“A journal that puts high stock in quality literature with some meat on its bones that you can really chew”

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Issue 17 – Spring/Summer 2017

Issue 17 features 104 pages of outstanding fiction and poetry, an essay on the unknown side of Jerome K. Jerome, and interviews with Vera Chok and Oscar Schwartz.

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Stack Awards and Silver Pens

For the third year in a row, we have a story shortlisted for the Stack Award for Best Original Fiction. ‘I Dreamt That You Died’ by Madeline Cross is a quiet story of a shared internal world, and of growing up and old alongside another. We’re delighted it resonated with the judges. You can read the Issue 17 story, in full, here.

The Stack Awards was founded three years ago to celebrate independent magazines and the 2017 ceremony takes place in London on Monday 20 November, where we’re up against stiff competition from the likes of Zoetrope, Somesuch Stories and 212. Fingers crossed.

In other awards news, we have three Issue 15 stories in this year’s Write Well Awards anthology from Silver Pen: ‘3 For 2’ by Paula Hunter, ‘All the Rest is Silence’ by Colette Coen and ‘Limehouse Blues’ by Jude Cook. The anthology is available on Amazon.

>> In the mood for more news, reviews and interviews? Head to the blog.

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Vaguely literary things we’ve been enjoying

Librivox

I’m a big fan of audiobooks – a great way to enjoy stories when it isn’t possible to pick up a book – and Librivox has a great catalogue. The works on offer are out of (US) copyright and are free to download, though they do advise you to check the copyright status in your own country before downloading. Anyone can volunteer to record (either solo, or as part of a collaboration), and there’s a friendly and knowledgeable bunch of people who help with things such as ‘proof listening’. I read for them a few years ago and had great fun collaborating on Pliny’s Natural History and some of James Boswell’s work. Reading aloud does make you consider the text very closely, I’ve found. — Elaine

People Reading

people reading-smlA blog I’ve been reading for ten years – indeed, since it started! – is People Reading. In each post, Sonya Worthy snaps a photo of someone on the street reading a book. She then interviews them briefly and finds out what they’re reading and why. It’s one of my favourite sites on the internet. I’ve discovered gems I would never otherwise have found, such as God’s Bits of Wood by Ousmane Sembène. People are always presented as readers first and foremost; she rarely delves into their private lives, unlike more modern sites such as Humans of New York. It’s lovely to see so many people out and about reading.

— Nat

FutureLearn

shakespeare-futurelearnFutureLearn works with unis and cultural institutions around the world to create courses on some pretty interesting topics – all for free – from the comfort of your laptop or smartphone. They’re super accessible and are a great way to intro yourself to or brush up on subjects when you’re short on time and juggling other projects. I’m currently enjoying their course on Hans Christian Andersen with the Uni of Southern Denmark. Next up on my list is their Shakespeare course run by my old uni lecturer Jonathan Bate.

— Sarah

>> Check out the VLTWBE archive here.