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Dash Literary Journal Focus Is on Short, Emphatic Expression

March 27, 2014

Cal State Fullerton's student-run literary journal, Dash, seeks to enhance communication with a 'dash' of "short, emphatic expression."

"Dash has found its niche with short item," explained Stephen Westbrook, associate professor of English, comparative literature and linguistics and faculty adviser for the publication. "The challenge for every year's editorial staff is to maintain consistency, to stick to the call for brevity."

First published in 2008 and based in the University's English, Comparative Literature and Linguistics Department, the journal is a joint effort of the Creative Writing Club and the department's undergraduate and graduate students. Dash includes poetry, fiction, creative nonfiction, literary criticism, hybrid texts and artwork.

"Dash has been instrumental in providing me real-life experience with how a publishing house would work, but on a more manageable scale," said Charity Hammond, one of the executive members of the publication team.

"We are tasked with selecting the journal's content according to the identified Dash aesthetic that we collectively determine at the start of each term. We are responsible for designing the journal's unique look, promoting our publication, planning events to elevate the journal's visibility and raise money to produce the journal.

"Furthermore, we also create and maintain our web and social media presence," Hammond continued. "All of the same things that happen at major publishing houses. Those of us looking to move into publishing after we graduate benefit greatly from this experience."

"I've been part of Dash for three years and within those three years, I learned just as much about the publishing process as I have about my own writing," said Bri Whitehall, vice president of the Creative Writing Club and the journal's co-editor-in chief. "Through the dissection of the submissions we received, I began to see the true art and craft of creating a poem. It's inspired me to consider working in the publication world and maybe even starting my own journal one of these days."

"The experience has been extremely valuable for so many reasons: I have learned, I have grown, and the skills I honed here helped me land an internship at a commercial e-publisher as an editorial intern," said Hammond.

April 8 Fundraiser

While the journal does receive campus support, the editorial staff holds an annual fundraiser and a live fiction-writing contest. This year's event, "Clash of the Super Flash," will be held from 8 to 10 p.m. Tuesday, April 8, in the Titan Student Union Pub.

Tags:  Academics & ResearchTitan Pride