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Literary Mixtape Vol. 16

Side A:

Side B:

May 26, 2024

When I started Major 7th I got some very weclome unsolicited advice from a fellow editor who shared my enthusiasm for the project—and wanted me to keep that that enthusiasm high.

He told me "do what ever you have to do to keep it fun."

I know I've written about this before, and under the same circumstances. Today, keeping it fun—and sustainable—means making a change to pub schedule.

I'm going down to one mixtape a month, starting in June.

Your masthead is just yours truly, and I want to be sure I'm keeping things balanced for myself. Without boring you with details, I've had a hell of a year and while the magazine has been a respite, it's also been a challenge—I'm seeing why so many mags have guest readers and editorial boards!

Once a month feels like a good change going into the summer. Your next edition will be the band tshirt mixtape curated by Caleb Bethea. I'm excited to see what y'all have in store.

For this mixtape, Arushi Rege sings the "Alien Blues" at the top of their lungs, a lament for feeling alienated and estranged from one's own body.

Ann Kammerer follows a pair of wine-swilling, drunk-driving friends as they soak in neon and flip the world off between bars in "Hot Rod Hearts."

In "Good Times, Bad Times", Cody Shrum shares a sweet, Zeppelin-tinged memory: the first moment his grandparents locked eyes in a smoky bowling alley in 1969.

"Last Kiss" is an elegy for someone out of the frame: a co-conspirator no longer around to share jokes, to share stories, to verbally spar. I like the piece that much for what it leaves unanswered: who is the co-conspirator to our narrator, and why are they no longer around?

"Always on Time" imagines Ashanti in the vocal booth, always aware of the performance but blind to the pop culture echoes she's about to make, the tinges of nostalgia not yet felt.

Tim Frank's "I Feel You" is a bit of band up absurdism with just about everything you could want from a piece—renegade homeschool moms, acid-dropping, breakdancing teacher narcs, and puke in a Louis Vuitton bag.

Thanks for reading as always, and I'll see ya every month.




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