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Time and space and the literary journal

Time and spaceYesterday I read the most scintillating post over at Nieman Journalism Lab: ‘Following up on the need for follow-up‘. It was the kind of piece you read and wish you’d written, and can be summarised thusly: we need to move beyond our news cycles – ‘the daily paper, the nightly newscast, the monthly magazine’ – because our reality is no longer confined by them. Here’s Megan Garber (author of the post) quoting Matt Thompson (from NPR and Snarkmarket):

Journalism can now exist outside of time. The only reason we’re constrained to promoting news on a minutely, hourly, daily or weekly basis is because we’ve inherited that notion from media that really do operate in fixed time cycles.

And this got me, an associate editor at a literary journal, pondering the relativity of journalism and literary journals and their relationship to time, information and identity.

At one point in time, long ago, say the 1970s, we had quarterly journals. No electronic publishing, no blogs and far fewer submissions. Mr Ted Genoways, editor of the Virginia Quarterly Review, estimated: ‘Back in the 1930s, magazines like the Yale Review or VQR saw maybe 500 submissions in a year; today, we receive more like 15,000.’

Read the rest of the piece over at Meanland.

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