THEMA :: NewPages Guide to Literary Magazines
many plots/one premise
About THEMA: THEMA is a theme-related literary journal of stories, poetry, artwork and photography. Each issue has a different unusual theme.
Editor: Virginia Howard
Metairie, LA 70011-8747
Phone: (504) 940-7156
Genres: fiction, poetry, artwork, photography
Response time: 3 months after premise deadline Payment: short story $25; short-short/poem/artwork $10 ISSN: 1041-4851 Founded: 1990 Issues per year: 3 Copy Price: $10 Average pages: 150 Sample price (postpaid): $10 (US), $15 (CAD) Subscription (Ind): $20 (US), $30 (CDN) Subscription (Inst): $20 (US), $30 (CAD)
Publisher’s Description: Each issue of THEMA literary journal is based on a different unusual theme. The journal is designed to provide readers with a unique and entertaining collection of artistic theme interpretations, in the form of stories, poetry, black-and-white artwork, and photography. It also provides a stimulating forum for established and emerging literary artists and serves as source material and inspiration for teachers of creative writing.
The birth of THEMA explains our passion. THEMA was born in a Chinese restaurant 1988 as the result of curiosity over how different writers would respond to a single quirky theme—specifically, stories involving the fortune cookies received that day. What had started as a writing challenge among friends resulted in our first issue: Fortune Cookies. It was like eating peanuts—we couldn’t stop. Strange themes kept popping into our heads; how would various imaginations react to them? We had to know! After 25 years of publication, our curiosity remains insatiable. The diversity of stories, poems, and visual interpretations of the single strange theme still delights us.
"I wish more magazines were like this one." - NewPages review (Off on a Tangent, THEMA 16:1 spring 2004).
THEMA is celebrating its 25th anniversary! What better way to begin the year than with an issue titled White Wine Chilling (25.1, Spring 2013)? A suitable beginning to this celebratory issue is Norbert Petsch’s “Wild Sock Eye,” and a suitable ending is Sue Stuhaug’s illustration, “Here’s to You!” Between the beginning and the end, white wine was used in many ways, as in Dennis Trujillo’s instructive poem, “How to Survive a Hellish Day,” and in a surprising context in Gary R. Hoffman’s story, “There Was Also a Beautiful Nurse Wearing Red High Heels.” Come have a literary sip and help us celebrate.
Who keeps it tidy? Who indeed? In answering this question for the Who Keeps It Tidy? issue of THEMA (24:3, Autumn 2012), authors came up will all sorts of people and situations in which tidiness was a critical issue, whether it involved a messy person (“Roaches, Sponges, and Hamburger Grease” by Elise R. Hopkins), a too-tidy person (“29 Spaces” by Karen Beatty), a maid in a nursing home (“Stella’s Starwish” by E. F. Verrillo), a cluttered computer (“Scherzi Quartet: Before Donating Jim’s Computer” by Karla Linn Merrifield) or even a piece of a squirrel’s tail (“A Fall Day” by Charlotte F. Otten).
Who would have suspected that so many poets were such sly wags? They embraced this dual premise with enthusiasm and melded the two halves of the theme—wisecracks and poems—into a wisecracking poetic laughfest. Prepare to chuckle or groan, depending on your own sense of humor. Although this issue is heavy on poetry, hence the slimness of the volume, our prose authors found their own unique approaches to the challenge, not entirely for chuckles. This issue (24:2, Summer 2012) features work by Robert Funge, James Penha, James Scruton, Erika Hoffman, Pat Tompkins, Peter E. Murphy, Lenny Lianne, Janis Butler Holm, Judith Overmier, Matthew J. Spireng, and more.
last updated 3/25/2013