This is my last semester of uni, and I am very, very stressed. I cried seven times this week, in offices and on trains and in libraries. Sometimes the world (Honours) is a bit too much and my soul (ded from Honours) is a bit too sensitive.
But whilst I have had a weepy week, I have also had a fun one. I made a star shape out of shoes with my fellow editors. I sent a risky email with a lot of encouragement. I settled on a novel data set for my thesis with the help of a friend. I watched Barbie: The Nutcracker and the Titanic sink at 2x speed. And, with the help of my nine fellow editors and countless writers and artists, I have brought this beautiful edition into the world.
This edition is all about navigating spaces and worlds that might be hostile, strange or surreal. We have an insightful piece from Deaundre Espejo on the erasure of LGBTQI+ narratives from the Academy. Carrie Wen traces the history of queerness in China. Peter Prentice takes us into the life-or-death stakes of gaming universes. Victor Ye leads us on a haphazard journey through memory and western Sydney. Vivienne Guo offers us balm to the soul with a much-needed piece on mental health and plants.
The edition’s feature, written by Hazel Mackenzie Peterson and Nell O’Grady, is a piece about endometriosis, its invisibility, and how our systems continually fail all those affected by it. The piece is deftly researched and one of immense importance, particularly during Endometriosis Awareness Month.
This edition would not exist without the immense contributions from our artists. Thank you Garnet, Jocelin, Matilda, Shrawani, Mei, Joe and Pranay.
And of course, a big, big thank you to Jess Zlotnick for this beautiful cover art. It is a bright other-world, a mystical cityscape of rose-coloured walls and stairs in the sky. I imagine it to be the world where I finish my thesis (and Game of Thrones simultaneously), survive this semester, and make more star shapes out of shoes with people I am beginning to love.