Jillian Kyrou, Editor In Chief
I am a writer, gardener, and amateur naturalist based in Mansfield. I earned a BA in English and English Literature from The Ohio State University, where I worked as a student for the Center for Folklore Studies. My love for canonical literature and art is matched by my love for the weirder stuff: sci-fi, outsider art, folk tales, children’s literature, graphic novels, and zines of all stripes. Ecology, wildlife, conservation, public design, and human rights are all nonfiction subjects central to my interests.
I chose The Foxfire Book for its collective spirit and practical, unfussy approach to commemorating and preserving the skills of “plain living” in 1960’s rural Appalachia. The book is a compilation of articles that first appeared in Foxfire, the class magazine that editor Elliot Wigginton supervised during his time as a high school English teacher at the Rabun Gap-Nacoochee School in Georgia. In the introduction, Wigginton writes, “I am not sure what the magic formula is or whether I have it pegged yet, but it involves a chemistry that allows us to believe we may have worth after all…If this information is to be saved at all, for whatever reason, it must be saved now.” That aspect of assigning essential worth to a place, its people, and its creative and contemplative life, is at the center of my vision for Tributary Reader.
Llalan Fowler, Managing Editor
I am a Richland County native who returned here to my home ten years ago. Also known as The Bookstore Lady, I ran Main Street Books for nine years until the bookstore’s closing in 2020. I also wrote the Downtowner column for the Mansfield News Journal. Earlier, when I lived in Boston, I was the Nonfiction Editor for the online literary journal Fringe Magazine. These days I read a lot, take hikes as often as possible, and enjoy craft beer with my partner.
I look for character-driven novels and short stories with a strong sense of place: Bryan Washington’s Lot or American Salvage by Bonnie Jo Campbell. I love travel narratives like those of Pico Iyer and memoirs with a unique voice like Ordinary Girls by Jaquira Diaz. Also like fresh voices in poetry, such as Danez Smith, and the classic Adrienne Rich.
Crystal Davis Weese, Contributing Editor
Crystal is a Recruitment Coordinator with North End Community Improvement Collaborative. She is a certified career coach, entrepreneur, and busy community advocate who knows the struggle of trying to balance a career and family. Daily she helps provide the tools, strategy, and support to help job seekers create meaningful change in their careers. Crystal is a powerful force in the workplace and uses her positive attitude and tireless energy to encourage others to work hard and succeed. She’s a former Career Tech Educator, licensed Cosmetology Instructor, and graduate of Mount Vernon Nazarene University. She is inspired daily by her children and god-grandchildren. In her free time, Crystal is a community volunteer, traveler, novice yogi, who likes to sew, read, and binge watch Netflix with her sister.
Kate Shannon, Art Editor
I am an associate professor of art at The Ohio State University Mansfield where I teach image-based studio art courses. My digitally manipulated photographs have been exhibited across the United States and I have received several grants for my creative activity, including a recent Coca-Cola Critical Difference for Women Grant for Research on Women, Gender, and Gender Equity. My teaching and research have been recognized with several awards, including the OSU Mansfield Campus Award for Excellence in Scholarship and the OSU Mansfield Campus Award for Excellence in Teaching. I received my BFA from the University of Kentucky and my MFA from The Ohio State University in Columbus where I now live with my husband, kids, and cats.
A favorite publication on my bookshelf is Penelope Umbrico’s Photographs, which was published by Aperture. The catalog highlights collections of everyday photographs Umbrico appropriated from the Internet. The cover is a detail of her piece Sunsets from Flickr, a collection of sunsets that strangers photographed and uploaded to the web. She says, “Perhaps part of the beauty of taking a picture of a sunset is that while you are doing it it’s likely that a million other people are doing it as well – at exactly the same time. I love this idea of collective practice, something we all engage in despite any artistic concern, knowing that there have been millions before and there will be millions after.”
Tributary Reader is a 501c3 nonprofit thanks to the generous sponsorship of RCDG ArtSector