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CONTRIBUTORS’ GUIDELINES

The Mythic Circle solicits original fantasy-inspired stories and poems from the membership of the Mythopoeic Society and from the larger world. We are also looking for original visual art contributions in the form of jpeg or other suitable file formats.

As a small online literary magazine, The Mythic Circle is published electronically by the Mythopoeic Society, an organization which celebrates the work of J. R. R. Tolkien, C. S. Lewis, and Charles Williams. These innovative writers drew upon the rich imaginative tradition of fantasy literature stretching from Homer to H. G. Wells, and they returned fantasy to a respectable place in adult literature.

The Mythic Circle exists primarily for the benefit of writers and artists (to whom we refer collectively as "Authors") trying to develop their craft in the mythic tradition. Regarding length limits, the editors must think very well of a contribution more than 5000 words long to publish it. By editorial policy, we favor our subscribers.

The editors look mostly for original work by authors following the mythic tradition; this can include a certain amount of commentary and allusion to the works of other mythic authors (though such allusions and commentary are not necessary). However, the editors do not wish to see "fan fiction” such as stories that make use of characters, settings, or images from works by living or recent authors or artists or any works still under copyright.

Submissions and letters of comment should be e-mailed to mythiccircle@mythsoc.org.

As a small literary and arts publication, we do not pay cash for contributions. The copyright for works published in The Mythic Circle remains with the author or artist, except for the specific rights given for publication in The Mythic Circle, for future reprints of a particular issue in print or electronic (including online) formats, and for distribution of The Mythic Circle to third party database partners. Artists can request that a watermark be placed upon the digital image in the SWOSU archive, but such watermarks must be specifically requested or they may not be inserted.

For more information, check the society’s website at http://www.mythsoc.org/.

Current Issue: Issue 42 (2020)

Editors’ Introductions

The Mythic Circle is a creative writing journal devoted to fantasy-inspired creative works; it has been published by the Mythopoeic Society since 1987, and earlier versions of the Society’s creative writing efforts extend to Mythril (1971 to 1980) and Mythellany (1981 to 1987). These journals have now been archived in their entirety at https://dc.swosu.edu/mythsoc/ through the efforts of the Society’s archivist, Phillip Fitzsimmons, and digital assistant Benjamin Dressler. All but the current issue may be downloaded for free, and the current issue may be purchased as a digital download or ordered as a print-on-demand title from Amazon.

In its thirty-three year existence, The Mythic Circle has benefitted from the creative efforts of a wide variety of authors and artists, and some have been repeat contributors, including some who have written for this issue: Joe R. Christopher, author of the Arthurian dialog “Six Years After the Wedding,” contributed to the very first issue of The Mythic Circle; S. Dorman, author of “Working Title,” imagining a conversation between C.S. Lewis and Mark Twain, contributed two stories to the second issue; David Sparenberg, author of the poem “Ritual,” became a contributor with several poems in Issue #11; Lee Clark Zumpe, author of the dragon tale “The Dreaded Tome of Urawn,” first appeared in Issue #15; Kevan Bowkett, author of “Troll,” first contributed a poem to Issue #37; Holly Day’s first poems for us appeared in Issue #40, Lawrence Buentello and Meg Moseman joined us just last year, and all of these authors have made subsequent contributions after their first. We have deep connections like these with many additional authors.

But we also welcome new voices, such as Mary Alice Dixon, author of the folktale “The Tree That Stood Forever,” Ella Wallsworth-Bell, author of the fantasy romance “Falling for a Cornish Maid,” Ama Kirchner, author of “What Iphigenia Knows,” drawn from Greek mythic roots, and DC Mallery, author of “Equuleus of Troy,” also amplifying a tale from the Trojan War. Welcome!

With the retirement of Gwenyth Hood after twenty-two excellent years, new editors Victoria Gaydosik (fiction and general management) and Nolan Meditz (poetry) have introduced a few new ideas: for the first time, this issue includes audio files of each story and poem read by a cadre of volunteers on quite short notice. The files will be available at https://dc.swosu.edu/mcircle/. If this feature proves popular, we hope to repeat and expand it in next year’s edition. Other plans include an index of every work published in Mythril, Mythellany, and The Mythic Circle; collections of individual writers’ complete contributions as separate volumes where permitted; expanded graphic elements; celebratory volumes for our upcoming 50 anniversaries; and possible discussion forums through our archive on the Digital Commons. We hope to draw together the tradition of excellence behind us and add new digital features of interest to our readers. We welcome your insights and suggestions.
-Victoria Gaydosik, fiction editor and general manager

From the Poetry Editor: I am Dr. Nolan Meditz, an Assistant Professor of Composition Studies at Southwestern Oklahoma State University, and it is my honor to serve as Poetry Editor for The Mythic Circle. For Issue 42, both Dr. Gaydosik and I have endeavored to compile the works that best exemplify mythic narrative and lyric composition.

In my role as poetry editor, I aim to select poems I feel leverage mythic tropes to speak to an innate sense of wonder about the world and/or retell old stories in interesting ways. I also try to find a balance of voices in the submissions I receive in order to reflect the variety of tales, contexts, and emotions that act as the foundation of mythopoeic literature. Individual poems in this volume achieve these editorial objectives by recontextualizing Homeric epics, providing stark images of ruined worlds, mourning the loss of magic, and singing to the beauty of ritual and nature, just to cite a few examples.

It is my hope that the poems you read here preserve the wonder, the mystery, and at times even the weirdness inherent to the mythopoeic.

Full Issue

PDF

Mythic Circle #42
The Editors

Editorial Introduction

Contributors

PDF

Our Contributors
The Editors

Fiction

PDF

Epic
David Sparenberg

PDF

Equuleus of Troy
DC Mallery

PDF

Troll
Kevan Kenneth Bowkett

PDF

Working Title
S. Dorman

PDF

Betrothal
Lawrence Buentello

PDF

Falling for a Cornish Maid
Ella Wallsworth-Bell

Poetry

PDF

Ritual
David Sparenberg

PDF

Loss
Holly Day

PDF

Deathwater, Dusk
Meg Moseman

PDF

Deathwater, Day
Meg Moseman

Drama

PDF

Six Years After the Wedding
Joe R. Christopher

Notes and Letters

Book Reviews

PDF

Reviews
The Editors

Co-Editors

  • Victoria Gaydosik, fiction, Southwestern Oklahoma State University
  • Nolan Meditz, poetry, Southwestern Oklahoma State University

Editor Emerita

  • Gwenyth Hood, Marshall University

Archivist

  • Phillip Fitzsimmons, Administrator of The Mythic Circle and Society Archives, Southwestern Oklahoma State University