Sugar Rascals is an online, international, Canada-based teen literary magazine featuring prose, poetry, and visual art in their bi-annual issues. You can read their inaugural issue here. Teens ages 13 – 19 are encouraged to submit and to apply for their volunteer staff positions. Working on a lit mag is great experience for anyone looking to go into writing, poetry, visual art, teaching, editing, etc. and helps writers/artists make connections with a larger writing community.
I wondered how and why this lit mag came to be, so I asked Sugar Rascals co-founder and editor Farah Ghafoor a few questions to find out. See my interview with Ghafoor and links to their volunteer staff application info and to their submission guidelines below.
HOPKINSON: Tell me a little bit about Sugar Rascals.
GHAFOOR: Sugar Rascals is an international literary magazine dedicated to work of talented, blossoming teenagers. We want our contributors to expose their voices to the world, and to grow above all else. We want, as readers and writers, to explore the parts of ourselves that we are ashamed or afraid of. We want you to be honest, or perhaps more importantly, accept yourself for the unique, courageous being you are. The power of words and art does unfathomable things to the human spirit, so show us. Take a chance. Submit.
HOPKINSON: How/why was Sugar Rascals originally started?
GHAFOOR: Sugar Rascals was founded several months after I began submitting to literary magazines. As my list of publications grew, so did my confidence in my writing, and although one doesn't to be published in order to be validated as a poet, it is always a great encouragement to keep writing. This is especially true for teens because we are constantly pushed to change or hide parts of ourselves for parents, friends and classmates, and therefore are insecure about our true selves. This caused me to ask myself: What if I could make writers feel the way I do about my writing? What if I could give them the motivation to accept and love who they are? Sugar Rascals was the result of these questions and was born the following spring in collaboration with my co-founder and friends.
HOPKINSON: What type of work are you looking for?
GHAFOOR: We're looking for work that beats on the page like a little heart, blood and all. Work that echoes in our heads for days, weeks, even months. We are looking for work that follows its own path beside the garden of imagery and under the sky of flow. Summers, we release themed issues, and winters, they aren't themed. Remember that we don't support hateful writing of any kind, so please look at your work with a critical, just eye before submitting.
Volunteer staff applications are open as well for those who desire to have a larger role at Sugar Rascals. We are looking for a Social Media Manager, Blog Editor, Associate Sweet Talk Interviewer, Art Contributors and Blog Contributors, and application guidelines can be found here: http://sugarrascals.wixsite.com/home/staff-applications. We'd love for you to be part of the team, so apply before October 20th!
HOPKINSON: What are some of your favorite lit mags/journals?
GHAFOOR: My favourite magazines at the moment are Jellyfish Magazine, Diagram, Sundog Lit, Ostrich Magazine, Sixth Finch, Thrush, Hermeneutic Chaos, Nashville Review, and Narrative. As for those that focus on young people, I love to read Sprouts, Canvas and Phosphene.