is news, information, and guides to literary magazines, independent publishers, creative writing programs, alternative periodicals, indie bookstores, writing contests, and more.

Published May 12, 2010
The Spring 2010 issue of Fifth Wednesday Journal includes works selected by guest editors Edie Meidav, fiction, and Monica Berlin, poetry, and fall guest editors have been announced: Amy Newman, poetry editor, and Lon Otto, fiction editor.

Fifth Wednesday Journal has also added interns to their staff for the first time, and welcome the efforts of Cassandra Clegg, Richard Clegg, and Rachel Hamsmith in this issue.
Published May 12, 2010
The Spring 2010 issue of The Bitter Oleander offers readers a 20-page special feature: Pierre-Albert Jourdan's "The Approach" - writings from his last notebooks translated from the French with an introduction and end-notes by John Taylor, and also including several b&w photos.
Published May 11, 2010
"When The Southern Review resident scholar Andrew Ervin came to me last summer with the idea of doing a special feature on baseball for our spring 2010 issue," starts Jeanne Leiby's Editor's Note, "I was skeptical. My initial concern was that our slush pile would be overrun by Sunday-afternoon-playing-catch-with-Dad sentimentality and easy metaphors that didn't challenge, compel, or embrace the literary standards that represent The Southern Review's history and present. In short, I didn't think there was much to say about baseball that hadn't been said a thousand times." Instead, Leiby writes of her amazement at the complexity of works received, the translations representing baseball's far-reaching appeal: "the depth and breadth was astounding." And once again proved the value of literary magazines in our contemporary culture to bring out new work: "the work not yet seen and the voices not yet heard." Until now.
Published May 10, 2010
World Literature Today's newest issue (May/June 2010) includes a special section devoted to speculative fiction. Editor Daniel Simon writes: "SF in WLT?" and answers with, "In the current issue, it matters less how we define the world and more how we see through it, or around it, and into the realm of other possibilities." And so, SciFi it is - featuring Kij Johnson, China Mieville, Federik Pohl, George Zebrowski, James Gunn, Lavie Tidhar, Pamela Sargent, Paul Kincaid, David Fowler, Grady Hendrix, Tom Shippey, and Davor Slamnig.

Exclusive online content includes Rob Bollmar's podcast interview with Cory Doctorow, the complete text of the short stories by Pamel Sargent and Lavie Tidhar (excerpted in the print edition), Paul Di Filippo's extended reviews of the best speculative fiction of 2009, and much more SF-related content.
Published May 06, 2010
Last year, Poetry Northwest celebrated its 50th anniversary, "quietly" - as editor Kevin Craft notes. The publication has not survived these five decades unscathed, having suspended publication briefly at the turn of the new millennium. But Poetry Northwest came back "reestablished as a nonprofit enterprise on a foundation of community support." Facing and embracing change once again, Poetry Northwest has relocated from the Attic Writers Workshop in Portland, and returned to its birthplace of the Puget Sound region. The magazine is now "housed and published by the Written Arts Program at Everett Community College. But," Craft adds, "it will depend, as it always has, on the support and interest of community of readers all over the country."

This newest issue of Poetry Northwest (Spring & Summer 2010) features works by new and known writers: Bob Hicok, Linda Gregg, Paisley Rekdal, Sierra Nelson, Christopher Merrill, amy Greacen, Andrew Zawacki, Jason Whitmarsh, Joelle Biele, Jeff Hardin, David Sofield, Ted Gilley, Ronald Wallace, Spikanth Reddy, Kelli Russel Agodon, Rick Barot, Rod Jellema, Eamon Brennan, Lilah Hegnauer, Daniel Groves, Daniel Lamberton, Zach Savich, Jay B. Thompson, and Kevin Craft. Artwork by Claire Cowie and Jay Bryant.
Published April 29, 2010
The Kenyon Review Editor David H. Lynn's editorial in the newest issue (spring 2010) comments on the "future of literary publishing." TKR itself went part-digital a while back with KROnline to complement TKR in print, as well as adding a daily blog, online book discussions, and collaborating with JSTOR to complete an electronic archive.

Lynn comments, "It surely would have been easier simply to continue printing this journal four times a year and leave it at that. But I'm convinced that sooner or later, such isolated publications will come to seem anachronisms, curiosities, not vibrant players in the literary community."

But far from being a full-fledged missive on going digital, Lynn recognizes the continuing place of ink and paper in our lives, its historical relevance, and its place in the lives of future readers and writers, which is why TKR will be launching a small letterpress operation. "Even as we develop literary media for the future, I believe it's our responsibility to keep the old technologies, teaching our associates where all the current publishing structures originated. Letting them get their hands dirty."

TKR is planning printing opportunities for their summer program, and looks to add chapbooks and broadsides in the future, "just for the fun of it."
Published April 27, 2010
Ploughshares, Spring 2010, edited by Elizabeth Strout, opens with her introduction, not just to this issue of the journal, but to Journals. She writes of her first awkward year away at college, where (like so many of us) she believed others to be so much more confident, comfortable, and learned. She slinks into the library and dashes to the first stacks, the periodical section, where she finds familiar magazines: "But I found a whole row of other things. Journals, some thick, others quite thin, lay on a tilting shelf with their faces toward me. Some had colorful covers, some had very simple and unassuming covers. Inside them--the type pressed into the paper, so that even touching them brought a certain thrill--I found story after story, poem after poem. Who knew? I had not known."

Do you remember discovering literary magazines? It seems most of us do not know them until our college years, and often times by accident. I have made it my "mission" as a teacher to introduce my students to literary magazines, to make the introduction formal, purposeful, and as often as possible. To put a magazine into a young reader's hands and say, "Read this, I'd like to know what you think of it." And to be rewarded, time and again, as I was the time I put a copy of Agni into a student's hands. She returned next class, looking at me wild-eyed, and said, "I never knew writing like this existed."

And it is to the credit of editors as much as writers that this kind of writing "exists" and can be put into the hands of readers of all ages. New Red Cedar Review Managing Editors Ashley Luster and Emily Wollner comment: "As we embraced our roles as managing editors of Red Cedar Review, the journal that we had grown to love over the past few years, we made it a priority to define the nature of the material with which we were working. What does it mean exactly to be a literary journal? Associated commonly with dusty library tomes and complex pleonastic prose, the 'L' word is one that often frightens away people who lie outside of its writing communities and seemingly elite social circles. It seems, though, that the literary merit of a creative piece is not necessarily a consequence of its form or its language, but is something that lies within the way these factors work in tandem to present an idea. In this way, we strove to expand the definition of literary in this issue of RCR to include any spark of creativity that lends itself to ink and paper."
Published April 26, 2010
Visit The Georgia Review to view silhouette art by Kara Walker, featured both online and in the newest issue (Spring 2010). From the portfolio introduction:

Critics have assigned labels ranging from “provocative” to “exploitative” to Walker’s overall project. At the crux of this controversy is the silhouette itself, which reduces a subject to the least possible amount of information and forces the viewer to rely on stereotypical hints—clothing, hairstyle, exaggerated physical characteristics—leading toward two-dimensional “truths” that make explicit the work’s deep sense of ambiguity. Viewers must become (discomfortingly) reductionist themselves; Walker offers no choice but to understand and then implicitly to accept the stereotypes in order to identify her characters.
Published April 24, 2010
Annalemma's issue six is the magazine's first themed issue, "Sacrifice," and features images of a variety of art forms by a variety of artists coupled with each written work featured. Want to free copy? Annalemma will give one away to the winner of their Twitter contest. Followers just need to tweet: “I’d be willing to give up (insert noun here) for the new issue of #Annalemma” The best tweet wins. Deadline: Sunday (4/25) at midnight EST.
Published April 14, 2010
Reader's guides are one of my favorite features to encourage teachers to use lit mags in the classroom. The Healing Muse, SUNY Upstate Medical University's journal of literary and visual arts, has begun developing Reader's and Educator's Guides for their publication. On the site now are guides for volumes 7 and 8. Here are a couple of the questions for volume 8:

In the third paragraph of Bromberg’s “Poetry and the Creative Healing Process” (p.31), the author discusses the relationship between community and healing. In what ways can writing about illness be therapeutic? What difference does it make to write for an audience?

The speakers of “Puzzled” (p. 81) and “After a Mastectomy” (p. 32) both express yearnings to be made “whole.” How do physical changes in the body affect self-perception and identity? In what ways do the speakers seek help from others to work through these feelings?

We welcome any/all Feedback.