The IUPUI student literary magazine, “genesis,” published by the Department of English in the IU School of Liberal Arts at IUPUI, is celebrating its 45th anniversary with special recognition. The Indiana College Press Association (ICPA) has named them the Best Literary Magazine for the second straight year.
IUPUI students have been submitting their short stories, poetry, and artwork to the magazine since 1973, a year after it was founded by former faculty Rebecca Pitts (English) and Laurence Lampert (philosophy). While the shape and size of the magazine has changed over the years, IUPUI students continue to create high-quality content.
“You can tell that IUPUI students put their hearts into what they do, and it reflects in their work,” says Caroline Niepokoj, a student managing editor for the magazine. “The students don’t seem afraid to tackle big, serious concepts, and in ways that make you think about your own views. Getting your point across in a creative way is something all writers and artists try to do, and I think IUPUI students do a good job at this.”
Each year the ICPA celebrates the best in college journalism and creative writing with over 30 universities competing. The best literary magazine was determined by a point system with “genesis” finishing first place overall after being judge in categories that included best short story, best creative nonfiction, best short poem and best free verse poem, best hand drawn illustration, and best overall design. The “genesis” staff is made up of students who must take one creative writing class followed by a class focused on literary editing and publishing.
“Every semester, editors volunteer around 20-30 hours of their time reading and critiquing submissions, writing feedback letters, and designing and promoting the journal,” says Ashley Williams, another student managing editor. “Not only does winning the award prove that IUPUI has talented students, but it also proves that our volunteer work has paid off.”
“I hope [the student editors] feel enormous pride, as I do, in their accomplishment,” says Sarah Layden, English professor in the School of Liberal Arts at IUPUI and “genesis” faculty advisor. “They've spent time, energy and effort in order to create an issue each semester, which is no small undertaking when you consider their busy lives. While it's great to be recognized for a job well done, it's also worth noting that the students are developing skills they can use in any job: communication and negotiation are part of the editorial meetings, and making a magazine allows them to think critically and creatively at the same time.”
The literary magazine is currently celebrating its anniversary with a month-long art exhibit housed in the Campus Center Cultural Arts Gallery. The Spring 2018 issue will launch Thursday, April 19, with a release party in the Campus Center Theater Level at 1:30 p.m. The release party will feature snacks and a student reading of published work.