15th edition of Tidal Echoes to be released Friday

This Friday marks the 15th anniversary of “Tidal Echoes,” the Southeast Alaska literary and art journal produced by the University of Alaska Southeast. At the journal launch, the annual publication of Southeast Alaskan artwork, poetry and prose will be released to the public, several contributors will read from their work, and the publication’s featured writer and featured artist — Lynn Schooler and Rico Lanaat’ Worl — will speak.

The journal has come a long way from its beginning in 2004, when it was solely a Juneau campus student journal. Now it averages more than 300 submissions per year. Anyone — from high school students to inmates at Lemon Creek Correctional Center to renowned artists of the region — can submit. The only requirement to submit is being a Southeast resident.

“It gives us a canvas to share our work with each other,” faculty advisor and Associate Professor of English at UAS Emily Wall said of the journal. “Each year when the submissions come in, as a writer I’m invigorated and interested to see what my fellow writers are working on right now. I hope local artists feel the same way. I hope it also is a motivational goal and inspiration to students — high school, UAS students, etc. This year we got several really good submissions from high school students. They don’t always make the cut, but I love how the journal inspires them to keep working hard, and keep honing their craft.”

Recently, the journal moved to the online submission system Submittable like many literary journals across the U.S. (don’t worry, they’ll still accept snail mail too). Also, Tidal Echoes will now become part of the Alaska Historical Library’s collection. The journal will be donating extra copies of past editions they have, and will set aside copies of forthcoming editions for the library in the future, Wall confirmed.

One of the unique aspects of “Tidal Echoes” is that it is edited by undergrad, creative writing students, Wall said.

“I believe it’s a core feature of our English program at UAS — that our students get to do the work often done only by graduate students at other institutions. We have two really talented editors this year —Maranda Clark and Elizabeth Rumfelt. They are getting hands-on experience in what it means to be an editor. Our past students have gone on to graduate programs or jobs in the writing and editing field,” she said.

Kaylyn Haslund is the fall intern this year.

Clark, the senior editor of “Tidal Echoes” said she became interested in working on the journal after hearing from Wall during an English class that the journal was looking for a junior editor. The junior editor is the assistant to the senior editor, is mentored on how to put the journal together. Senior year, that student moves up to become senior editor. Clark said she’s learned a lot from the experience, adding that she appreciates how it has taught her the importance of communication, to which she attributes the journal’s ongoing success.

She’s excited for the time when she can attend Tidal Echoes launches after graduation, but is also eager to share this year’s journal, which has many wonderful pieces, she said.

“The writing and the art this year is incredible! If I have to name a few, for the writing, “How to Love Your Body” by Rosie Ainza, “The Kumquat Cure for Hypomanics” by Amy Lortie, “Welcome to the Jungle: Jonestown!!” by Sherman Pitt. For the art, “That’s Alright It’s a warm Rain” by Richard Carter, “Untitled” by Gabriel Edwards, and “See You In Spring” by Kirsa Hughes-Skandijs,” Clark said.

Outside of all the usual submissions for the journal, each year the Tidal Echoes team selects a Southeast Alaska artist and writer to be featured. Both the featured artist and writer will have an interview in the journal as well as a spread of their work, either photos of art or an excerpt of writing.

“We hope the interviews will be both inspirational and teaching tools for younger writers and artists,” Wall said.

Rico Lanaat’ Worl is this year’s featured artist. He is known in Juneau for his formline and other Northwest coast designs, as well as being a cofounder of Trickster Company, a shop promoting indigenous design. He said he thinks a lot of his design is a mix of his cultural upbringing and his training as an anthropologist. He said he would likely speak on the social messaging and reasoning behind much of his work at his talk during the launch.

Lynn Schooler, a Juneau fiction and non-fiction writer, is the year’s featured writer. He has published four books: “The Blue Bear,” “The Last Shot,” “Walking Home” and “Heartbroke Bay.”

The launch will be Friday, April 14 at 7 p.m. at the Egan Lecture Hall on the Juneau Auke Lake Campus. Journals are $5. For more information on how to submit to the 2018 journal, go to: uas.alaska.edu/arts_sciences/humanities/tidalechoes.

Contact staff writer Clara Miller at clara.miller@capweek.com.

Disclosure: While a senior at the University of Alaska Southeast, for the 2015 edition of Tidal Echoes, Capital City Weekly staff writer Clara Miller served as the fall intern. Her job was to solicit submissions around Southeast Alaska. Capital City Weekly editor Mary Catharine Martin is a current member of the Tidal Echoes board.

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