Photo collage of 2022 content contributors.

2022 Retrospective | Marti McKenna

Creators Made the Emerald Shine in 2022

by Marti McKenna

The Emerald will be observing a team-wide wellness pause from Dec. 15 to Jan. 2, and most publishing will be on hiatus, with the exceptions of four pieces, of which this is one, wherein editors look back at 2022 and some of the work that made the Emerald shine.

As an editor here at the Emerald, it brings me such joy to work with our contributing writers, photographers, and artists to bring you stories you won’t see anywhere else. I’m proud of the work we do, and I’m grateful to the community for responding to that work with the support that makes it possible. We couldn’t do this work without you. Thank you.

As I prepare to leave 2022 in the rearview mirror, I’m thankful for the opportunity to look back over the year and highlight a few pieces, among so many, that I was privileged to work on with Emerald contributors this year. Enjoy.

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It’s especially difficult to choose just one Watchdragon story; award-winning reporter Carolyn Bick’s work has been important and impactful this year from start to finish. But the story that stands out for me is this one, wherein Carolyn recapped all their 2021–2022 reporting on the whistleblower complaint by a former Office of Inspector General (OIG) auditor. 

Reproductive Justice

Megan Burbank tackles reproductive justice issues with a skilled pen and a clear passion for the subject matter. Every column Megan writes is insightful and informative, but the one that really stood out for me this year was her look at the film Sweetheart Deal, “a humanizing and tender portrait of what life looks like on the margins of a city that would often prefer to pretend it doesn’t have any.”

Weekend Reads

Fiction & Poetry

I’m pleased to close out this retrospective by sharing a couple of standout pieces from our fiction and poetry offerings in 2022. First, a poem from Helen Collier responding brilliantly to an old saw:

And finally, this lovely short story of love and food and grace by Kathya Alexander:

If you made it this far, I’d like to thank you once again for being part of what makes the Emerald great. Wishing you the joy of the holidays and a fabulous new year.


Marti McKenna is a writer/editor living and working in Beacon Hill. She has been a fiction editor and publisher, a games writer, a country/pop singer, and a pizza-slinger, among other things. She’s proud to be an editor for the South Seattle Emerald.

📸 Featured Image: Photo collage of 2022 Emerald content contributors created by Emerald team.

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