Pine Hills Review is the literary magazine of The College of Saint Rose and was established in 2014. “Named for the Pine Hills neighborhood in Albany, NY, Pine Hills Review publishes artful, honest, and compelling work of new and established writers, from fiction, nonfiction, and poetry to visual art, interviews, and experimental, cross-genre work.” They are currently open for their second themed issue: F*ck 2020. For more information, see my interview with Editor Daniel Nester with a link to submission guidelines below.
HOPKINSON: Tell me a little bit about Pine Hills Review.
NESTER: It’s the online literary journal of The College of Saint Rose. It was founded as part of the MFA creative writing program, which was discontinued, but we continued the publication, with undergraduate interns as well as a class I teach called Online Literary Journal Editing & Publishing.
HOPKINSON: How/why did the idea for the F*ck 2020 theme come to be?
NESTER: The class developed and decided on this theme just a couple weeks ago. Like everyone else, they’re frustrated about how the last year has gone. One student suggested the name, and the rest brought in the suggested details. Last year, we did a special feature with the theme of “Unicorns.” That turned out really well.
HOPKINSON: Who is your target reader audience?
NESTER: We don’t really have a key demographic per se, but I would say readers who are interested in innovative, adventurous, oddball writing.
HOPKINSON: What type of work are you looking for?
NESTER: You know, this is the kind of question I ask myself all the time. I’ve edited online literary journals for more than 20 years–Painted Bride Quarterly and Duckymag as part of a group conversation, to La Petite Zine and Unpleasant Event Schedule as one-person shows. And every time I open up a submission, I think what I am looking for is surprise. I think at first I was looking for a mirror of sorts, for work that I aspired to produce myself. That was when I was finding myself as a writer, and editing literary journals was an extension of that. Then, gradually, after I figured out what I was doing as a writer, my scope and interest as an editor widened out to looking for work that was not just surprising and reminded me of my own work, but work I felt had to get out into the world, and perhaps I could help doing that. These days, collaborating again with students and other editors, I feel like a publication can become its own conversation.
HOPKINSON: What do you wish you’d see submitted, but rarely comes in?
NESTER: I’d like to see work from even more BIPOC writers. I’d like to see more hybrid and experimental work.
HOPKINSON: What are some of your favorite lit mags/journals?
NESTER: So many! Off the top of my head, Cosmonauts Avenue, Assay: A Journal of Nonfiction Studies, Court Green, American Poetry Review, Denver Quarterly, Empty Mirror, Oversound, Barrelhouse, Hobart, The Offing, Bodega, PANK, Redivider, Painted Bride Quarterly, Voicemail Poems.
HOPKINSON: What is your favorite part of being on staff with Pine Hills Review?
NESTER: Working with student editors who are interested in literary culture and perhaps don’t know where or how to start, and seeing them discover that helping to run a literary journal and becoming a literary citizen is one way to accomplish that.
HOPKINSON: Where can we send submissions?
NESTER: email@example.com, but look at our guidelines first.
HOPKINSON: If someone has a question, how can they contact you?
NESTER: Same email address will work!
THEMED SUBMISSION DEADLINE: March 16, 2021
REGULAR SUBMISSIONS DEADLINE: April 30, 2021
SUBMISSION FEE: None
THEME: F*ck 2020
FORMS: Poetry, Nonfiction, Fiction, Hybrid, Interviews
ISSUE FREQUENCY: We publish new work every Wednesday and sometimes again on weekends.
AVERAGE RESPONSE TIME: 1-3 months
SUBMISSION METHOD: firstname.lastname@example.org, although we’d love to get back into Submittable and try out Duosomoa. Stay tuned.
SIMULTANEOUS SUBMISSIONS: Yes
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