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vol vi, issue 2 < ToC
From the Editor
by
Jeff Georgeson
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full contents interview:
Gemma Amor
From the Editor
by
Jeff Georgeson
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interview:
Gemma Amor
From the Editor
by
Jeff Georgeson
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full contents interview:
Gemma Amor
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interview:
Gemma Amor
From the Editor  by Jeff Georgeson
From the Editor
 by Jeff Georgeson
When I wrote about anxiety and mental trauma in June, I had little idea that the world would double down on just those things in the two months before our August issue. The US, in spite of being a self-described bastion of freedom and democracy, allowed a minority to dictate the setback of women’s rights by five decades, and looks on the verge of doing the same for LGBTQIA+ rights and sticking its Moral Minority nose into decisions such as contraception. Meanwhile, we reap what we’ve sown with stronger variants of Covid and other viruses, and with climate change wreaking havoc across the world. And as if this weren’t enough for one two-month period, we continue to watch Russia destroy Ukraine (tiptoeing around Putin and not really giving the Ukrainians what they need) and provoke China into aggressive demonstrations of its military might around Taiwan (without asking the people of Taiwan if they wanted us to do such a thing). And these are just the traumas and anxieties of the world around us, pressing down on our daily lives and just adding to our burdens, making worse any personal traumas we have.

Somehow, though, we lucked out into planning ahead.

This issue we feature an incredible interview with author and artist Gemma Amor featuring a discussion about trauma—in a sense, continuing elements of the article we had in the last issue, but on a much more personal level. Amor’s latest book, Full Immersion (due out in September), explores in a sense her own mental health crisis over the last five years and how she’s dealt with that. Plus bonus material: We also talk about her art, self-publishing vs traditional publishing (not so much versus, actually), and just how one goes about writing a book.

It seems appropriate that the rest of the issue is filled with works that speak to the idea of changing our lives (I mean, more so than most stories do). Everything from decisions that bridge living and dying (“Switchback” Carolyn R. Russell, “Scorekeeper” by Bob Ritchie, “The Thing in the Loft” by Luke Walker) to working to change the lives of others or the planet (“When the Fireworks Fade” by Ryan Hyatt, “The Quintet is Ready” by Maureen Bowden, “Nobody’s Hero” by J.C. Pillard) or both (“Fire and Particles” by N.K. Leullier). There are very personal changes bought at a price (“The Rock Swimmers” by Harrison Kim, “Unfamiliar” by Harris Coverley) or that just wander into our lives (“Vlad’s Cat” by Christina Sng), and more philosophical musings on change (“My Biggest Existential Disappointment” by J. J. Steinfeld, “I’ve Been Told of Fourth Street” by Marge Simon, “Petitions” by Ed Ahern, “Premonition” by Emma Neale).

An integral part of this fabric of change is the art found in this issue, which although more difficult to define still reads to me as change, from looking from one self to another in Hidden Mirrors by Tabitha Marsh to finding one’s way amongst one’s selves in Tim Hildebrandt’s Fire Door, from the joys of simply being in Shikhar Dixit’s Earth9 to moving toward enlightenment in Awaken by Carl Scharwath. In Nicola Brayan’s Calamity I see not that but, rather, the resolution to change life for the better, and in R. Mac Jones’ Waking to Cry Stop a desperate attempt to save ourselves—but which self?

We also continue toward the end of Mondo Mecho’s run in Penumbric. Just a few more issues left!

I hope that as we wind down summer and head into the autumn things begin to calm down a little. I usually find that autumn rejuvenates me leading into my favorite month of the year—October. I hope that it rejuvenates you as well.

All the best,
Jeff Georgeson
Managing Editor
Penumbric

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