Literary Mama: A Life Transformed

In January 2014, the online literary journal Literary Mama took a chance on a mama writer and editor living in Ohio who had very little professional editing or writing experience. While I no longer have the cover letter I sent to the then editors, it included something along the lines of “what I lack in experience I more than make up for in enthusiasm.”

Apparently, I have enthusiasm in spades, for here I am, almost eight years later, still with LM, now in a senior editor role.

To say that my experience with Literary Mama has been transformative would be a gross understatement. In 2014, I had only recently decided to prioritize writing, and while I had a draft of the book that would someday become Rewrite the Stars, I still had a lot to learn. Furthermore, my publishing credentials only included my scientific writing, a nonfiction coffee table book, and an honorable mention in a local writing contest.

And now? My writing has been featured in multiple online and print venues, my editing clients run the gamut (from published authors to hybrid publishers to education consulting companies), and my second novel is with beta readers (with at least eight more novel drafts living on my computer). In short, Literary Mama helped me realize a dream and then some.

And I’m not alone in reaching my dreams. Since 2003, Literary Mama has published work by both established and emerging writers. And while the masses can’t see it, our organization has never been a simple “accept or reject” sort of place. We work with our contributors, some of them extensively, to bring their stories, their profiles, their essays to life. We walk them through revision, we coach them, we provide a level of attention that very few, if any, literary journals do. And guess what? We’re not doing it because it’s our job—the whole organization is run by volunteers. We do it because we love writing, we love giving back to the literary community, we love making dreams come true. We want to give mama writers a voice, and I think we’ve been successful in that mission.

Asking for money is never any fun, but I ask you to consider this today. If you believe in my writing, if you support the arts and humanities, if you enjoyed Rewrite the Stars, if you’ve been engaged in my interviews (for my own series and those I write for Literary Mama), if you believe in the work of volunteers, if you believe in helping people find their voices so they can then help others do the same—then think about “buying me a coffee” by donating to Literary Mama today. All it takes is a couple of clicks!

If every person I know, supported, or interviewed chipped in a few dollars, Literary Mama would be well on its way to its fundraising goal, well on its way to continuing to publish work “that celebrates the journey as well as the job,” well on its way to transforming other mama writers out there too.

Thank you so much for your consideration.

Photo of hands by Tim Mossholder on

Leave a Comment