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Fiction Writers and Publishing Magazine Report By David Jones
2 Table of Contents Fact Sheet Why I Chose Newport Review Comparison Table Prose Reviews Interview with Katherine Kulpa 3 4 5 6 11 .
We love stories with a strong sense of language. We are open to most genres and genre-blending fiction. but are not interested in anything formulaic. creative nonfiction. art and photography Submission Guidelines: “We welcome well-written fiction of (almost) all lengths. flash fiction. fan fiction. You may send up to two flash fiction pieces (up to 1000 words).org/ Email address: edit@newportreview. We don’t publish children’s stories. from flash and short-short works to full-length stories (up to about 7000 words). Please send one short story (1000 words+) at a time. two pieces max) Contributor Payment: No CLMP Member: Yes AWP Member: Yes . poetry. or stories whose sole purpose is to impart a moral lesson or push a political or religious viewpoint.” Reading Period: Varies for each issue Simultaneous Submissions: Yes (only for flash.3 Fact Sheet Online magazine: Newport Review Web address: http://newportreview. emotional richness and vivid characters.org Founded: Online-only Journal in 2007 Editor/Founder: Katherine Kulpa Frequency: Biannual What they Publish: fiction.
and I was attracted to some of the work.4 Why I Chose Newport Review I found Newport Review on the class list of fiction markets. The website also contains a link to Writers Resources. I like the magazine’s sensibilities and its commitment to good writing. I decided to just check it out. Overall. the competition is pretty tight. which includes a list of other journals and publications that Newport recommends. The editing is top notch. I also like Newport because it gives emerging writers a fair chance. Each issue has a “New Voices” section that introduces readers to an unpublished author. I’d feel especially proud of making the cut. no matter the writers’ experience. . This is a good way of building community and exposing writers to other potential markets. I stumbled into Apocalyptic Liquor Store by Penni Jones in Issue 4 (Winter 2009) and was impressed by the craft of it. And because the magazine doesn’t publish that many fiction pieces each issues (3-6). and the pieces are compelling with a variety of voices. the work is impressive. but the quality is certainly attainable.
The gender balance in each issue is about even. What shocked me. and there is also roughly an equal balance of flash and longer fiction. This is not to say that students can’t get published here. but it tends to learn more towards fiction than CNF.5 Comparison of Issues Over Time Issue 3 (Spring/Summer 2009) Fic:Flash:CNF:Poetry POV 1st:2nd:3rd (Fiction only) Men:Women (Fiction and CNF) Students:Non-students (Fiction and CNF) Flash Contest Winners Included (No Winner for Issue 5) 1:9 1:7 0:8 4:6 3:5 4:4 4:5:1:6 5:0:5 Issue 4 (Fall/Winter 2009) 3:3:1:8 4:1:1 Issue 5 (Summer 2010) 5:1:3:9 2:0:4 The magazine has a clear variety of fiction. nonfiction and poetry. is large disparity between students and nonstudents getting published here. which is awesome. . though. It seems like the magazine is open to any compelling POV. It just means that the ones that do can definitely write.
I just said no. Dust and Ice by Jan English Leary is a first person narrative. . and never looked back. she changes her entire outlook on relationships. the shit hit the fan and I called it quits. This comes through from the narrator’s fast.out of the blue. While they watch. trusting him so much that I’d follow him anywhere. and there are other fish in the sea. and it still has a clear story arc. told in a domestic setting.” The piece is told entirely in model summary.” But. and I was riding for a fall. the narrator thinks about her love of Brian. The very first line of the story is: “First rule of writing: Avoid clichés like the plague. the future lies ahead. concise voice. but I think it works well for the story movement. The story never has to show a scene. “They were the best years of my life.” There is a clear story arc that begins with the woman getting married.” It then proceeds to tell an entire story using nothing but clichéd lines that people use when telling a love story.” She uses these botched relationships as inspiration to write the Book of Love. . picked up my marbles. The unnamed female narrator is with her boyfriend Brian. Eventually the woman becomes restless and starts a fling with a stranger. I could see the writing on the wall. “I think I can understand loving someone so much. But it takes two to tango. Then she impulsively gets bored with that and “. that ultimately leads to them getting married. In the end. . placed in a domestic setting. watching a meteor. The unnamed female narrator tells the story of her relationship with a man. with the use of clichés. tying to make a commitment to one person. I can see for miles. on a blanket in their backyard. “The playing field’s been leveled. and the best is yet to come.6 Prose Reviews Issue 3 The Book of Love by Deborah Dashow Ruth is a first person flash piece.
The image of the brothers is given clearly and quickly. “His second hand . She doesn’t say this directly but instead uses a quick reference to a wedding veil. The narrator is probably waiting for him to propose.” The narrator takes his rant to heart and decides to add a pack of Marlboro Lights to her purchase. always smoking and watching sermons. she doesn’t intend to smoke. my Supernova. I think the two storylines are brought together seamlessly by narrator’s voice. “The brothers looked nearly identical with their leather skin and stooped postures.7 while there is good use of internal POV. One particular night. “It’s the end times. where the couple is in their backyard watching the meteor. because this couple is in love. the story also action proceeds when Brian and the narrator start making out. The piece ends with them folding up the blanket and going back inside. she stops in to buy wine and decides to ask one of the brothers what religion he is.” then goes into an apocalyptic rant as he rings the narrator up. smoking cigarettes and watching sermons on a small tv. The signs are everywhere. They don’t go any further because she doesn’t have her birth control. But there is a deeper layer.” It becomes clear very quickly what the story is really about. He says “Non-Denominational.” There is strong use of a model telling to describe their routine. Issue 4 Apocalyptic Liquor Store by Penni Jones is a plainspoken story in a domestic setting. First is the present moment. “He is my sun. imagery and powerful use of language. The unnamed narrator recalls two brothers that own the liquor store close to her apartment. except one had brown hair and one had gray hair. When she arrives at the store. I wax and wane at his will. I am his moon. She stops there and regularly notices that one of the brothers is always in the back. I like that there are two storylines in this piece.
Loser Birds by Joe Markman is a plainspoken story placed in a domestic setting. especially when he checks out the girl. in the end. but I think he does. The narrator’s drunkenness is very clear. at four in the morning. I drag my vision slowly from the place where her shorts end and her inner thigh continues. fueled by drugs and lack of sleep. along her abdomen to her eyes. I think. because they’ve outlasted the birds that stay up very late.” The piece uses sensory details well to heighten the moment.” It’s interesting that. There is also a noticeable change by the end. with a clear moment of decision when the narrator buys the cigarettes.” I like the narrator’s drunken state is shown. Anna. because it’s not directly stated that he takes his line of coke. I take a sip of my drink and the rum feels warm and pleasurable going down my throat and pooling into my stomach. to ache for her. They get stoned and celebrate the morning. I like the use of subtext and the way that the story smoothly moves from beginning to end.8 smoke made my mouth water as I realized it had been three days since my last cigarette. Thinking I should have gone to a different store. “She’s lying to my left on a lounge chair. by his pool. but the subtext is clear. enjoying the permission she has given me to look at her.” On the surface.” George provides lines of coke. The narrator and several friends are intoxicated at a friend’s house. it’s a story about getting fucked up. I heard his hacking smoker’s cough and my resolve strengthened. “before the last of the darkness vanishes into the morning light. probably romantic feelings. He’s actually willing to make a move on the girl. and the narrator provides weed. . The piece ends with the narrator kissing Anna. not just told. “It’s very late now. “I pause. The narrator has feelings for Anna.
of course. she’s out for her nightly walk and passes a flier for a lost cat. who daydreams about finding lost cats. a tutu around her hips. The story opens with Debra. possibly dead. one that she can’t make with children anymore because her daughter is dead. She notices a shrine to a dead young boy in the living room. She knows that this family has lost someone too. the cat in her arms. eventually finds a cat. the cats were most often gone for good. the grim reality. blonde or light brown hair. the cat is pictured with a little girl. The original intro to Heather is quick and is heightened with the use of backstory. but is drawn to the picture because in it. She decides to try anyway and gives the cat to the woman and her little girl. She studies the flier to memorize the cat’s features. one of the factors that probably leads .” Heather is Debra’s dead daughter. there is a clear sense of what the story is really about. “The idea amused Debra. and she accepts the invite for coffee because she feels relieved to know she’s not alone. Debra is divorced. but she knew. Debra has a strong connection to animals. Heather.9 Issue 5 Lost and Found by Lisa Borders is a realistic third person narrative.” Also. and goes back to the flier to get the provided phone number. Even her husband didn’t believe her. Debra was not a woman given to great displays of sentiment. and was at some point falsely accused of physically abusing her daughter. Debra continues her walk. a silver tabby named Tinkerbell Superstar. They realize it’s not the right cat. She could be Heather. “Pale eyes. One July night. She drives to the house. but take it anyway and invite Debra in for coffee. A big smile on her face. The story uses a close third person POV to further show Debra’s character. and even in her imagination she would only let whimsy go so far. but realizes while on the way that the cat isn’t the lost one. in a domestic setting.
The piece ends with Gerald and Corey pulling up outside in Corey’s truck. where he is in a Batman costume. “Mac didn’t like to think about how much Gerald had been over lately. The story is well done. He has always had feelings for her. This visit is well-timed because her current love interest Gerald isn’t around. he might have a shot with Corey afterall.” This scene shows their past interactions and that Mac has wanted Corey for a long time. There is a short scene of flashback in this story. He knew Gerald had no official claim to her – didn’t really want one. in a domestic setting. “Corey was seventeen. “Mac had been on the road then. Jillian drags Mac to the porch. the one she had given up. is visiting a lifelong female friend. The piece has good pacing. and I especially like how information is disclosed. and a great and important life still seemed possible. to when Mac and Corey are in a pool with Gerald and Johnny.10 to their divorce. Mac is upset by this. driving nuclear waste through Catasauqua. I think the present story is compelling. and Corey was three years away from having her first child. . and the use of backstory adds another layer. but eventually realizes that Jillian is calling him Badman because of the old photograph in the living room. Mac feels relieved by this and knows that if Jillian doesn’t think he’s a Badman. if not inevitable. and he lets her run to them. Mac. drinking and smoking pot. a trucker and mechanic.” Corey invites Mac in. Jillian points at Mac and continually calls him “Badman”. Corey. They started fooling around some until Corey’s little girl Jillian wakes up and begins crying. and he finally gets a chance to make his move. nor did he – but he didn’t like the feeling of sharing her. Mac was eighteen. Corey gets the child from her bedroom and when they return to the living room. and it comes full circle in the end. Badman by Rusty Barnes is a realistic third person story. which I think is more effective than just saying Mac loves her.
This tells me that the writer hasn’t taken the time to read the work with the close attention it deserves. even if not a full commitment. but we see a lot of stories and poems that have really obvious structural problems as well as spelling and grammatical errors. His job gives us many aspects of his characters. . instead of it having to be explained with backstory. Ontario”. stories about childhood that are cute and sentimental. The present story moment is driven by Mac’s inner conflict and desire. It’s crafted very well from beginning to end. Writing really is re-writing. stories that are obviously written to support a twist ending (not that all twist endings are bad. including his class and education.11 Pennsylvania to Ottawa. 2011) David Jones: What is the most common mistake you see from young writers? Katherine Kulpa: Sending a piece out before it’s ready. but the piece is driven by the fact that Mac wants more. Interview with Head Editor and Writer Katherine Kulpa (November 15. stories in which the protagonist’s identity and self-worth depend entirely upon her controlling vampire boyfriend. From this. why should I? DJ: What kinds of stories do you find cliché and uninteresting? KK: Stories where the protagonist “learns a lesson” that the reader can see coming on the first page. but if the story feels like it’s only there to support a punch line. I’m just not interested). the reader can tell that Mac is a trucker. If the writer doesn’t care. The friendship between the two is very clear.
the better I get at recognizing those mistakes in my own writing (not that I won't still make them!) I think writing makes me a better editor and editing makes me a better writer because I know how writing works. DJ: How long have you been editing? KK: I edited student publications in high school and college and later did copy editing at some local newspapers. My first professional magazine editing job was at Merlyn’s Pen. I was published in Newport Review in the late 1990s.12 DJ: How does your writing process influence your editing process. then volunteered to work on the magazine. it's probably going to be a no"--really resonated with all of us. and one comment that an editor made--"If I don't know what the story's about by the end of the first page. I know how difficult it is to get it right and how amazing it can be when you do. DJ: How do you finance the magazine? KK: We have applied for and been awarded grants from RISCA (RI State Council on the Arts). The more I read fiction submissions and see mistakes other writers make. . and how does your editing process influence your writing? KK: This topic just came up last night! Three of us were meeting to go over our finalist choices for the flash fiction contest before we sent them to the contest judge. Grants are the primary source of funding. and any income left over after paying the writers and contest judge is used to fund the magazine. followed by individual donations. We also sponsor writing contests. a magazine of writing by teens.
and that if I publish something online. just publishing one short story at a time.13 DJ: Do you have any other jobs? How do you balance editing the magazine with other responsibilities? KK: Yes. your work can disappear into the ether. even if the magazine stopped publishing. I can share it instantly with friends. Vestal Review. Online. Foundling Review. DJ: Name one piece that you’re especially proud of publishing. Pank. and I hope we would be able to continue to host the archive online. I work as a reference librarian and I teach creative writing at URI. Northville Review … I also look at Duotrope online to see where writers who submit to Newport Review have sent or published other work. We keep an archive of past work. and I like that you can read author interviews online to go along with the stories. and explain why. Metazen. Flashquake. . lots of coffee! DJ: What are your thoughts on the emergence of online magizines? KK: I love that I can access a magazine anytime and from anywhere. deComp. The downside is that if online publications go out of business. The Sun is a beautifully designed print journal. I like to see the range of work that’s out there. so it can be challenging to try to fit everything in … lots of late nights. DJ: What other magazines/online publications do you read? Why do you like them? KK: I like One Story—it has a unique format. I tend to read journals I’ve published in or that writers I know have published in: Monkeybicycle. The Pedestal. I try to subscribe to at least one print journal per year to support small publishing.
we also published two stories by X. and that was his first professional publication. established writer and work by an amazingly talented young writer just starting his career. and that was a thrill. We recently published poems by Marge Piercy. because the two examples I’m thinking of really show both sides of Newport Review. But in the same issue. We just have to pay for web hosting. so I have a special affinity for publishing new writers. DJ: How do your spread awareness about the mag? Do you do any marketing/promotion when you have extra time? . I think that will change with time. Navarro. (Yet!) DJ: What are the advantages and disadvantages to running an online-only magazine? KK: It requires a lot less space – we don’t have a physical office. than publishing a print journal.14 KK: Well. I started writing at a young age and really worked hard to get published for the first time. a new writer. So we had work by a tremendously respected. But there are still some funders and some writers who don’t consider web publications “real” magazines. I think. and having her send work to the magazine was just amazing. U. someone I’ve always admired. because she’s a poet and fiction writer I studied in college. but that really hasn’t happened. If I really loved something and all the other editors hated it. and every piece gets voted on by two or more editors. DJ: There are multiple editors on the magazine. all our editors work from home – and it’s less costly. I could probably override them. I’d like to split this into two. Do you ever bump heads when making editorial decisions? Or is everything ultimately your decision as head editor? KK: We’re pretty collegial. both in the same issue.
15 KK: We have a blog and Facebook page that we try to update. so we can send out announcements about readings or new issues. It will be worth the effort! . We’ve also advertised in Poets & Writers and other writing journals. and know that it can take a long time to publish your work. and we have an email list. Use that time to make your writing as good as it can be. DJ: What’s a piece of advice you can give to aspiring writers? KK: Have patience.
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