Who We Are

First, we are writers. Which means that the path that led us to  is anything but straight and narrow. Yes we write. Of course, we read. But we also teach. We edit. We travel and look for material. We are at turns award-winning short story writer, novelist, poet, essayist, magazine editor, book developmental editor, book reviewer, teacher, writing coach, translator, traveler, New Yorker, transplant.

We come from opposite directions, North and South, a crosshatch of geographic lines that have intersected in New York City: Sylvie hails from Quebec, and Christopher from Alabama. We first met as collaborators for H5, an arts collective conceived in the East Village by Dutch designer Stefan Hengst, and we’ve been collaborating ever since.

We come from opposite directions, North and South, a crosshatch of geographic lines that have intersected in New York City…

We are deeply committed to the mission of ’s online journal and enthusiastic about the contributions possible to the literary community. We look forward to an editorial calendar of open and themed seasonal issues. The journal is the first drawer in the cabinet of from which we draw our years as literary journal editors and ourselves students and writers, engaged with the literary community around us.

Sylvie Bertrand, Founding Editor

Version 3Sylvie Bertrand is a writer and creative writing teacher living in Brooklyn. A native French speaker, she was born and grew up in Montreal. She writes poetry, short stories and is working on her first novel. Her stories have appeared or are forthcoming in Epiphany Magazine, Del Sol Review, Cleaver Magazine, Gravel Magazine, and Penultimate Peanut Magazine. She was nominated for the 2017 PEN / Robert J. Dau Short Story Prize for Emerging Writers as well as for two Pushcart Prizes. Her flash fiction received a Honorable Mention and was listed as a finalist in two Glimmer Train contests. Her short story One of Them won a 2018 Pushcart Special Mention.

She has degrees in Communications and Literature, Political Sciences, and a MA in Cultural Anthropology from Princeton University.

She teaches memoir and creative writing at The Writers Studio in NYC.

Christopher X. Shade, Founding Editor


Christopher was raised in small-town Alabama by a single mother with four kids. He now lives and writes in New York City; an award-winning writer, and editor, book reviewer, and creative writing teacher.

In Christopher’s novel, The Good Mother of Marseille, it is Marseille’s summer of 2013, and an ensemble of Americans wander and sightsee this dangerous yet seductive city in the year of its designation as the European Capital of Culture. The Good Mother of Marseille is forthcoming in early 2019 from Paloma Press.

He teaches prose and poetry writing at The Writers Studio on weeknights in New York City’s West Village.

Over twenty of his stories have appeared in publications, and he has won story awards including the 2016 Writers at Work fellowship and Pushcart nominations.

A member of the NBCC, his book reviews have appeared widely. His reviews have appeared in Prairie SchoonerThe Brooklyn RailAmerican Book ReviewSouthern Literary ReviewNew Orleans Review, Saint Ann’s Review, and elsewhere. His reviews have focused to date almost entirely on titles from small and independent presses, as well as select international fiction. For example, he has reviewed books by French-Iranian author Fariba Hachtroudi, Chilean author Alejandro Zambra, and Oonya Kempadoo. He has conducted author interviews including Peter Ho Davies for The Brooklyn Rail.

For five years he was an editor of an independent print literary journal. He is a graduate of The New School University’s B.A. creative writing program.