Are you a poet, author, photographer or artist? Seeking to put your work out into the world? Consider submitting an original piece to Tahoma West’s annual literary arts journal! Tahoma West is UW Tacoma’s own literary arts journal that accepts visual arts, poetry, fiction and non-fiction from students, staff, faculty and alumni. The submission deadline is March 30 — which gives plenty of time to perfect a piece you’ve been working on or start on a completely new creative project. Editor-in-chief Jordan Bowers discusses the submission process and the benefits of submitting to the Tahoma West’s literary journal.
Q: HOW MANY SUBMISSIONS DO YOU NORMALLY GET FOR THE JOURNAL?
A: The amount of submissions we get varies year to year. Last year we had over 200 submissions, which was the most submissions we have ever received — so far.
Q: IF YOUR PIECE IS ACCEPTED INTO THE JOURNAL, WHAT HAPPENS NEXT?
A: If a student’s work is accepted, the work is put into the journal. However, we maintain the rights to the work temporarily. All this means is that if the student wants to submit their work somewhere else, they have to wait until the journal is released. They will be notified if their work has been accepted or not before the launch party.
Q: IS THERE GOING TO BE AN EVENT WHERE STUDENTS ARE ABLE TO READ THEIR WORK FROM THE JOURNAL?
A: In late May, Tahoma West is hosting a launch party where those who have had their work accepted into the journal can bring friends, family, classmates, [and/or] anyone they want to celebrate the new issue release [with] and all the work that was put into it. At the launch party, people will be able to get copies of the new issue as well!
Q: IS THERE A CERTAIN TYPE OF CONTENT YOU ARE LOOKING FOR MOST?
A: We do not have a specific “this is what we want.” We are looking for original work that hasn’t been published elsewhere before. We are open to different types of work. We do not have a solid theme set for the issue.
Q: WHAT WOULD YOU SAY TO STUDENTS WHO MAY HAVE RESERVATIONS ABOUT SUBMITTING, SPECIFICALLY IF THEY ARE UNSURE IF THEIR WORK IS UP TO PAR?
A: For those who have not submitted work before, or not had work accepted before, SUBMIT ANYWAY! A piece of advice I got from a former writing professor is “For every one acceptance, there are a hundred rejections. But if you keep submitting, someone will accept your work.” Because of that advice, I’ve won a writing contest and been published three times, including in Tahoma West. Don’t be scared to submit your work. The worst that happens is [that] it doesn’t make it. But keep in mind we are a campus literary arts journal, not a national level journal. The process might seem scary, but it’s really not. A quote [from “The Golden Girls” character Dorothy] that I also love when I’m worried about possibly doing something is “In life, sometimes good things happen, sometimes bad things happen. But hon if you don’t try, then nothing happens.”