Whether you create or simply appreciate art, prose or poetry, you are welcome to attend MyWord!, the Touchstones release party taking place on Tuesday, April 14 at 7p.m. at Centre Stage.

“MyWord! is the best way to see what the finest writers and artists in UVU have to offer,” said Elena Yazykova, the Event Coordinator for Touchstones. “It’s a night filled with literature, great food and music. From humor to horror, from experimental to elevated, it’s all-inclusive. And the best part — it’s all enjoyed in great company.”

Touchstones, the feature of the event, is a biannually published journal of literary and visual art pieces from some of the most artistically brilliant students at UVU.

All students are welcome to submit their own original work which will then be impartially considered for publication in the journal.

“All forms of art are considered, both representational and non-representational. As far as prose and poetry go, we publish literary fiction, non-fiction, and poetry,” said Heather Hadley, TOUCHSTONES’ Editor-in-Chief.

“This might be one of my favorite poems that I have written” said Meghan Wiemer, whose poem, “At the Corner of Then and Now” has been published in Touchstones along with two other poems. “I am not sure if I can say that I wrote it since it is from a newspaper and all I did was black out some words. But who ‘owns’ words anyway?”

Many precautions are taken to insure that each submission receives an unbiased assessment. These include complete anonymity, multiple evaluations and precise codes of conduct for staff submissions.

“We are fairly strict with our rules, because we want the pieces to stand on their own merit,” Hadley said.

Along with the responsibility of choosing which pieces will be published, the Touchstones staff also has to produce the journal itself.

“There are multiple steps in putting together a large publication like this and many opportunities for error at each step. But it is an invaluable experience for any English major wishing to go into a production aspect of English like editing.” Hadley said.

The issue of Touchstones to be released this semester of Spring 2009 is sure to be completely individualistic. While past issues have occasionally been dubbed angst-filled, this edition’s tone has been described as “seriously funny” and “absurd” by Hadley.

“I would classify my piece in Touchstones as magical realism/subtle horror,” said Loran Cook, author of a prose piece being published in this issue. “It’s about a boy named Raz who has an obsession with the age and weight guessing booths at public entertainment venues, and the people who man the booths. I love mixing real life situations and activities with things that are supernatural, unexplainable or horrific.”

Another factor characteristic of this issue is that more art pieces were selected than poetry or prose pieces, a testament to the journal’s commitment to both the English and art departments. The artwork is immaculately reproduced though a printing process which gives notice to the subtle nuances of each piece.

“I am intrigued with pattern and repetition as well as texture,” said Cassidy Tuttle, whose photograph “Spiral Stair” is being published in this upcoming issue. “As I was walking down this staircase I fell in love with the elegance of the handrail and the juxtaposition between it and the smooth steps. I find joy ordinary things that are so beautiful and often overlooked or missed.”

“I was really happy to learn that my piece ‘Copacabana Life’ was selected to be published,” said Dave Iba, whose photo will also be published in the issue. “I took the picture while I was backpacking through South America last summer. It shows the landscape of the beach as well as the people that have made Copacabana a way of life.”

The release party will highlight the published work in this forthcoming issue with exhibited art and prose and poetry readings.

“I was asked to read my poem ‘Doesn’t Catch Flies’ at My Word,” said Ethan Williams, who is having a photo published as well. “My poem is a DaDa poem in the sense that it is a conglomeration of words that do not normally fit together. But they do sound very nice together and have a rythym.”

Take a break from finals and unwind at the MyWord! event which is sure, among all of its completely inventive pieces, to have something to catch your fancy.