by Paul Bowers
Fall Lines, a new literary journal based in Columbia, is accepting worldwide submissions of previously unpublished poetry, essays, short fiction, and flash fiction for its inaugural issue this summer. The deadline is March 16, and cash prizes of $250 will be given in the areas of poetry and prose.
The magazine is the brainchild of Cynthia Boiter, an eminently busy woman-about-town in Columbia literary circles. Boiter, who previously edited the now-defunct lit mag Undefined, is the founding editor of the Columbia arts magazine Jasper. She recently received the Elizabeth O'Neill Verner Governor's Awards for the Arts, the highest honor from the S.C. Arts Commission.
"Columbia has not necessarily been recognized as a literary hub, when in fact we have a tremendous number of professional authors who are a part of our community," says Boiter, who also edited A Sense of the Midlands, a book of poetry, essays, and short fiction inspired by the region.
Fall Lines draws its name from South Carolina's geographic fall line, which marks the edge of the ancient coastal plain and the inland boundary of the state's navigable rivers. In Columbia, the Broad and Saluda rivers converge at the fall line to form the Congaree River.
"This is a literary convergence in a very unique situation, just like the geographic fall line," Boiter says. "We live in a political environment where none of our arts are supported well enough, and we'll see how much talent will rush forth just like the Congaree River."
Fall Lines will replace the July-August print edition of Jasper and will also be available as a free download via the Jasper website and the Richland Library. It will be published in partnership with the University of South Carolina Press, Muddy Ford Press, and One Columbia. The two cash prizes were made possible by donations from the Richland Library Friends.
"We would like for it to start being our summer reader," Boiter says. "People can take it with them to the beach, the pool, or the mountains."
For submission rules, click here.