doors

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Dear reader,

I live in Texas now, where you can just leave your windows open year-round and apartments come with sliding doors and balconies. When I first moved here, I didn’t know anyone, and one of my roommates––strangers the apartment complex had paired with me––never locked our front door when she went out. She didn’t lock it when she came home, either, I’m guessing because she assumed at least one other person was home. We got along well but this habit made me nervous. It led me to go into the living room and check the lock several times a day. I feared my stuff being stolen. At that time it felt like all I had in Texas was my stuff; in particular, my laptop, which I’d only bought and transferred years of writing onto a month earlier.

This week marks three years in Texas. I’ve since lived with other (wonderful and kickass and secure!) people, but still I spent much of the last year checking those fucking locks again. And the dials on the stove. And my inbox. My memories; the headlights on my car; the wording of any and all sent messages; my own thoughts, even, as if any of these things might be its own door I’d forgotten to lock, as if someone who wasn’t me––or who I aspired to be––might get in and fuck with what had been left inside. A couple times I ran late to work because I couldn’t remember if I’d turned the key left or right and verifying that made me miss my bus. I was in my last year of graduate school, after which my life would hinge wide open, and all I could think about was enclosure.

2016 has been a hard year. Let’s kick those doors down and allow the air in.

With love,
Heather

Pushcart Prize Nominations for 2016

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Broads, this has been an amazing year for us. Between our science fiction issue, sexy robot web series, and forthcoming winter issue, we’ve had the delight of adding heaps of uniquely dazzling voices, both fresh and established, to the pages of our journal.

As always, selecting just six works to nominate for the Pushcart Prize was a difficult process. In the end, though, we couldn’t pass up the opportunity to throw some sunshine on the following authors:

Kate Jonuska, “Desire Designed,” Sexy Robot Web Special 3.0

Julia Dixon Evans, “Autoclave,” Sexy Robot Web Special 4.0

Diana Clark, “Singed,” Science Fiction and Speculative Issue

Libba Hockley, “Weaning,” forthcoming Winter 2015

Hillary Katz, “After Injury,” and “Because You Want a Love Poem,” forthcoming Winter 2015

 

Thanks for another great year of reading women and nonbinary writers! To check out these pieces and more, point yo’self this way.

Call for Submissions, Winter Issue

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Hey everyone!

We’re still looking for submissions to our Winter 2014 issue. No theme this time, so you can send whatever you want. Email us your best fiction, creative nonfiction, poems, artwork or photography to broadzine [at] gmail [dot] com by October 31. Yeah, Halloween. Send us your stuff, then go celebrate your go-getting ambition by going to a party/drinking spooky cocktails/eating all the candy you can.

Love,
Heather

“Mothers” is out!

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Check out our first themed issue over on the Issues page!  We’ve got wonderful, varied work by  Danielle Boodoo-Fortuné, Joanna Cattonar, Kirstin Ruth Bratt, Alexis Rhone Fancher, Chanel Brenner, Katie DePasquale, Tracy Foy, Emily Jaeger, Noorulain Noor, Cate Blum, Monica Wright, Kathy Rudin, Naima Woods, Laura Jent, Amy Neill Bebergal, Megan Mealor, Susan Martell Huebner, Kim Heikkila, Lori Zimmermann, Athina Pappa, Kaylen Mallard, Julie Howd, Laura Sweeney, Sophia E. Terazawa, Kristen Rouisse, Elizabeth Savage, and Sandra Fees.

Thank you to all our contributors, and to all those who submitted!

Becoming More Inclusive in 2014

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Morning, everyone.

It’s a new year now, and for 2014 Broad! has resolved to be more actively supportive of those who are trans* or otherwise outside the gender binary. When I founded the journal, for lack of a more suitable phrase, I resorted to the language “female-bodied and/or female-identified” to mean that we would publish cis women, trans women, trans men and individuals outside the binary (essentially, anyone who wasn’t a cis man).  However, as our readership––and submitter pool––has grown and diversified, it’s become clear that this terminology isn’t as applicable, fair, or accurate as it needs to be.  Though I had intended Broad! to be a space where non-binary-identified individuals could feel comfortable, it’s come to my attention recently (thanks, T.R.!) that, well, it isn’t.  Not to the extent it should be.  And for that, I am sorry.

I’d like to ask you for feedback on your experiences with Broad!, your suggestions as to how we can become more inclusive in 2014, and any other ideas you might have to throw our way.

This journal is meant to promote and support the work of people whose genders have been (and still are) marginalized, particularly in the publishing world, where their work is either neglected by the mainstream culture––unpublished, unregarded––or demarcated as Other.  We publish people who are not cis men.  Limiting publication to individuals who don’t identify a certain way, however, has its own logistical issues; largely, that a submitter’s gender is often assumed based on the name heading their manuscript.

Since Broad!’s inception, we have received several submissions from cis male authors, all people who either hadn’t read our guidelines closely enough or didn’t care about adhering to them.  In these cases, I used to click on the link the submitter included to his website/Facebook in order to to confirm that he was cis (and thereby exclude his work from our submission pool).  This is not something I am proud of.  While, each time, it turned out that the authors were cis male-identified and blanket-submitting their pieces across publications, that’s not the point: that doesn’t resolve the problem of what to do when a male-identified person (or even someone with a masculine name) submits to our publication.   And it reinforces another problem: the idea that one can “tell” someone’s gender by looking at them.

We should not be policing the gender(s) of others, ever.  Full stop.  Particularly not as a way to promote the demarginalization of other genders.  Submitters who are trans or outside the gender binary should not have to feel as if they have to “out” themselves in their cover letters in order to send us their work.

Any feedback you could give us on making Broad! a better, more inclusive, friendlier place to those who are trans* or otherwise outside the binary would be greatly appreciated.  You can leave your comments here or at our Facebook page, where this will be posted as well.  I hope to hear from you soon.

At Gawker, Cord Jefferson writes about Stand Your Ground laws and his experience with racial profiling.

xoJane ran a pieace about renouncing marriage on feminist grounds.

Callie Collins discusses Wendy Davis’ filibuster and what it meant to her for The Rumpus:

What I’m asking is that you do not yield to the truly ugly things about Texas—Kimberly McCarthy’s execution, whatever Rick Perry says today, these inconceivable abortion measures that will pass anyway, the deep red of our electoral map, the fact that the happiest news of the week, the overturn of DOMA, doesn’t completely reach down here—to the extent that they fool you into forgetting the other things, the things that should now be evident. Wendy Davis, the sound of those women, the reemergence of a visible, fevered Texas Democratic party, the very real concerns of 26 million people who have been here all along.

The Fairy Tale Review is a journal that publishes folklore-inspired work and they want submissions soon!

These dogs are facing some tough truths.

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Link round-up

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July is International Zine Month! Read a zine! Make a zine! 

This isn’t a feminist/literary link, but NPR has been doing important coverage of the Trayvon Martin case.

Some time ago, Broad! linked to this essay on the Manic Pixie Dream Girl trope on our Facebook page. It made me revisit a piece that Rookie published about the stereotype. Both have got me thinking a lot about the significance of the MPDG trope. As someone who, full disclosure, plays the ukulele and really likes to wear thrifted dresses and bake stuff, I appreciate this insight from the Rookie article: 

“My point is, likening real-life women to MPDGs is offensive. It implies that our habits and interests are affectations designed to attract dudes so we can improve their lives. The Manic Pixie Dream Girl does not actually exist—she is by definition a fantasy. We should restrict the use of the phrase to when we’re criticizing one-dimensional characters in fiction. Otherwise it’s just another way to put women down.” 

Safety Pin Review is literary journal that will not only publish your flash fic/short prose poem online, but will also have someone from their “collective network of authors, punks, thieves, and anarchists” wear it as a patch for a week and document people’s reactions! I think it’s neat. 

In a somewhat similar vein, check out these 10 Guerilla Poetry Projects!

June 2013: Roots

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Christina Matekel Gibson is the winner of our June readers write challenge on the theme of roots. 
Congratulations, Christina! 

You are my Roots

Through the mirror, I watch

your lips purse slightly while shaving,

like a male model from Eastern Europe.

When I roll over, our cat, so childlike, does too.

Last week, I followed a woman and her child shuffling

across an empty parking lot. When they reached

the sidewalk, he shot his hand up toward hers,

knowingly, waiting.

You are the answer to my wiggling fingers in the breeze.