‘Kiln Project’ celebrates magazine release

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On Tuesday night, “The Kiln Project” proudly released its annual issue of Saint Louis University’s only literary magazine. An online publication, the magazine publishes creative work  by SLU students. Last year, the magazine was rebranded as “The Kiln Project” – previously “Kiln” – and launched an impressive, new, interactive website. This is the second publication since the re-launch.

The purpose of the online magazine is to provide a place for students to share their creative work. Including poetry, visual art, fiction and non-fiction, “The Kiln Project” assembles creative work into one publication. Faculty advisor Saher Alam says that the students involved in creating the magazine constitute a circle “where words aren’t placeholders, but have meaning attached to them.” The compilation of ideas, images and experiences of the writers fill The Kiln Project with a depth that reveals its potential for further growth as a showcase of creative talents on our campus.

The Spring 2015 issue’s theme is “oneiric,” meaning “to be in a dreamlike state.” A large part of “The Kiln Project” was its stop-motion film, which fits together the featured works into one visual story. As a collaborative effort by the creators of the magazine, they hope that their film provides a “new type of literary experience.”

The pieces together create a multidimensional dream, a hypnosis by the fascinating syllables and stanzas, which fabricate the comprehensive experience of the project. The process of putting words to paper and then translating them to a visual presentation that mixes the literature together exemplifies the magic of creativity in all of its forms, which creates such an infallible allure.

The release party was a chance for some of the writers to read their work aloud and an opportunity to recognize the winners of the 2015 Montesi Award: Brenda Suhan, for her short story “Still Life,” and Erin Everson, for her poem “Dear Scout.” Featured in “Kiln,” Molly Carroll and Andrew Southern read their short-stories, “Real” and “What to do When the Asteroid Comes”; Emily Higginbotham read her non-fiction piece, “Finding Our Faith Again”; and Brenda Suhan and Anna Girgenti read their poems, “The American Dream” (one of Brenda’s three poems in “Kiln”) and “Water Snakes” (one of Anna’s five poems in “Kiln”).

The exciting news is that a student doesn’t have to be part of the English program at SLU to be featured in “The Kiln Project” or to be part of the panel that creates the online magazine.

This year, about 50 percent of all submitted pieces were selected to be a part of the project, and the creators hope that each year, more students will want to contribute.

Within the SLU community, there are many different communities that collectively create our campus life. According to faculty advisor Saher Alam, “Kiln” exists as a “micro-community that appreciates … a range of good writing.” “Kiln” seems to be on its way to becoming a well-known and highly praised publication of Saint Louis University.