Wednesday, 11 March 2009


Southword 15 is out now and it contains the winning and shortlisted stories I chose for the 2008 Seán Ó Faoláin Short Story Prize. So if you want to see what type of story made it to the top ten, now's your chance.

As well as a host of great stories by Julia Van Middlesworth, Colm Keegan, Anna May Mangan and others, there is poetry from Gerry Murphy, Ian Wild, Vona Groarke, Susan Connolly, Aideen Henry and more.

Billy Ramsell writes a great review and in this issue he focuses on sensuality in collections by Richard Tillinghast and Frank Golden.

I'm sorry to see that this is the last print edition of Southword. The managing editor, Patrick Cotter, explains in his Foreword that they have decided to make Southword an online journal from the next issue, with no compromise on their 'rigorous editorial standards'. He explains it all in the text but, basically, in these downturny times, it's a financial decision. But, you know, one benefit will be that they will be able to feature more work in an online position. (Though no more lolling in the bath with the journal for me - one of my fave activities whenever I get a new lit mag. Sigh.)

Submissions are being accepted for Southword 16 (poetry and fiction) and 17 (poetry only) until the 15th of March. You have a few days to get your best work in to them!

You can buy Southword 15 online here for €8 including P&P. Bargain.


Uiscebot said...

I'm reading it now - you put together some collection WRW. It's a real ego trip to be in there! Benamin Artody's story is brilliant, and White - jaysus. Daddy dead is much better on the page too.


Hi C
Yes, Benjamin's story is brilliantly done. And 'White' is Cathy's 1st published story - amazing. I wonder if she is American? I was sure soemone from the USA had written it but she lives in Bray!
I'm proud of all the stories, I must say. Delighted that such good stuff was submitted. It makes the job so easy.

Totalfeckineejit said...

Nice one Nuala.I hadn't come across Southword before but now I've found it I have to say that it is a real pity that it's going online.It physically looked like a really beautiful high quality magazine.Will have to try and buy the back issues bit by bit.There is NO substitute for the REAL article.Magazines(good ones) always have an added dimension greater than the sum of their parts
and there is no greater pleasure than a stack of them on your bookshelf.Shame.

PJ Nolan said...

Cool. looking forward to the read.


It is a lovely production, always.
The fact that you weren't aware of it as an Irish lit mag just proves a point in Pat's editorial: the large chainstores have put small publishers out of busines by not stocking their books and mags. It's v hard to get lit mags into shops and v hard to market them. Online, it seems, is the way to go.

Emerging Writer said...

Looking forward to reading it...but the going online only I think is an appalling decision. I've sent stuff in for consideration. If I'd known it was going online, frankly I wouldn't have. I think I'll have to withdraw. What does anyone else think?

Liz said...

I got Southword in Books Upstairs last summer - pity about the print magazine going - just ordered it, so handy/tempting with paypal...: )I've never been able to submit to them though because of the SAE requirement and those international reply coupons don't exist here... wonder will they change that policy now that it is online?
Congrats on the issue, Nuala.
Looking forward to the read.


EW - I empathise. I think there is a definite feeling of print mag, good; online mag, bad. BUT, only because some online mags are truly bad.

Southword has always had v high standards and it will still be a quality product, I'm sure of that. They employ separate, paid editors for poetry and fiction, each year. Not many mags do that.

Also, one story I had in Southword a few years ago was read by an agent who contacted me, so it is well though of among the literati.

Another advantage of online, too, is WAY more readers. I'd say leave your poems with them and see how you go?


Liz - why not email Munster Lit and ask them/suggest it? It would seem to make total sense that they would accept online subs in the future, now that they will be online.

Liz said...

Thanks, Nuala - will send them an enquiry.

Re: online vs print - there are definitely some very good online mags out there too - (Diagram, Noö, NthPosition, Quarrtsilini etc) and the exposure to more readers, as you say, Nuala, is a plus...some online mags do a yearly anthology of the best work -this idea can work really well too.

Tania Hershman said...

I just ordered my copy, mainly because after hearing Julia read Daddy Dead, it is still resonating with me, I have to read it again. Online is definitely not a terrible thing - but I did the lit-mag-in-bath thing today, (Columbia journal, quite fabulous), and that is such a joy! You could take your laptop in with you... not that I'm saying I've done that, or that I would, or...or...

John Holten said...

Have to agree with EW. I think it's a shame that there's only really now The Stinging Fly and Dublin Review. With a loss of outlets means more work for the magazine for sure, but many younger mags and zines have used the web to sell their wares. Look at the fate of west47 magazine - anyone published by them from below the last issue have no trace whatsoever of their 'published' work, the website being taken down.


Hi John and welcome,
That is a shame re west 47 and it's true - I went looking for old issues (I'm judging their prize this year) and couldn't find them!
I hope Southword archives its back issues, as many online zines do.

Annamay said...

Dear Nuala,

Happy St Patrick's Day x
I have just got my copy of Southword 15 in the post, and was so eager to read Daddy Dead that I managed to do so and walk the dog at the same time ! Julia is an AWESOME writer and I am honoured to be in her company and that of so many other exciting writers and poets. Thank you again for your part in that,

Anna May


And they are in awesome company with you, Ms Mangan. The Red Dress is a stunning story - well done!! N x

Merc said...

I received my copy today. Thanks for the tip.


Merc - I'm just delighted for Southword that more people are buying it. Good for you. I hope you enjoy it.