Jessalyn Johnson is a senior at Grand Canyon University, completing the final year of her BA in English Literature. Originally from Melbourne, FL, Jessalyn has come to enjoy living in the desert of Arizona. Since freshman year she has occupied several different positions on the editorial board of GCU’s literary review, StartleBloom, which is approaching its third volume. In her free time, Jessalyn enjoys creative writing, photography, writing music and participating in the plays and musicals put on by GCU’s Ethington Theatre.
Last year, StartleBloom made its debut as GCU’s new student literary review. This year, the book returned for its second volume and was released to the public in early April. The review is made up of a compilation of poetry, short fiction and artwork, all of which is submitted by GCU students. A small board of English literature students lead the review, advised by two professors, Diane Goodman and Heather Brody.
The second volume of StartleBloom required the same amount of time and dedication as the first; each board member took each submission into careful consideration before the group decided which pieces were best suited for the review. Submissions are blind so each piece is chosen anonymously. Board members are encouraged to submit as well and this edition includes poetry, short fiction and photography from a handful of board members, including senior Tim Dombroski’s “The Tanager” and junior Cymelle Edwards’ “The Water Runs Clear in Bakersfield.”
The review is a reflection of the talent and dedication GCU’s creative writers have and give to their craft. The published work includes efforts from diverse colleges, from the College of Humanities and Social Sciences to the College of Science, Engineering and Technology. StartleBloom prides itself on its student-driven foundation, made by students for students. The quality of the book showcases the hard work that students poured into it, along with some help from the GCU marketing department.
Next year, StartleBloom will take on its third volume, led by co-editors Edwards and Shyann Haines, joined by veteran board members. The purpose of the review has been, and will continue to be, to show the passion and commitment to the wonderful art of writing, with intent of spreading the joy of writing literature through GCU and beyond!
Check out the video below for an inside look at this year’s volume of StartleBloom:
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