Dear friends and readers,
Looking ahead to 2008, we are most grateful for the accomplishments of 2007–which were staggering, done on a shoestring, and which you–our readers–made possible. (So if we break our arm patting ourselves on the back, we’ll still have one left to pat yours.) Thanks for helping make 2007 a great year for Guernica.
Party: Fall marked Guernica‘s 3rd year online and its anniversary benefit made a big splash, or at least a fetching ripple in the water. Aboard the Star of Palm Springs on the Hudson River in New York City, Guernica feted itself amongst readers and friends, and announced its forthcoming arrival in print. The benefit was by any measure a great success. Hundreds of attendees caught panoramic views of that ultimate work of civic art–Lady Liberty–while Pulitzer Prize winner Oscar Hijuelos, novelist Frederic Tuten and bestseller Melissa Bank beguiled onlookers on the lower deck; on the upper deck, Jonathan Jacobs, aka the Vintage DJ, spun vintage 45s to recreate a Havana discoteque circa 1959, and rocker Leah Siegel snagged a boatload of new fans. The Colbert Report’s Laura Krafft emceed.
Media Heat: The Guernica effect was further felt in the media. In October, Guernica was hailed by Publishers Weekly for “beating the odds” that typically beset little magazines; Guernica editors appeared on NPR in July to weigh in on political art; throughout the year, Guernica editors, writers and contributing editors showed up on TV shows like the Colbert Report, published novels, other books, poems and stories, and graced the pages of the nation’s magazines, newspapers and lit journals.
Awards: Guernica is also being recognized as a premiere venue within the industry. In December, the Best of the Web 2008, an awards anthology to hit bookstores in July, chose Guernica contributing writer Okey Nbibe’s “My Biafran Eyes” from hundreds of submissions; Nbibe’s memoir of growing up during Nigeria’s civil war was published in Guernica‘s August 2007 issue. Stay tuned… we’re confident there’s more to come here.
Guernica Worldwide: Guernica‘s worldwide readership has been growing steadily over the past three years and print publications in Europe and South America have begun translating and reprinting original Guernica features and interviews. Additionally, scholarly and historical organizations here in the U.S. have asked (and been granted) permission to print and archive Guernica features and interviews.
Guest Sections: The year also launched our guest editor series in fiction and poetry. The series, which has been met with wide applause, will continue in the coming year, and will expand to non-fiction guest editors as well. Of course, we continue to publish unsolicited work from emerging writers in all genres and 2007 produced our highest volume of submissions yet. (So, if you submit, please be patient!)
Publishers: The end of the year brought the hiring of our new publishers, Tara Jepson and Liz Hartman, who will concentrate on fundraising, advertising and subscriptions, as well as other business matters. We’re thrilled to have their expertise in helping the magazine create the financial backbone to build upon our early success.
Most of all, on behalf of our talented, hard-working, and accomplished staff, we want to thank our readers, both new and long-standing. And, as always, your comments, the raves and condemnations, are welcome. We look forward to having you along in 2008, and well beyond.