Be a part of the Troubadour legacy

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The 2014 edition of the Troubadour.
Photo by Tristan Lawson.

Tristan Lawson

Staff Writer

The Troubadour, UWF’s annual student literary journal, produced by the Department of English, is now accepting submissions for the 2015-2016 issue. For those hoping to break into the world of literature or creative writing, or who are just looking for a place to showcase their art, this could be an opportunity to be published.

In the archives located in the UWF library, one can find issues of the Troubadour dating back to 1993. Throughout the years, the magazine has been influenced by a new group of writers and artists each semester. Student editors, professors and designers work hard compiling content, laying out pages and designing the format. All of this hard work results in a small booklet showcasing the work and growth of writers and artists improving their craft here on campus.

John Fink is an English professor and serves as the adviser to the magazine, but says that all of the work is student-written and student-edited.

The Troubadour accepts submissions of art, poetry, fiction, and nonfiction from undergraduate and graduate students at UWF. “The writers do not have to be English or Art majors. Any student can submit,” said Fink via an email interview.

Fink has overseen this creative writing project for more than 10 years. “Troubadour has existed prior to my time here. At least 15 to 20 issues have been published, at a rate of one per year,” said Fink.

The Troubadour is truly a UWF tradition, and many students enjoy the experience and opportunity.

“It was fun. I got one poem in and I was really excited about that,” said Brittany Soder, senior English and Communications double major. “My family was ecstatic. I had to bring three copies home that summer.”

“I was published a few different times in high school, and I wanted to keep getting those bylines for creative writing in college,” Soder said. “And this is just an easy thing to do. I mean, it’s not easy to get in, but it’s local to the university and university students, so it made sense to just do it.”

Fink said, “Many of the students featured in the journal have gone on to professional careers in teaching, law, medicine, etc.” So, not only is it a great creative experience, but also can be used as a vehicle to build a creative writing portfolio or to just get your work out there.

The deadline for submission is midnight Oct. 31, so students still have time to look through sketchbooks and journals to find the right piece to submit.

“I have a few stories I need to look over and maybe a few poems,” said Soder, who said she plans to submit some of her work again this year.

There seems to be a lot you can take away from the experience, and the rich history of student writers shows that the Troubadour is a champion for creative writing at UWF.

“Creative writing classes challenge writers to think creatively, independently, and complexly about the complicated world in which we all live, and creative writing as a discipline demands rigor, persistence, nuance, and grace — four characteristics which will serve students well in their personal and professional lives” said Fink.