Issue 19 of Imitation Fruit Literary Journal is ready to be devoured all in one sitting or nibbled on over the course of a few days or even months. There's no rush. Enjoy the fun and upbeat poems, artwork, and stories found inside at your leisure, and please share the gooey goodness with friends.

The short story "Going Beyond Gaskell Ball" by author Cary Tucker won our Plug-In & Connect contest. As the narrator follows his desire to learn how to dance, he finds himself amongst a creative bunch of people who become dear friends. The dancers face a shocking blow with the loss of a cherished ball, how will the narrator and the dance community cope?

Jessica Hatfield's forest camping scene graces this issue's cover. Jessica is an artist and wildlife researcher based in the San Francisco Bay Area. Jessica loves to thrill trick-or-treaters on Halloween with her 8-foot-four stilted forest creature, winning Live With Kelly and Ryan's grand prize for costume design. With a background in veterinary disease ecology and multimedia design, she strives to contribute to wildlife conservation through both the sciences and the arts.

Touching and inspiring examples of community connection await in this issue of Imitation Fruit Literary Journal. As always, a delectable thank you to all of our contributors and readers for your continued thirst for this succulent mix.

Imitation Fruit's Juicy Adventure

Issue 20's contest is all about characters running up against out-of-the-norm challenges. How will your characters fare when things get out of whack? Will they make lemonade or go splat? Submit short stories, poems, and artwork exploring adventures from the everyday to the extraordinary.

Submissions are due April 1, 2025. For more info on how to submit, read our submissions page.

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

Eva Barrows, Editor