Opening the Spring 2020 issue of Boulevard is the winner of the journal’s 2019 Nonfiction Contest for Emerging Writers: “My Mom Claims I Had a Drink with My Rapist. I Investigate.” by Emi Nietfeld.
In this piece, Nietfeld looks back to June 28, 2010 when she was raped while in Budapest and to the conversations she had with her mother immediately after and eight years later about the incident. This investigation focuses on the drink that Nietfeld did or didn’t have and the influence the drink had on her mother’s reaction to the rape.
Nietfeld breaks the piece up into sections, investigating in-person conversations, emails that were sent in 2010, and her old computer documents. After she presents the “evidence,” she breaks it down and discusses it. I found this approach to be interesting and impactful as she turns a critical eye on past conversations, her memory, and her relationship with her mother.
Not only is this piece a strong start to the issue, but it demonstrates why Nietfeld deserves to have won the Nonfiction Contest for Emerging Writers.