Another Lit Magazine Closes Its doors

Last night, the editors/founds of [PANK] shared some sad news. The magazine will close at the end of the year. Here is the official statement shared on social media:

Dear friends and family,

Please accept this brief note as PANK’s formal notification of resignation, effective as of the end of this calendar year, 2015. We’ll publish one last print issue and two final online issues of PANK Magazine; look for those in the months ahead. We are immeasurably proud of our publications and have boundless gratitude for all the staff, contributors, and each and every reader who has labored alongside us over the last decade. It’s been an immensely gratifying ride. PANK loves you.

Yours sincerely
M. Bartley Seigel, Roxane Gay, & Co.

Over the last several years, [PANK] has been one of the edgier and influential literary journals in the country, whose following grew from year to year. It should also be noted that when the magazine started, Roxane Gay did her best to feature several female voices, which is important to note, since the literary world is still very much dominated by men, even in 2015.

I’ve had the pleasure of writing book reviews for [PANK] over the last five years or so, and I’ll always be grateful for that opportunity, and for the reviews that they did of my first two poetry collections. RIP, [PANK]. Oh, and before any assumptions are made regarding funding cuts or someone dying, here is what Seigel said in response to the comments on Facebook:

This outpouring of support is humbling. Thank you. But three points: 1. No one died, no one yanked our funding, there’s no scandal, we just decided we were ready to move on to other things. 2. Who knows, maybe PANK will be back one day, new, better. 3. Translate some of this energy into going out and supporting the wonderful litmags that are still at it and will still be at it when PANK closes its doors. -M. Bartley Seigel

Let’s hope that the magazine does return even new and improved. In the meantime, go read it!

Some Useful Links Regarding Lit Mags


The process of submitting your writing to literary journals can be utterly daunting. One of the most popular databases, Duotrope, now charges a fee for its services, and unless you know what you’re looking for, it won’t yield much for a basic search. Another well-known resource, Poets & Writers magazine, has a classifieds section available online and in the back of the magazine. Some of my publishing credits came from resources I found in that classifieds section. However, that section can be hit or miss, and lately, it features more ads for conferences and grants than it does for literary magazines.

Recently, I started submitting new work to various magazines, and I’ve discovered two wonderful resources. One of the resources is called The Review Review, a website which publishes reviews of various magazines, thus providing information to writers about what the mags are looking for and the type of creative work they typically publish. Furthermore, the website includes a database of literary journals, and I’ve been mining the database every few days for new publishing opportunities. Check out the site and bookmark it. New reviews are published frequently, and new magazines are added to the database.

I also discovered a website created by Jeffrey Bahr, a poet whose work has been published in some of the most prestigious literary journals in the country, such as Iowa Review, Indiana Review, and Black Warrior Review. Basically, Bahr has a list of lit. mags on his website and provides short blurbs about their submission process. He rates them  in terms of difficulty, and Poetry magazine and The New Yorker top the list.  Keep in mind that just about every single publication on his list is fairly well-known, and even the journals at the bottom of the list, such as Main Street Rag, Tar River Poetry Review, and Spillway, have low acceptance rates. (Both Main Street Rag and Spillway rejected my work multiple times before I finally got an acceptance recently in each of those mags). But the list is worth checking out, especially for mid-level writers looking to break into some of the more well-known magazines.

Happy hunting!


Some Fall Publishing Credits

It’s been a fairly productive fall for me in terms of publishing credits, so I thought I’d share some of the news.

Two of my poems, “Mr. Dobson” and “After Working Hours,” appeared in the print and online fall issue of Boston Literary Magazine. They can be read here.

Three of my poems, “At 18,” “Country Girl,” and “Road Fears,” appeared in the November issue of Foliate Oak Literary Magazine, which is run out of the University of Arkansas-Monticello. The poems can be read here.

Finally, three of my poems were published in the fall issue of Red Rock Review, based out of the College of Southern Nevada. The poems only appear in print. I’m especially happy to be part of that issue because there’s a lot of wonderful work in there, including an elegy about poet Ruth Stone, written by Dorraine Laux, winner of Guggenheim Fellowships and NEA fellowships.

I’m hoping to be just a productive and fortunate heading into the winter months and new year.