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What We’re Reading: Literary Magazines

2011 March 23

These three literary magazines are ones that I either subscribe to, or visit often. They vary in subject matter, so browse around – my hope is you find one that sticks with you.



This is my go-to in the lit world. Full of witty banter, honest essays, interviews, and provocative insight, my literary-o-meter goes sky-high after reading each issue. It’s also a great deal – 9 issues for $45, which is largely unheard of in the print literary magazine world. A great monthly column is by Nick Hornby (of About A Boy and High Fidelity fame) – and his book to read this month is The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot, which is also the Books and Bars selection of this month (Mar 29)! Check out our calendar for more info.



I discovered this literary magazine at AWP in Denver last year, skimming the tabletops at the book fair for anything intriguing. Versal’s covers immediately drew my eye. I later attended a panel about starting your own literary magazine, in which the founder of Versal was a panelist – and a very insightful one at that. While I paid more attention to her trade pointers at the time, I quickly fell in love with the journal itself. Pleasing design, startling beautiful art, and starkly strong poetry (although they’re branching out to other genres now, too) – through and through, this is a solid investment. Or do what I did: put it on your birthday/Christmas/Hanukkah list. Makes an excellent gift to yourself.


Alice Blue Review

I’ve recently been gorging myself on prose poetry, in efforts to write the form better myself (I’m a firm believer that the more you read, the more prepared you are to write). This online journal is where I go for prose poetry.  The website is simple, perhaps too simple for some, but the poems stand for themselves. Also take a look the poets’ bios – they are teeming with wonderful presses to check out.


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