I thought it would be good to write about some publications that I’ve been drawing on for ideas and inspiration while working on LEFT. So this is me doing that.
Hue & Cry
Hue & Cry is my favourite New Zealand journal. Chloe Lane publishes consistently exciting work, but more important for the purposes of this post is the way that everything fits together. The individual works in each issue fit together like jigsaw pieces and the issues are bricks that form the most comfortable house. Everything feels so complete. The minimalist design by The International Office perfectly encompasses the Hue & Cry aesthetic.
Also, in a country dominated by a couple of big journals, Hue & Cry offers a space where less established and more unusual writers can reach a wide audience. This is definitely something I want to emulate with LEFT
Artifice’s desire for work that is ‘aware of its own artifice’ is one that I share. I could easily steal that tagline and staple it onto LEFT and I think I would receive exactly the type of submissions I’m looking for.
With such loose submission guidelines one might expect Artifice to be messy, but nothing could be further from the truth. This magazine is not a home of meaningless experimentation. Their editors’ eyes are sharp. Each issue is a controlled explosion which uncovers the most shiniest crystals.
One of my favourite things about Artifice is their wishlist, a work of art in its own right.
The Newer York
The Newer York is not a controlled explosion. The Newer York is a firework factory on fire. Reading one of their books is a truly visual experience. I want LEFT to similar experience but with a more focused vision.
TNY pushes the idea that anything can be literature/everything is literature which I wholeheartedly believe in. But I think their focus on new forms causes them to miss out on some work that is doing interesting and new things but takes a more traditional form. I want to find a balance of these two things with LEFT.
Illuminati Girl Gang
'IGG is a zine dedicated to showcasing female perspectives in art and literature.' I don't see how anyone could hate on that mission statement. I salute Gabby for undertaking this project and for the quality work she publishes.
The thing about Illuminati Girl Gang that I will be drawing on the most is the way that it brings an internet aesthetic into the print medium. The majority of the art (in any form) that excites me is found online. One of my main goals for LEFT is to create that same sort of excitement around a physical artifact.
I’m also really impressed by the way Gabby has gotten so much coverage for the zine. This is something that I think will be a struggle for me to achieve with LEFT, especially since I don’t have such a strong mission statement.
While I admire and support all of these publications, I also view them as the competition. I will be measuring my success against theirs and trying to outdo them in terms of quality (which is subjective) and reach (which is more easily measured). These publications are important to me and I want LEFT to be important to people too.