Friends, fellow writers, I beg your forgiveness. I know you’ve wondered and even asked – what is happening with the Zine submissions??
The delay is entirely my fault. Since my last update, back in July, I’ve had a baby, and despite my best intentions, I’ve been a bit behind in my work ever since. But the Zine is such an exciting project for all of us here at Shut Up & Write!, I’m coming out of maternity leave for it.
Ok, hard part done, let’s get to the good stuff.
Before we get to the list of finalists, I wanted to take a moment and share a few insider details about our process. As this is our first Zine, what we found was, we didn’t really know what takes to produce a Zine. We had done our research and we had some general ideas, but nothing solidifies an idea into a working concept quite like experience.
To start, we didn’t really have any idea how many people might submit. After zine submissions had closed, we immediately realized we needed more readers, more judges, though it would be some weeks before we realized what we actually needed was, in fact, more time.
Primarily because while we understood we would ultimately need to determine which writings would be published in the Zine, the process of judging was actually much more difficult than we anticipated. Since we specifically kept the format and genres open ended, how does one compare between a poem and an essay?
Our judges dedicated over fifteen weeks to reading zine submissions. We asked them to provide detailed feedback and critique on each piece, which we then sorted through and debated, comparing and contrasting the merits of witty dialogue vs. a strong character arc; we considered word choice and pace; whether it mattered if a great first sentence beat out just the right ending.
In the end, we simply went with our original concept and selected the zine submissions that moved us the most within each format. We picked the pieces that made us laugh, the ones that made us think and question, the ones we rallied behind, cheering through every word.
So, without further ado, our writers for the Shut Up & Write! Zine 2017 are:
We owe a huge thank you to our judges, and to all of our writers who submitted their work, thank you, thank you, thank you. You inspired us, you showed us what could be.
Now we will embark on the next phase, namely placing the final submissions together to form a cohesive journey for our readers. Then we’ll designing the cover and send it off to be printed. I expect this part will take us a couple months.
Oh and keep an eye out for details on our Zine Reading Party, to be held in San Francisco in early 2018. We hope you can join us as we celebrate our writers and our first publication.