A writers’ gathering, “Third Annual Conversations and Connections” held on 11 April 2009, involved a trio of excellent literary journals — Barrelhouse, Potomac Review and Baltimore Review — with sponsorship by the Johns Hopkins University and Montgomery College. The venue was SAIS near Dupont Circle.
Ducking a hard rain shielded by a Munchkin umbrella made in China for Marimekko, I scooted across Mass. Ave to another office building that’s now part of the SAIS complex. Years ago, the Italian Cultural Institute occupied the first floor of this building, where films and lectures in Italian were followed by Prosecco and amusing canapes. The Italians have moved on, now hosting cultural events in their swank Embassy across Whitehaven Parkway from Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s residence.
Blackbird receives submissions from the global anglophone writing community. Other contemporary literary journals whose editors were also on the panel — Failbetter.com, JMWW, LOCUSPOINT . They publish a diverse pool of writers. A key point that there’s no need to distinguish between serious online lit journals and printed literary journals. The editors pointed out that online literary publications offer added value with audio and video files that enhance understanding of poems, stories or essays read aloud and published in the journal.
How to tell which online journals are worthy, someone asked. Read the masthead and take note of a stable publication schedule answered a panelist.