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Like a good parent with broccoli, I force my friends to consume The Prompt, knowing that if I add plenty of melted cheese and really sell it, they will understand the nutritional benefits and recognize that they do, in fact like it of their own volition. It’s not sexy, and it’s not good marketing. It’s just honesty.

If you don’t eat this, you’ll die early, fat, and unhappy.

Fortunately, I don’t have to spend my whole life with broccoli dangling from the end of my fork, making airplane noises, and begging readers to open wide. Why? Because these writers, man. Some of them are so good that I just want to airdrop their work into communities with instructions: Here. You need this. To live. Case in point?

Zach Straus, our 2016 Writer of the Year

I asked our staff to vote for our Writer of the Year award, and I find it telling that Zach got ZERO votes for runner-up. He didn’t need them. He was the clear, all-out winner.

Perhaps it’s his versatility or his voice or his storytelling. He owns every format—essays, short stories, poems, and a strange breed of emoji, which is probably the future of communication (God help us all). He creates characters you love and hate and pity, stories that make you think, and dangerously high stakes.

Zach does nostalgia and pop culture and gayness, and he’s cornered the market on sadness. He’s just sofuckinggood and sofuckingclever and sofuckingfunny. His work makes me giddy, and I feel hashtag blessed to bring it to our readers every week.

As a writer, the only thing cliché about Zach is that he can’t accept how talented he is, or any sincere compliment, in general. Sorry, Zach, but this is undeniable. No backsies.

Zach is our Writer of the Year because of course he is. Because he makes you feel things. Every single time.

The Zach Straus Sampler Collection

Personal Essays

Burn Calories After Reading

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Pop Culture, Lifestyle, and the Downfall

Go West: Taking Down Trump with Kanye 2020

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Emoji Jam Fest

Emojis to the Rescue: How to Text Your Boss About {Why You Are Quitting}

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For a complete look at Zach’s published works, visit his author page.

Kelaine Conochan

The editor-in-chief of this magazine, who should, in all honesty, be a gym teacher. Don’t sleep on your plucky kid sister.

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About The Prompt
A sweet, sweet collective of writers, artists, podcasters, and other creatives. Sound like fun?
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