familiar, but doesn’t seem interested in sharing how he and Kylie may know each other. With her life falling apart and Shadow Falls coming under attack, Kylie finds that she might just be right where she belongs.

C.C. Hunter weaves together a fast-paced supernatural story with a couple of interesting twists, too. Born at Midnight is a fun and fast read for any fan of the supernatural.

That’s all for this week, and as always, happy reading!
— Sabrina Parr, Poetry Editor

“Grease: Live!” is the One That I Want…To Watch Again and Again


When I was about six years old — during the summer when my family and I moved into our new house — my mother had had enough of my vigorously expressed boredom. She was simply trying to carefully and neatly put her books into the new bookcase. She knew I wouldn’t want to go outside and perform any athletic activity — I just wasn’t that type of kid. So instead, she found her favorite movie and played it for me. From that moment on, Grease had a special place in my heart. I didn’t understand any of the jokes, as I could barely even read yet alone understand comedy at that point in my life. But it still stole my attention as I sat unhealthily close to the screen.

The music was “electrifying.” John Travolta was, let’s face it, even my 6-year-old self’s dream man. And Olivia Newton-John was iconic. I still remember putting on a leather jacket that didn’t fit me, going into my laundry room, pretending to smoke a cigarette (in the form of a pen), and reciting that infamous line, “Tell me about it, stud.” (By the way, my 6-year-old self says you nailed it, Julianne!)

As a devout and true fan of the original 1978 film (and a cheerleader in my high school’s production of the show — I know, dream come true!), I was beyond excited, albeit slightly nervous about turning on my recording of Grease: Live! last night. However, the nerves quickly fizzled out and the excitement rose as the production went on.

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Basement Dwelling: “Emotional Mugger” by Ty Segall


On the cover of Ty Segall’s 11th record, underneath the image of a grainy black-and-white photo of a disturbing looking doll, is a caption that says, “No man is good three times.” Maybe this is true, but in the case of Mr. Segall, with his new record Emotional Mugger, he proves that you can be great three times. As a matter of fact, he’s been amazing all eleven times that he’s put out a record.

Segall has been making waves in the garage rock/psychedelic scene for about eight years now. It all started with Lemons (2008) and the fantastic lo-fi 2009 masterpiece that put him on many musical maps, Melted. Through the course of these eight years and eleven LPs, Segall has managed to change up his style and yet consistently remain himself with each new addition to his catalog. From the fuzzy, acoustic-led ballads on the album Goodbye Bread, to the pure garage rock freak-out that is Slaughterhouse, no two records of his sound the same and that is certainly still the case for Emotional Mugger.

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Pick-a-Poem: Fleda Brown


Hello, blog readers, and Happy Wednesday! I hope you’re all having a splendid week so far. If you need an excuse to slow down and read some poetry, take this week’s Pick-a-Poem post as your moment to do that. Each week, we feature a new poem here for you to check out. These poems all come from Poetry Daily, a site that features a new poem every day. This week we’re featuring Edward Hopper’s Automat by Fleda Brown.

According to the bio page on her website, Fleda Brown has written several collections of poetry, the most recent of which, No Need of Sympathy, was published in 2013 by BOA Editions, LTD. In 2010, her collection of memoir-essays, Driving With Dvorak, was published by the University of Nebraska Press. She served as poet laureate from 2001-2007 and has read and lectured in many schools and other locales. She now writes a monthly column on poetry for the Record-Eagle newspaper in Traverse City, Michigan and has a regular commentary on poetry on Interlochen Public radio.

Edward Hopper’s Automat by Fleda Brown

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