Students bring ‘The Willow Literary Magazine’ to online format for first time
For the first time in its history, “The Willow Literary Magazine” has gone digital. Founded in December 1998 as a student organized literary publication, the magazine’s purpose has always been to encourage and celebrate creative expression within the campus community through the publication of poetry, prose, artwork and photography from the student population.
In the past, ‘The Willow’ is published as a print publication twice a year with the financial support of the Activities Funding Board. But in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic with students moving to completely remote learning, Isabel Thornton ’21 and Emily Grant ’21, the two editor-in-chiefs of the magazine, decided it was time to do an online version of the magazine through WordPress.
“We love having the physical copy of the magazine — something tangible to hold onto — but we’re so grateful that we could still digitally publish our hard work from this semester,” said Grant, who is double majoring in english communications and creative writing and publishing. “The online format has definitely helped us reach a wider audience; I was able to send the link to my friends from home and my family members, who might not have gotten the chance to see the magazine in its usual format.”
Grant and Thornton thank Dr. Jennifer McClanaghan, associate professor and writer in residence, and everyone in the Department of English, Communications and Media for giving them the education and skills needed to create ‘The Willow.’ The online version’s success is also due to the hard work of Ryan Miech ’21, who is a studio art major with a concentration in graphic design and illustration and a work study student in Design Services.
During the process of going online, Miech had a lot of fun with turning “The Willow” into a website.
“With a traditional book, it goes to front to back. There is a linear path through reading a book or a magazine,” Miech described. “With a website, that is not the case. Websites branch out. So learning how to transition between these two different progressions was important. I learned a lot about web design just from having to figure out how to make everything flow together.”
The rest of the club members for ‘The Willow’ have worked hard to promote the new online version on social media, and there is hope that an online version will supplement a print version moving forward.
Thornton joined “The Willow” the moment she got to Salve Regina during her first year at Club Rush. Since then, she’s continued to be involved in various capacities. This was the first year that there were two editor-in-chiefs to share the workload.
” ‘The Willow’ has been one of the best experiences of my Salve career,” said Thornton. “It’s the most rewarding thing to show off the incredible talents of so many Salve students and to see how proud they are of their work …. I didn’t expect the transition to go this well, but I’m so proud of the result, and I’m beyond grateful for the people who made it happen.”
Check out the Spring 2020 online version of “The Willow Literary Magazine” here.