By Megan Michalski

This is my 2nd year at UWMC and I finally found the time to take the Mush class that was offered. I assumed that the class was going to be difficult but realized instantaneously that it was not. I have taken many English courses here at the MC and feel confident in my writing abilities but was glad that I got the chance to expand my knowledge. I liked this class from the minute it started-brought everyone together and we have had many laughs, especially with our company of rocks in our little geology lab. Mush has made me value my writing more as well as show me more techniques that I can apply to my own writing in the future to make it better. I realized once we started reading the pieces in the packets how diverse our small group was, as everyone had different opinions about everything. I remember our first big debate with two fiction pieces by the same author…probably my favorite moment in this class thus far.

I was ecstatic to be selected as Poetry Editor for Mush. At first, I was a little bit intimidated once seeing the quantity of just poems that we had submitted by people, but my nerves went away the instant I started reading the pieces. For me, this was a big responsibility as I have never been on a school paper or yearbook committees, so I did not have too much experience in terms of making a magazine, but this class made it seem effortless. I’ve never told anyone, not my family or friends, but reading and writing poetry helped get me through some tough times during in my life and honestly I don’t know where I would be if I hadn’t turned to poetry to voice my thoughts and emotions. This role in Mush makes me feel as if I have a purpose and a goal to accomplish, whereas in my other classes I just sit there, take notes and take tests-nothing very exciting. I have loved most of the poetry that was submitted.

I was in for a shock when I realized how in depth the process was of selecting pieces for publication. I had submitted a piece last year and got rejected but still picked up Mush anyways and low and behold, at least 50% of the published pieces were editors, so for a little while I felt defeated and unsure if I should submit again, as I felt my pieces in all likelihood wasn’t given that much thought. Wrong! As soon as I saw how specific the process was in terms of separating what students wrote, community and alumni I realized the process took a lot more work than I expected. Knowing now that the pieces were read blindly when submitted made me start to understand why my piece could have been rejected-did not match up to other creative talent. I’m glad that Mush sticks with keeping the pieces being read blindly because if not, that takes away from the integrity of the magazine-if you read a piece by someone you know wrote it, it is likely that would get published just because of that reason. In truth, I am glad that I chose to take this class, for it has taught me a lot about writing and how I can improve. I am really going miss this class when it is over for the semester-so many fun memories and friends were made in the process of putting together a masterpiece. When I transfer to UWSP this fall,

I really hope they have a literary magazine so I can join that class and help create a masterpiece again.


By Nikki Sterling

This has been my second year with Mush, and it’s been such an experience!  I never imagined I would be creating a magazine that empowers so many people to get their writing and artwork out in the world.  After having gone through many head aches and many ‘aha!’ moments, I can truly appreciate the process of creating a magazine.  Even during my second year I had much to learn. 

As art editors we have to learn how to layout the pieces and try to keep them in their original form.  It may sound easy, but since we all have different computers and programs, it takes a lot of time to get everything set up.  As layout editors, we have to take the hard work from the other editors (art, prose and poetry editors) and put it all in one project.  Of course we have a lot of tedious work to do in order to get everything to line up just right.  Thankfully, the internet is our friend!  Once we get everything looking good, it’s time to send the project off to the printers.  Not even that can go right the first time.  Again we’re transferring the project from one computer to another so things may not align quite right.  Also, with a pair of fresh eyes, the mistakes we editors missed are brought forward so we can fix them.  After a few exchanges back and forth between Mush and the printers, we eventually get it right!  Now we wait for the final product so we can make it available to you readers!  

If any of you missed out on this year’s issue of Mush, don’t worry! You have plenty of time to prepare for next year’s issue.  Below you will find the information you need to get your artwork, poetry, prose, etc. to the University of Wisconsin Marathon County’s literary magazine, Mush.  


Send us up to five works of poetry, fiction, creative fiction, or artwork to Submissions will be

accepted starting Nov. 1, 2013 through 

Feb. 15, 2014


Selections will be made by Mush editors.  Due to limited space, shorter pieces will have better consideration.  Email Jill Stukenberg with questions at

By Shelby Artz

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This is my first year attending the University of Wisconsin Marathon County, and without realizing somehow I stumbled my way on to the staff of the school’s literary magazine called Mush. I originally thought that being a part of the Mush staff would turn out to be a lot like being an editor of my high school yearbook or newspaper. Turns out I was way wrong.

Being a part of the staff, I soon realized that every previous thought I had about what a literary magazine was, and what is consisted of, was wrong. I was completely unaware that editing and constructing was so different from all of the knowledge I already had. After working with the rest of the group, I soon realized that a literary magazine was a place for talented artists and authors to submit their work, and express what they are feeling on the inside while describing what they see on the outside. That was a big difference because the authors’ pieces could then be about anything. As the head editor my high school newspaper, the stories were mainly about the school, school events, and the surrounding community.

Discovering two differences was all I thought was going to happen, but boy was I wrong once again. In order for something to be published in the school’s literary magazine, all editors had to read, critique, and decide if the piece written by students, community members, or alumni would make it into this year’s issue. In my high school most pieces or articles written for the paper were not submitted by other people, some but not many were from community members and other students. Most were from the newspaper editor and other staff members. So as you can see I was amazed and my eyes were opened to a whole new world I had no idea even existed, but it didn’t stop there. The amount of work that went into discussing and choosing which pieces were going to make it into this year’s magazine was phenomenal! Each and every editor spent numerous hours each week carefully discussing each piece and fighting for it to make it into the magazine. Then each editing team with their own personal jobs soon took over, which included promoting the magazine, laying out each poetry, art and prose piece in the magazine, designing a cover, editing the writing pieces, and finally planning the release party for everyone to attend, that is only some of the tasks we as editors do.

Being part of the magazine staff has helped me realize many things. Whether it is the skills that it takes to construct and edit a literary magazine, or about people in general. There are only a few constructive minds working inside the concrete walls of the geology lab, but we are all different. Reading and admiring all the art, poetry, and prose pieces has led me to realize that people in our school also are different and very talented. As an editor, I have learned many things, and I’m still learning more each and every day. I went from not knowing exactly what a literary magazine was to being completely submersed into its creativeness. I can’t wait to see if the school I attend next year has a literary magazine staff that I can join!

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