About Varnish

Varnish Journal is an online publication that seeks to meet the divide between literature and art, highlighting work with raw yet polished merit. Varnish wants your best work: poetry, fiction, flash fiction, creative nonfiction, art, visual poetry, or work that pushes boundaries. Varnish also appreciates traditional, well-crafted work of literary and artistic value.

Varnish – noun – var·nish \ˈvär-nish\

  • a :  a liquid preparation that when applied to a surface dries to form a hard lustrous typically transparent coating
  • b :  the covering or glaze given by the application of varnish (1) :  something that suggests varnish by its gloss (2) :  a coating (as of deposits in an internal combustion engine)

Varnish publishes cutting edge literature and art. We want work with meaning—work that goes deeper than the words or paint. We want your medium, arts and/or letters, to be the tip of the iceberg. We want to be taken into the depths of feeling. Let your words and art shine. Take us on a journey.

Varnish, based in Los Angeles, was established in August 2017 as the collaborative effort between Nathan Elias and Alexi Milano. Both advocates of art and literature, they created this journal as a means to showcase the polished creative works of others. Varnish is published quarterly, in October, January, April, and July.


Abouthe editors:


Nathan Elias has served as genre editor for Lunch Ticket and is the author of the novelette A Myriad of Roads That Lead to Here. His work has appeared in The Blotter, Drunk Monkeys, Eclectica Magazine, Hobart, Literary Orphans, Birdville Magazine, Drunk in a Midnight Choir and is forthcoming in Moledro Magazine, The Literary Nest, Monzano Mountain Review, and Stonecoast Review. He is currently pursuing an MFA in Creative Writing at Antioch University Los Angeles.


Alexi Milano is a writer, illustrator, painter, and educator in Los Angeles, CA.  She enjoys teaching her students how to both push boundaries and entertain with their own writing. An advocate of children’s literacy, she believes strongly in the power of words and images, and can’t wait to view yours. Her poetry has appeared in Red Fez, In Between Hangovers, Poppy Road, and Black Poppy Review and is forthcoming in Poems For All and elsewhere.

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