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Be Generous & Wise with Jónína Kirton of Turtle Island Responds

Room Magazine’s Turtle Island Responds, is creating an online library of lived experience, offered in verse.


Share Intimacy with Doyali Islam of Arc Poetry Magazine

In this episode of Lit Mag Love: A podcast for creative writers who want to publish, host Rachel Thompson interviews Doyali Islam from Arc magazine. Their conversation covers offering an emotional truth and creating some kind of intimacy with the readers. They also discuss how poets and readers of poetry feel a sense of belonging through poem. Doyali is someone who recites her favourite poems to keep herself company as she moves invisibly about the city. If you spot her in her cat-print...


Learn from Others with Alexandria Petrassi of So to Speak Journal

In this episode of the Lit Mag Love Podcast, host Rachel Thompson talks with Alexandria Petrassi from So to Speak journal. Their discussion covers how the “canonical” writer has changed. “When I started reading poetry, I didn’t read anybody living,” says Alexandria, adding “The fantastic part about this moment, is who people are reading now and who people will remember are so much different now. The quality of the voices, speaking their own truths, their experiences moving through the...


Invite Readers In with Sakina Fakhri and Diana McClure of Azure magazine

In this episode of the Lit Mag Love Podcast, host Rachel Thompson talks with Sakina Fakhri and Diana McClure, founders of Azure magazine. Azure accepts literary fiction, creative non-fiction, excerpts, screenplays, stageplays, fragments, meanderings, philosophy and poetry, in submissions of up to 50 pages. They don’t charge fees for submissions, and here’s something interesting—if your submission is part of a novel-length work or feature-length screenplay, there exists the possibility of...


Team Up with Kaitlyn Andrews-Rice and Marianne Chan of Split Lip

We talk about how their collaboration works and extends to the writers who submit to the journal. We cover jealousy in art and how the poems and stories they publish need to be ready for their solo appearance. We also get pretty specific about the lengths of work in both flash and longer fiction. And the interview turns even more collaborative when they turn the mic on me to discuss our writing practices—they have lots to say about what has worked and what hasn’t when it comes to writing...


Minisode: What do editors want?

While there isn’t a new editor interview for the Lit Mag Love podcast this week, I thought I would take this moment to recap what we learned from editors in some past episodes and try to answer that proverbial question: What do editors want?


Flash and Fire with Rebecca Salazar of Plenitude

In this episode, Rachel Thompson interviews Rebecca Salazar, poetry editor with Plenitude magazine, a publication that aims to promote the growth and development of LGBTTQI literature. We talk about how she’s turning to her peers for mentoring in light of the abusive culture of mentoring unearthed in CanLit (Canadian Literature) in the past few years, how two-spirited writers in Canada are having a sort of coming into one's own, and there's this community that's basically springing out of...


Take Control of Your Narrative with Robin Richardson of Minola Review

In this episode, Rachel Thompson talks with Robin Richardson, founder of the Minola Review. She discusses how she overcame early critiques of her writing by men—critiques she internalized. And they talk about getting men to listen. Minola Review is named after the protagonist in The Taming of the Shrew after all. One theme of their conversation is taking control of your narrative. "[Negative] voices like that aren't allowed in my life anymore and they were before and it has something to do...


Know You’re in a Conversation with Lilly Dancyger of Narratively

In this episode, Rachel Thompson talks with Lilly Dancyger of Narratively, about the responsibility of editors to elevate voices left out the conversation, why you should know what conversations have already been had about the subjects of your writing, her experiences with memoir writing both deep and shallow with ideas on how to find the deep stories that resonate with readers and editors. Lilly Dancyger's essays and journalism on sex, politics, and culture have appeared in Rolling Stone,...


Delight in Language with Maya Marshall of [PANK]

In this episode, Rachel talks with Maya Marshall, a self-described demanding and productive writer and editor with [PANK] magazine—yes, the magazine founded by Roxane Gay. Among much glorious and affirming advice she shares for writers, she is clearly someone who delights in language and craft, and cheers this enchantment—a word that comes up often in our interview—when she sees it in her submission inbox. They talk about mentoring and modelling, and about the risque words she does not want...


Take Notice with Donna Talarico of Hippocampus

“I’ve just become better at noticing those little mechanical things,” says the guest for this episode, Donna Talarico, the founder and publisher of Hippocampus Magazine. Hippocampus makes memorable creative nonfiction. It is an online journal, a conference, and most recently a publishing house. Hippocampus Magazine is an exclusively online publication set out to entertain, educate and engage writers and readers of creative nonfiction. Each issue features memoir excerpts, personal essays,...


Pick Pleasure over Ambition with Wendy Lesser from The Threepenny Review

In this episode, we break outside the Lit Mag Love bubble we’ve been in—both in terms of region, The Threepenny Review is an established American lit mag, but also in terms of the approach to writers—a well-lauded, establishment figure in US literary scene, she says she can always tell when a writer has her or his own voice and that’s the thing they need to bring when they submit to the review. Also in the approach to being a gatekeeper, while she has published work that came from “under the...


Be Luminescent with Amanda Leduc of Little Fiction/Big Truths

Of course, it is easier to say don’t give up than to do it, as my guest for this episode, Amanda Leduc admits. She’s the nonfiction Little Fiction: Big Truths, so, of course, we continue the trend from the last several episodes of Lit Mag Love and talk about truth-telling in creative nonfiction. Amanda is a writer with Cerebral Palsy, who grew up with scant examples of disability in literature. We talk about how the literary culture in general in North America, but in Canada particularly,...


Lift Up Women’s Stories with Sierra Skye Gemma, Contest Coordinator at Room

advice for writers of creative nonfiction (CNF) and for writers who are trying to decide if a piece is suitable to enter contests. More About Sierra Skye Gemma Sierra Skye Gemma On Publishing in Lit Mags (Rowan McCandless, Room) “The Wrong Way” (PDF of Sierra's National Magazine Award-winning story from The New Quarterly) Finding a Voice in Creative Non-fiction, with Sierra Skye Gemma (Plenitude) Background on Sexual-Harassment in CanLit CanLit Has a Sexual-Harassment Problem (Zoe Whittall,...


Remember Write Rhymes with Fight with Eufemia Fantetti of Humber Literary Review

“Write rhymes with fight for a reason. We’re not all meant to be at the frontline...I’m way more comfortable sitting down and trying to figure out how to write back against something that I really dislike.” Let’s let these words from Eufemia Fantetti, bridge the connection between what has been a theme in the past few LML episodes around the abuse of mentors and #MeToo in Canadian Literary circles, and learning how to write difficult stories in a writing community with mentors who support...


Understand Who You Are with Alicia Elliott of The Fiddlehead

“I think that when a writer doesn’t have a good understanding of who they are and what their beliefs are...they are going to necessarily lack the conviction in their writing to go daring places, and ask daring questions.” —Alicia Elliott Alicia Elliott is a Tuscarora writer and the new Creative Non-Fiction editor at The Fiddlehead magazine. She is also someone both daring in her writing, and solid in her beliefs. (Links to her essays appear below, or check out her Twitter feed.) She talks to...


Stick With Writers with Shazia Hafiz Ramji from PRISM

As always this episode truly takes you behind the scenes of a literary journal—in this case, it’s a University-based journal in the centre of controversy. (Below, we link to articles that will provide some background, though you don’t need to know all the minutiae of this story to listen to the episode.) We also talk about Shazia’s really laudable efforts to make sure underrepresented writers are welcome with open arms into the pages of PRISM, and my sixth-grade self jumped in glee when she...


Turn Your Writing Outward with Carleigh Baker of Joyland Vancouver

Rachel interviews Carleigh Baker, an editor with Joyland, who talks about the difference between her first and future books, “You can only gaze at your navel for so long. If that’s what you needed to heal, great, but I’m really looking forward to turning my gaze outward.” And about the positive changes and communities that have grown out of dark times in CanLit: “I’m hopeful because I see a lot of women and some men speak up about sexual assault.” Carleigh Baker is a Cree-Métis/ Icelandic...


Write When Language Fails with Janice Lee of Entropy

ENTROPY is a website featuring literary and related non-literary content. They seek to create a space where writers can engage with other writers, can participate in a literary community, and where thinkers can collaborate and share both literary and non-literary ideas. Their site covers topics from video games, graphic novels, interactive literature, science fiction, fantasy, music, film, art, and other topics in addition to literary reviews, interviews, conversations, and articles on...


Let Love Lead You with Derek Askey of The Sun Magazine

The Sun is an independent, ad-free magazine that for more than forty years has used words and photographs to evoke the splendour and heartache of being human. Each monthly issue features personal essays, short stories, interviews, poetry, and photographs that explore the challenges we face and the moments when we rise to meet them. Writing from The Sun has won the Pushcart Prize and been selected for numerous anthologies, including Best American Short Stories and Best American Essays. About...