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Passing of lit mag founder, new book festivals, new magazine for reprints, tons of editor interviews, Best Online Lit Mags, jobs, contests, calls for submissions and more
Greetings Lit Magdeleines,
First, a note of sadness as I relate news of the passing of Jules Chametzky, Founder of The Massachusetts Review and one of the founders of the Coordinating Council of Literary Magazines. Chametzky will be remembered as “a first-rate literary scholar, writer and editor,” “a seminal figure who pushed for more progressive values and greater diversity on the UMass campus,” and someone with “unbounded humanity and decency.” Chametzky was 93.
In brighter news, The Brooklyn Book Festival returned this past weekend, “to the delight of publishers and the reading public alike.” The event was hybrid. “Elly Hong, literary editorial fellow at the literary magazine The Common, said the magazine has published its last three issues virtually due to the pandemic, so she was thrilled to be able to share physical copies with people.”
Did you know that many literary festivals offer space to lit mags? If you’re an editor, this is a great space to sell your wares. For writers, this is an excellent opportunity to see physical copies of magazines, get discounts on purchases, meet editors and make personal connections. Here are some upcoming book festivals this year. Know of others? Let us know!
Speaking of books, this year’s Best American Poetry has just dropped. The 2021 edition was edited by former U.S. poet laureate Tracy K. Smith. Featured lit mags include Green Mountains Review, Orion, New Ohio Review, Poem-a-Day, and many more.
Meanwhile, so many new and long-standing lit mags got press recently.
Welcome to new journal Litbop: Art and Literature in the Groove. This mag comes from indie publisher Thrilling Tales. What makes this mag different? They do not shy away from printing previously published material. Says Editor Tim Chapman, “Most editors refuse to look at work that’s appeared elsewhere. A ten-year-old blog, a now-defunct magazine—it makes no difference; if it’s been published before, it’s editorial poison. That seems silly to me. There are great stories out there itching for a new audience.”
The editors of Blue Mesa Review, Boulevard, Electric Literature and The Audacity were part of a roundtable chat on this podcast. Say the producers, “In this episode, we’ve pulled back the curtain on what happens behind the scenes of a literary magazine. It’s a great one for those of you who’ve never worked on a literary magazine before or perhaps you are just starting to submit your work…it offers some advice for what to do, some insight into what editors look for, and some sense of the labor involved in putting out a literary magazine to the public.”
Here, you will find an interview with Miranda Ramírez, Founding Editor of Defunkt Magazine and Assistant Editor of the Texas Review. Says Ramírez, “Defunkt Magazine is a project born from writerly and artistic friends. A bunch of opinionated nerds who thought they could do something important while looking cool. Defunkt's mission is to showcase marginalized voices and its creation came from witnessing excellent work left behind in the slush pile because it wasn't ‘relatable.’”
Here is an interview with Nicolas Kanellos, Founder and Director of Arte Publico Press. This press began as a lit mag in the ‘60s, and is now “the oldest and largest Latino publisher in the country.”
Over at Book Riot, you can now find a list of 20 Must-Read Online Literary Journals. “These new online literary journals are making great impacts on the literary scene, featuring voices from the around the world, sometimes in more than one language, and giving voice to marginalized communities. Especially having debuted during a pandemic and featuring such astounding work, these particular journals deserve much gratitude and celebration.”
If it is work within the fast-paced industry of literary magazine publishing that you seek, opportunities are here.
Canthius is now accepting applicants for a Managing Editor and a Social Media Coordinator. “Canthius is an intersectional feminist magazine and non-profit whose goal is to promote equity in Canadian literary publishing.” Both positions are paid.
Zoetic Press is seeking an Editor. “Since 2014, Zoetic Press has collected some of the best voices in short-form literature, both established and new authors. We offer our award-winning journal, NonBinary Review, four times a year…Even if you have ZERO experience, we want you—after all, how do you GET experience if no one is willing to let you get a foot in the door?” This is a volunteer position.
As for all of you getting your submission mojo underway, be sure to check out Erika Dreifus’s newest newsletter, where you’ll find a roundup of contests, competitions and more.
If you’re feeling a bit shy to hit Send, know that you’re not alone. In How to Deal with Rejection (and Get Revenge) Like Edgar Allan Poe, Catherine Baab-Muguira reminds us that “[A]ll of us will face rejection at some point. No one is exempt, which makes it all the more important that you understand how to have the right response—that, no matter your age or exact situation, you harness the gut-searing motivation that rejection can provide you, and make an ardent resolution like Poe himself made.”
Finally, in case you missed it, we’ve got a new and exciting line-up of editor interviews this month. Plus another Submissions Q & A session and our inaugural Submissions Study Hall! Check it out and join the fun.
And that you saucy scorpions, grasping with those searing claws of yours, you lucky lions, luminous in luminescent lushness, you who are a twin, with everywhere your own reflection staring back at you, but oh!, you swimmy fish, free and floating in a fever of forevers, you with all your signs and symbols, you who are stardust, diamonds, a sparkling radiance of fiery constellations, you creators of all life, sun glowing in your eyes and bad moon rising stuck in your head, you and you, dear writers, everywhere, right this very moment, dawning in the age of, dawning in the age of, is the news in literary magazines.
Have a most soulful week, pals.
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