After seeing Where the Wild Things Are this weekend (along with an audience of other Gen-Xers), I spent some time browsing around Eggers & Co. publications online and stumbled across this wonderful piece by Justin Taylor from The Believer archives, “The Codex Seraphinianus.” You kind of just have to read the article, but I will say it is a mixture of adoration for linguistic systems, ancient texts, and idiosyncratic professors. Taylor guest-edited a popular issue of McSweeney’s back in the day on Donald Barthelme, has his first book of fiction coming out from Harper Perennial in 2010, and was one of the kind people to come to our launch party many moons ago.

I also noticed McSweeney’s has leaked a sneak-preview of their upcoming newspaper issue of the magazine—Eggers reaction to the recent print journalism slump—to be published as McSweeney’s 33, aka The San Francisco Panorama, pictured below and followed by a brief summary from the editors.

sfsoundmedium2Issue 33 of McSweeney’s Quarterly will be a one-time-only, Sunday-edition sized newspaper—the San Francisco Panorama. It’ll have news (actual news, tied to the day it comes out) and sports and arts coverage, and comics (sixteen pages of glorious, full-color comics, from Chris Ware and Dan Clowes and Art Spiegelman and many others besides) and a magazine and a weekend guide, and will basically be an attempt to demonstrate all the great things print journalism can (still) do, with as much first-rate writing and reportage and design (and posters and games and on-location Antarctic travelogues) as we can get in there. Expect journalism from Andrew Sean Greer, fiction from George Saunders and Roddy Doyle, dispatches from Afghanistan, and much, much more.

Utne Reader comments on “Digital Storytelling” and takes time to discuss cellphone based magazine CellStories, writing, “I’ve been reading CellStories on borrowed iPhones and have found the daily dispatches to be just the right length for the current limitations of the computer screen.”

New lit mag on the way in 2010 from Ryan W. Bradley and Paula Bomer: Sententia.

The Collagist’s third issue is up, with new fiction from Matthew Derby, Roxane Gay, Sarah Norek, and Catherine Zeidler, and more. Editor Matt Bell offers a nostalgic look at expired lit mags in his editor’s note:

At first, I thought that I’d give away most of the magazines. Some of them were ten years old or older. Others were magazines I’d only bought single issues of, never to read the magazine again. Some were magazines that are now defunct, or that published kinds of work that I no longer read very often. I grabbed a box and began clearing what I could off the shelves. But then a funny thing happened: I started reading the magazines again, thumbing through and finding stories I’d forgotten over the years. Some were by writers I’d never heard of and never saw again. Other contributors were strangers then, but have somehow become people I’m lucky to have as friends…

dorothyparkerA message from the anonymous editors of > kill author: “The third issue of > kill author is now online. We hope you enjoy it.” The Dorothy Parker issue.

Finally, an interesting column I’m going to keep an eye on: T.K. writes weekly for This Recording on poems currently out in lit mags. This week he writes about The Paris Review, Frederick Seidel, and noir poems in Black Clock.

Every Tuesday, Travis Kurowski presents Luna Digesta selection of news from the world of literary magazines. Travis is the editor of Luna Park, a magazine founded on the idea that journals are as deserving of critical attention as other artistic works.

  1. Brian Mihok

    Great find on “The Codex Seraphinianus.” I read that article a couple years ago and found it so entertaining and exciting, and yet not too many people seem to remember it. Well, it’s not like I go around talking it up either. But still. Thanks for reminding me about it.

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