Overhead view of the surrounding countryside

A New Era Dawns for Applewood’s 32-Year-Old Literary Magazine

Oct 10, 2022

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A new resident editorial board to usher in a fresh look for the heralded publication

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Spicy Apple co-editors Jan Voytko and Helen Kho (l to r).

Nowhere is the depth of Applewood’s cultural and artistic diversity more evident than in its longstanding literary magazine, the Spicy Apple. Produced by residents for residents since the community opened its doors in 1990, the first copies of the publication were manually typed and mimeographed by the editor and a few volunteers.

Today, the Spicy Apple is managed by a resident editorial board and two new co-editors, Helen Kho, who previously served as editor from 2012-2014, and new resident Jan Voytko, who brings digital design expertise. Jan is also an accomplished professional painter who owned The Garret Gallery in Red Bank.

We caught up with the new co-editors prior to their weekly editorial meeting to get an inside look at the updates to come:

Adding a modern look to a beloved resident magazine

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“Our quarterly publication will represent a creative medley of art, cartoons, prose, poetry, comedy and the world of Applewood,” explains Helen. “The talent of our residents is deep, wide and diverse, which, thankfully, provides us with a wealth of marvelous content.”

Helen says she welcomes Jan’s digital skills and impressive eye for content layout and design.

“With the help of publication software, the new format will take on a more professional and sophisticated look, including easier-to-read columns and a typeface and font size that’s easy on senior eyes,” Jan explains. “Our goal is for the Spicy Apple to be visually exciting to read, starting with a terrific cover.”

The co-editors agree the ultimate goal of the magazine is to give residents a platform to express who they really are and build connections with others through the expression of words and art.

 Art, photography, cartoons, prose, history, poetry—and much more

Resident-submitted content will offer a wide range of categories:

  • Fiction and non-fiction
  • Freehold and Monmouth County history
  • Resident favorite memories
  • What Do You Think? column citing residents’ opinions about a single topic
  • Poetry
  • Comedic content and cartoons
  • Applewood staff profile
  • Meet the Artist interview with contributing artists and writers
  • Residents Then & Now – Residents share past & present headshots
  • Next issue sneak peek

The eight-member editorial board is currently finalizing new format decisions during weekly meetings. The debut of the new publication is expected in late 2022 or early 2023.

To read a fascinating history of Applewood over the past 32 years, past copies of every issue of the Spicy Apple are cataloged in the Applewood library.

Applewood offers the platform to create, build, grow and thrive

Lifestyle at Applewood focuses on stress-free living, convenience, and enjoying everyday life. We offer an unrivaled variety of activities and events on our 40-acre private campus – whether that’s creating art, playing an instrument in our weekly Music Jam, learning something new at our TedTalks and Applewood University sessions, enjoying listening to the Monmouth Symphony rehearse in our Performing Arts Center, or trying AquaFit classes in our heated indoor pool. We offer tours of our community by appointment to interested seniors and their families. Call (732) 303-7416 to receive more information or complete the Contact Us card.