I’ve been keeping a secret from the followers of this blog. I’m not quite sure why I haven’t written about it before. Nonetheless, here it is.
I started a literary magazine designed to celebrate the creativity and wisdom in every woman. It’s called Minerva Rising. The idea came to me in January while I was planning my goals for the year. One of my goals was to get my short stories into a literary goal. I went through the Literary Journal and Magazine database on Poets and Writers, but most of the journals seemed too experimental or academic for my stories. None of them focused on the everyday life of women. I began to imagine a literary journal that would publish the types of stories women share with one another – kind of like a girl’s night out in print.
Girl’s night out is so important because it’s a time when women get together to share the stories of their lives. Sure there’s lots of wine and martinis, but there is also a strong sense of camaraderie. Women are empowered through the exchange of ideas and the sharing of experiences. There’s a communal understanding of the various roles we play and the sacrifices we make. We find validation and acceptance.
Toni Morrison says:
“If there’s a book that you want to read, but it hasn’t been written yet, then you must write it.”
So I decided to start the journal I wanted to read.
Now this isn’t the first time I’ve thought of starting a magazine. Nine years ago, I bought the book Starting & Running a Successful Newsletter or Magazine by Cheryl Woodard.
But I actually never read it. I simply came up with a theme for the first issue and wrote the letter from the editor. I asked a friend to join the effort, but it never got much further than my letter and an unfinished article of friendship.
But this time I spent a fair amount of time thinking about the magazine’s focus. I knew if the foundation was strong enough, it would develop the momentum and strength to stand on it’s own. I combined my life long mission of empowering women with my love of literature and art. And as you know from “Support Your Local Independent Bookstore”, I’m a sucker for anything in print, so I knew the journal would have to be in print.
I shared the idea with three women whose talents and knowledge seemed to be just what a project like this needed. Each one of them loved the idea and wanted to be a part of it. Together we began to build Minerva Rising.
It’s amazing what it has grown into in just six short months. We have not only come up with our name, logo and mission, but we’ve also accepted sixteen pieces of literature and poetry from our first round of submissions. Our first issue will be in print the first week in September.
I share all of this, in part, to indirectly explain my somewhat sporadic posts the last few months. Most of my time has been spent on getting Minerva Rising up and running. As a way to get people excited about the project, we started a literary blog called The Keeping Room. It’s a casual forum where we share stories related to the current them of the journal. My Associate Editor, Dulcie Witman and I share writing responsibility for the blog. There’s a new post every Monday. Check it out. This week I write about painting and perfectionism.
Now that the secret is out, take a look at our website. Let me know what you think.
I’ll be sure to keep you in the loop going forward.