• Pleiades: Literature in Context is a literary biannual featuring poetry, fiction, essays, and reviews by authors from around the world. Past contributors include winners of the Nobel, Ruth Lilly, Pulitzer, Bollingen, Prix de la Liberté, and Neustadt Prizes, recipients of Guggenheim, Whiting, National Book Critics Circle, and National Book Awards, and many writers seeing their work in print for the first time. The current issue is here. Submission guidelines are here. Subscribe here.
• The Pleiades Book Review is an online supplement to the magazine that features both long-form reviews and shorter reviews of books released primarily by independent publishers.
• Each year, Pleiades—in partnership with Copper Nickel and Gulf Coast—distributes the featured book in the Unsung Masters Series. Each volume focuses on an important writer whose work has been unjustly neglected and features both a generous sample of creative work and numerous essays. Unsung Masters Series volumes are distributed free to subscribers with the Spring issue of Pleiades and are also available through Small Press Distribution.
M A S T H E A D
Jenny Molberg (Co-Editor, Poetry Editor) is the author of three poetry collections: Marvels of the Invisible (winner of the Berkshire Prize, Tupelo Press, 2017), Refusal (LSU Press, 2020), and The Court of No Record (forthcoming from LSU Press, 2023). She edited the Unsung Masters book, Adelaide Crapsey: On the Life & Work of an American Master. She has received fellowships and scholarships from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Sewanee Writers Conference, Vermont Studio Center, and the Longleaf Writers Conference. Her work has recently appeared or is forthcoming in Ploughshares, VIDA, The Missouri Review, The Rumpus, The Adroit Journal, Oprah Quarterly, and other publications. She is Associate Professor of Creative Writing at the University of Central Missouri, where she directs Pleiades Press. Find her online at jennymolberg.com or on Twitter at @jennymolberg.
Caitlin Cowan (Poetry Editor) is the author of the poetry collection Happy Everything (Forthcoming 2024, Cornerstone Press). A Pushcart and Best of the Net nominee, her poetry, fiction, and nonfiction have appeared in Best New Poets, The Rumpus, New Ohio Review, Missouri Review, SmokeLong Quarterly, and The Account, among other outlets. Her work has received support from the Hambidge Center for Creative Arts, the Sewanee Writers’ Conference, and elsewhere. Born and raised outside Detroit, Caitlin earned a PhD in English from the University of North Texas and an MFA in Creative Writing from the New School before returning to the Midwest. She serves as the Chair of Creative Writing at Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp and writes about the intersection of poetry and popular culture at PopPoetry. You can find her on Twitter at @caitlin__cowan and at caitlincowan.com.
Jennifer Maritza McCauley (Fiction Editor) is the author of the cross-genre collection SCAR ON/SCAR OFF (Stalking Horse Press) and the short story collection When Trying to Return Home (Counterpoint Press). She is also the recipient of fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, Kimbilio, and CantoMundo, as well as awards from Best of the Net, Independent Publisher Book Awards, the Academy of American Poets, and a Pushcart Prize Special Mention. She received her MFA from Florida International University and her PhD in creative writing & literature from the University of Missouri. She is currently an Assistant Professor of Creative Writing and Literature at the University of Houston-Clear Lake.
Clinton Crockett Peters (Nonfiction Editor) teaches creative writing at Berry College. He is the author of Pandora’s Garden: Kudzu, Cockroaches, and Other Misfits of Ecology (2018) and The Divine Coming of the Light: Essays (forthcoming), both from the University of Georgia Press. He has been awarded literary prizes from The Iowa Review, Shenandoah, North American Review, Crab Orchard Review, Columbia Journal, and the Society for Professional Journalists. He has been noted four times in The Best American series. He holds an MFA in nonfiction from the University of Iowa, where he was an Iowa Arts Fellow, and a PhD in English and creative writing from the University of North Texas. His work also appears in Orion, Southern Review, Utne Reader, Catapult, Electric Literature, and elsewhere.
David Wojciechowski (Production Editor) is the author of Dreams I Never Told & Letters I Never Sent (Gold Wake Press). His poems have appeared in Bateau, Jellyfish Magazine, The Laurel Review, Meridian, Figure 1, and other journals as well as in the collaborative writing anthology They Said (Black Lawrence Press). He is a freelance designer and teaches writing and literature in Syracuse, NY. David can be found online at davidwojo.com and on Twitter @MrWojoRising.
Taneum Bambrick (Reviews Editor) is the author of Vantage, which was selected by Sharon Olds for the 2019 American Poetry Review/Honickman first book award (Copper Canyon Press). Her chapbook, Reservoir, was selected by Ocean Vuong for the 2017 Yemassee Chapbook Prize. Her poems and essays appear or are forthcoming in The New Yorker, PEN Poetry Series, American Poetry Review, and elsewhere. She has received scholarships from the Sewanee Writers’ Conference, and the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference. She was a 2018–20 Stegner Fellow at Stanford University and currently teaches online for Central Washington University.
Dorothy Chan (Reviews Editor) Dorothy Chan (she/they) is the author of five poetry collections, including Return of the Chinese Femme (Deep Vellum, Fall 2023 / Spring 2024), BABE (Diode Editions, 2021), Revenge of the Asian Woman (Diode Editions, 2019), Attack of the Fifty-Foot Centerfold (Spork Press, 2018), and the chapbook Chinatown Sonnets (New Delta Review, 2017). Their work has appeared in POETRY, The American Poetry Review, Academy of American Poets, and elsewhere. Chan is an Assistant Professor of English at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire and Co-Founder and Editor in Chief of Honey Literary Inc. Visit her website at dorothypoetry.com.
Jennifer Popa (Special Folios Editor) is a short story writer, essayist, and occasional poet. She has studied writing from Alaska’s interior to the plains of West Texas and now works as an Assistant Professor at Gannon University. She’s currently at work on a collection of short stories and a novel. Some of Jennifer’s most recent writing can be found at The Florida Review, Bellingham Review, Moon City Review, West Branch, Ninth Letter, and Sundog Lit. She can be found at jenniferpopa.com.
Morgan Graham (Managing Editor) is an English PhD student at the University of Minnesota. She has published work in Chicago Review of Books, Colorado Review, Salt Hill Journal, and The Evansville Review. Find her at morgandianegraham.wordpress.com and @morgraha on Twitter.
Kennedy Horton (Associate Fiction Editor) studied creative writing at The University of Missouri-Columbia and screenwriting at the University of California-Los Angeles. Her freelance work has been published in Variable West, Popdust, and Well+Good. Her poetry has been published in Hooligan Magazine. Kennedy was the editor of the poetry book The Anxiety Diaries (2020).
Alli Cruz (Associate Reviews Editor) is a recent graduate of Stanford University, where she studied English and Theater & Performance Studies and was a Levinthal scholar. Her poetry has appeared in Blackbird, Hobart, and The Boiler. Alli is currently a Script Reader at Sundance Institute.
Olivia Ellisor (Assistant Fiction Editor) is a storyteller and lifelong student. She has been published in the University of Houston-Clear Lake’s The Signal, First Flight, and Stephen F. Austin State University’s HUMID. She works at UHCL’s Writing Center. In her spare time, Olivia loves to cheer on the Houston Astros.
R E A D E R S
E D I T O R S – A T – L A R G E
Kevin Prufer (Editor-at-Large) is the author of several books of poetry, including The Fears,forthcoming from Copper Canyon Press in 2023. His new novel, Sleepaway, will appear in 2024 from Acre Books. He is also the author of several other books of poetry, including The Art of Fiction (2021), How He Loved Them (2018), Churches (2014), In a Beautiful Country (2011), and National Anthem (2008), all from Four Way Books. With Wayne Miller and Martin Rock, Prufer directs the Unsung Masters Series. Prufer is a professor in the Creative Writing Program at the University of Houston and the low-residency MFA at Lesley University. Among Prufer’s awards and honors are Pushcart prizes and Best American Poetry selections as well as fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Lannan Foundation.
Phong Nguyen (Editor-at-Large) is the author of three novels, The Bronze Drum (Grand Central Publishing, 2022), Roundabout: An Improvisational Fiction (Moon City Press, 2020) and The Adventures of Joe Harper (Outpost19, 2016), winner of the Prairie Heritage Book Award; and two story collections: Pages from the Textbook of Alternate History (C&R Press, 2019) and Memory Sickness and Other Stories (Elixir Press, 2011), winner of the Elixir Press Fiction Prize. He is co-editor, with Dan Chaon and Norah Lind, of the book Nancy Hale: On the Life & Work of a Lost American Master (Pleiades Press/LSU Press, 2012). His stories have appeared in more than 50 national literary journals and anthologies, including Agni, Boulevard, Chattahoochee Review, Iowa Review, Massachusetts Review, Mississippi Review, Ninth Letter, North American Review, PANK, Prairie Schooner, River Styx, and Texas Review.
Abdul Ali (Editor-at-Large) is an arts administrator and literary activist. He is the winner of the 2014 New Issues Poetry Book Prize for his collection, Trouble Sleeping, and has taught writing most recently at Howard University. He has received fellowships from the Zora Neale Hurston/Richard Wright Foundation, Cave Canem Foundation, and most recently the Robert Deutsch Foundation for his next poetry book project. His poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Copper Nickel, The Journal, and Transitions. His nonfiction writing has appeared in The Boston Globe and The Washington Post magazine.
RM Kinder (Editor Emerita and Founder of Pleiades) is the author of Common Person and Other Stories (winner of the 2020 Richard Sullivan Prize in Fiction, Notre Dame Press, 2021), as well as the novels The Universe Playing Strings (University of New Mexico Press, 2016), An Absolute Gentleman (Counterpoint, 2007), and the story collections A Near-Perfect Gift (University of Michigan, 2006) and Sweet Angel Band (Helicon Nine, 1991).
Gail Crump (Editor Emeritus) is a literary scholar and retired faculty member from the University of Central Missouri, where he taught from 1968–2011.
H I S T O R Y
• Pleiades was founded in 1981 by a group of undergraduate students at the University of Central Missouri under the faculty advisement of Bob Jones.
• In 1991, Rose Marie Kinder turned the staple-bound student publication into a 120-page nationally distributed literary journal with an emphasis on cultural diversity. By spreading the journal to libraries across the state and across the country, Kinder drew the support of community and state arts organizations.
• Starting in 1998, under the co-editorship of Kevin Prufer and Rose Marie Kinder, Pleiades became a full-color glossy journal of national renown, publishing the work of American literary luminaries such as Joyce Carol Oates, Sherman Alexie, and D. A. Powell.
• In 2006, under the co-editorship of Wayne Miller and Kevin Prufer, Pleiades became an international journal, bringing both editors’ focus on literary translation to the magazine, while publishing poetry and fiction in translation from all over the world, from Germany to the Czech Republic, from Japan to the Middle East.
• Phong Nguyen joined Pleiades as fiction editor in 2007, and became co-editor in 2010. As editor of Pleiades, Phong has emphasized the web presence of the journal and raised the profile of magazine as a venue for contemporary fiction and creative nonfiction.
• Over the years, Pleiades has made a point of publishing well-established writers alongside unknown writers. Among the journal’s literary “discoveries” (poets and writers who published work in its pages before their first books were released) are Amina Gautier, Zachary Mason, Alexander Weinstein, Tiphanie Yanique, Adrian Matejka, Ken Chen, Joy Katz, Arielle Greenberg, Christine Sneed, Mark Bibbins, Randall Mann, Hadara Bar-Nadav, and Michael Snediker.
• Jenny Molberg became poetry editor in 2015, joined as co-editor in 2016, and was named Editor-in-Chief in 2018.
MISSION STATEMENT AND STATEMENT OF ETHICS
Begun in 1991, Pleiades: Literature in Context publishes contemporary poetry, translation, fiction, nonfiction, and book reviews, with a specific attention to diversity and inclusion. Since 2018 when Jenny Molberg took over as Editor-in-Chief, Pleiades has also included a special folio, curated by a guest editor. Special folio topics have included: Korean-American Women Poets, LGBTQIA+ Latinx Poets, Essays from the American Southwest, Silences of War: Erasures within Conflict, and more. The Fall 2024 issue will feature a folio of Pakistani writers, edited by Hananah Zaheer. The Pleiades Visiting Writers Series hosts, through in-person, virtual, and hybrid events, acclaimed authors from around the United States, including such writers as Philip Metres, Phong Nguyen, Min Jin Lee, Victoria Chang, Taneum Bambrick, Joy Priest, and many more. The Visiting Writers Series is free and open to the public, serving the Warrensburg community and the literary community at large.
The primary mission of Pleiades: Literature in Context is to discover new literary voices. The magazine seeks to publish emerging writers, most especially writers from underrepresented groups, like writers of color, women, non-binary, and trans writers, and writers with disabilities. Evidence of the journal’s success with this is seen in the most recent VIDA (Women in the Literary Arts) count, which calculates the number of underrepresented writers a literary journal publishes. The creative writing students at the University of Central Missouri have opportunities to intern with the magazine, and many of these students are first generation and non-traditional students, who otherwise would not have access to opportunities to work with professional writers and editors, and to attend conferences with the faculty editors.
The editors regularly take stock of the accomplishments of writers whom we published early in their careers, and this allows us to determine how successful our choices have been over the years. By this measure, Pleiades has been extremely successful. The target audience is different for the two parts of this project, the publication and the Visiting Writers Series. The target audience for Pleiades is broad; it is distributed across the United States and Canada via our distributors (Ingram Periodicals, Media Solutions, and Project MUSE) and our approximately 700-member subscription list. Pleiades’s goal is to more widely publicize and advertise the literary journal and to expand our subscriber list by at least 20% this year through publicity and the publication of quality literature and book reviews.
Publication Ethics and Publication Malpractice Statement:
Pleiades: Literature in Context has based its publication ethics and malpractice statement on the Code of Condust and Best-Practice Guidelines for Journal Editors (Committee on Publication Ethics, 2011).
Editor and Volunteer Reader Responsibilities:
The Editor-in-Chief and the genre editors of Pleiades: Literature in Context, alongside the Department of English at the University of Central Missouri, is responsible for all content published in the print journal and any “online exclusive” content. The editors will evaluate manuscripts without regard to the authors’ race, gender, sexual orientation, religious belief, ethnic origin, citizenship, or political philosophy. The decision will be based on the quality and importance of the manuscript, along with originality and attention to literary craft. Manuscripts are evaluated with relevance to the journals’ mission, scope, and dedication to diversity and inclusion in mind.
The editor and editorial staff must not disclose information about a submitted manuscript to anyone other than the corresponding author, other editors, editorial advisers, board members, or university affiliates, as appropriate.
Disclosure and conflicts of interest
Unpublished poetry, fiction, creative nonfiction, book reviews, or any other content to be published in the journal will not be used by the editors for their own scholarly or creative purposes without the author’s explicit permission.
Originality, plagiarism, and acknowledgement of sources
Authors will submit only entirely original works, and will cite and/or provide quotations of any referenced material.
Multiple, redundant, or concurrent publication
Authors will not submit previously published manuscripts for consideration at Pleiades, and will promptly withdraw any simultaneous submissions upon acceptance at Pleiades. Upon publication, authors retain the right to republish the material in an anthology or book publication, with the understanding that Pleiades will be credited as the original publisher.
M A I L I N G A D D R E S S
Pleiades: Literature in Context
Department of English
University of Central Missouri
415 E. Clark St.
Warrensburg, MO 64093
Phone: 660.543.4268 (Office)