Welcome to the 17th issue of Imitation Fruit. We're so happy with how this issue came out both content and aesthetic wise. Our contributors' dynamic content includes some innocently presented macabre humor, suppressed thoughts on transportation etiquette, and details on how cookies can save a kingdom. If you find something herein you want to share with others, we made that easier to do by including printer-friendly PDF versions of each piece. Please do use the Facebook "like" buttons to share bites of Imitation Fruit on your social media.

Longtime Imitation Fruit contributor, Diana Blackwell won the "Let's Team Up Contest" with her cover art illustration "Animal People." The uniquely styled piece conjures up a film noir pack of friends you wouldn't want to cross in a dark alley. It unites a variety of animals looking like they've just pulled off a heist and know they're going to get away scot-free!

Steven Mendel's short story, "Runaway" is another piece that embodies the intent of our contest as it follows two schoolchildren who decide to play hooky. The friends work together to make their escape and day away from school a success. They both learn something new about the other and about themselves by the end of the eventful exhilarating day.

As always, this issue of Imitation Fruit is filled with smart, unique and rambunctious writing and artwork. Thank you to all of our contributors and readers for your continued support and enjoyment of this literary journal.

Make a Change Contest

In this year's contest, we want to explore what can happen when your characters make the leap toward change. Failure is a big reason change might be avoided, but what if your character doesn't let possible failure stop her and she tries something new anyway? Share your vision of the lessons learned from change, the good or the bad, in the next issue of Imitation Fruit.

The contest is open to both written content and artwork. Submissions are due May 4th, 2020. For more info on how to submit, read our submissions page.

The winner of the contest will receive a $50 gift card to an online retailer of their choice.

More about our cover artist and contest winner:

Diana Blackwell is a self-taught artist in Berkeley, California. She works in charcoal, acrylics, collage, printmaking, and watercolor. She belongs to the East Bay Figure Painters. She has shown work all over the Bay Area and has illustrated books and stories. Her online gallery is www.zhibit.org/diana_blackwell.

Eva Barrows, Editor