The Cloudscent Journal is a new online publication of fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and art from contributors ages 12-25. With the mission “to provide the space of artistic freedom and safety for youth creatives,” The Cloudscent Journal is aptly named after “the seemingly limitless yet youthful nature of the sky,” which Founder and Editor-in-Chief Vivan Huang says has inspired their desire “to provide artistic freedom and expression of young artists in hopes to publish work that is imaginative, explorative, and transcendent of all boundaries.”
“We are made up of a team of young artists ourselves,” Huan says, “and can empathize with the difficulty of getting published as a younger artist. We started our literary magazine as we wanted to open publication opportunities for young artists.”
The team behind the publication is spirited with creativity, with General Editors Anne Matanis and Ava Barnaby; Poetry Editors Estan Rodriguez, Maggie Wang, Dre Levant, and Eleanor Gonzales-Poirie; and Prose Editors April Yu, Adenah Furquan, Freddie Ahn, Calvin Huang, and Lynne Inouye, all of whose experiences combine to create extensive reading, writing, and publishing credentials.
For writers interested in sharing their works, The Cloudscent Journal has a solid process in place. “Submissions are read by both our team of editors and the editor-in-chief,” Huang explains, “and go through a very careful and thoughtful evaluation of multiple rounds. We offer detailed feedback upon request, and we hope to aim for a response time of one-to-three months.”
For readers stopping by The Cloudscent Journal, “expect to find a lot of explorative and surrealistic works, with a variety of frenzied emotions and creative stories,” Huang says. Some recent contributors include Ariana Duckett, lien-huong n., Max Gillette, Vicki Lin, and Tessa Wilkinson.
With their first issue under their belt and the second in process, Huang offered some insightful commentary on the start-up experience. “Some positives have been being able to view the viewpoints and art of so many different people; it is so exciting to have the opportunity to see so much wonderful and unique art from peers of around our age. It is also an amazing feeling being able to publish artists – especially those who are being published for the first time by us – as it keeps us going and motivates us to continue striving for our goal. There have been very few negatives so far, but perhaps the interference of our editors’ personal lives is one. Maintaining our publication takes up a lot of time, and sometimes our personal lives get in the way of prioritizing our journal though we still try our very best to do so.”
As with many literary ventures, hearts and hopes are always in the right place, as Huang looks to the future of The Cloudscent Journal, “As a publication, it is our desire to open up more opportunities for underprivileged communities (which may include special issues and/or contests targeted towards a specific group of youth artists), and for us to eventually become a paying market. We want to give back to the literary community as much as we can, and our future plans have been centered around that idea. The Cloudscent Journal is currently partnering with Healthline Zine and swim press for a contest, and we hope young writers will submit to it!”