Putting together the first issue of the Bear Paw Arts Journal has been the best kind of
adventure. We were humbled by the quality of submissions we received. From fifteen-hundred
poems, stories, and memoirs from over five-hundred writers, we accepted about three percent
of submissions. Some of our authors have published multiple books; others were seeking their
first publication. Their pieces range from humorous to serious, playful to haunting. The
common thread among them is that they capture the extra-ordinary moments of everyday life.
We are also honored to feature two artists in this issue: Emilee Luke and Emma Grey Rose.
Emilee Luke's photographs showcase the beauty of the Bear Paw Mountains in all seasons and
from all angles. Emma Grey Rose, a poetry contributer, is also an artist, and the tone of her
work in various media, whimsical and melancholic by turns, pairs well with the literary pieces
we received. You will see their work featured throughout this issue. Be sure to check out our
interviews with these talented artists as well.
I am grateful for the assistance of editors Roger Hart (flash fiction) and Becky Fjelland Brooks (micro memoir), who were willing to go along with my semi-crazy idea to start a new journal. Also, two Montana State University Northern graphic design students, under the tutelage of professor
Mary Ward, helped to put the issue together: Mychaela Hall created the website for us, and
Tana Gorecki bravely tackled designing the first issue. We couldn't have done it without their
hard work and ingenuity.
We hope you enjoy the inaugural issue!