Lake Superior State University
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Border Crossing

Founded in 2011, Border Crossing is a literary and arts journal published by the Lake Superior State University Creative Writing Program. A print journal for its first four years, Border Crossing went online for its fifth issue and began paying selected authors. Uniquely situated on the border of the United States and Canada, the journal is committed to publishing the best work submitted by emerging and established writers on both sides of the border and abroad, as well as supporting literacy and the literary arts in the sister cities of Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan and Ontario. The editors are especially interested in writing that crosses boundaries in genre or geography, and voices that aren't often heard in mainstream publications. The best way to see what this means is to read the latest issue online. Fiction, nonfiction, and poetry submissions are read blind and go through a rigorous editorial process, which involves multiple readings by student and faculty editors at the Lake State Creative Writing Program. As a “teaching journal,” one of the editorial goals is to create editing and publishing opportunities for our English and creative writing students prior to graduation. Visual art is only considered from residents of Michigan and Ontario in order to provide an outlet where area artists may publicize their work.

The journal has featured talented Canadian, American, and Mexican writers and artists whose work has appeared in many widely-read publications, including the Best American series and W.W. Norton and Houghton Mifflin anthologies, as well as The Atlantic, Glimmer Train, The Iowa Review, Missouri Review, New England Review, Pleaides, Ploughshares, Poetry, Prairie Schooner, Southern Review, Poetry Ireland Review, Decanto Magazine in England, and The Canadian Federation of Poetry. Additionally, the editors have published a number of authors for whom Border Crossing was their first publication, and they are always very excited about discovering new talent.

On an annual basis, the editorial board nominates selected extraordinary pieces for inclusion in The Pushcart Prize: Best of the Small Presses. They also send fiction to the O. Henry Prize Anthology, in which the journal has been listed alongside other publications with a serious commitment to short fiction. Beginning with volume 5, the first online edition, the editors will also nominate work for the storySouth Million Writers Award and the Best of the Net Anthology series. Finally, with volume 5, the journal has begun featuring selected authors. Every year, after all of the work in a genre has been accepted, one author is chosen in each genre for a paid feature. Featured authors will receive prominent placement in the journal, a published interview with the editors, and a $100 honorarium. One artist from Michigan or Ontario will continue to be featured each year and receive the same benefits.


Interested in publishing? Border Crossing offers credit-bearing publishing internships in fiction and poetry. This is a great opportunity to become familiar with the editing process and learn the best practices for submitting your own writing to journals, contests, agents, and/or publishers. Once you have earned credit in ENGL 221 and ENGL 223, you can apply for one of our internships by contacting the instructor. Please note that you must perform satisfactorily during the fall journals internship in a genre in order to progress to the editing internship in that genre for the spring, and the internship series must be taken in sequence. If you complete the sequence, you will be listed on the masthead as an assistant editor in your genre and you will write, edit, and publish a book review in the journal, all of which looks great on your resume!

Check out our press releases about interns from previous years here and here. Read book reviews by 2015 interns here and here. Meet our 2016 interns here.

Fiction Internships

  • ENGL 399 Internship in Fiction Journals (1, FALL)
  • ENGL 399 Internship in Fiction Editing (2, SPRING)

Nonfiction Internships

  • ENGL 399 Internship in Nonfiction Journals (1, FALL)
  • ENGL 399 Internship in Nonfiction Editing (2, SPRING)

Poetry Internships

  • ENGL 399 Internship in Poetry Journals (1, FALL)
  • ENGL 399 Internship in Poetry Editing (2, SPRING)

Contact Mary McMyne about the fiction internship series, Jillena Rose about the nonfiction series, and Julie Barbour about the poetry series.

What is a Border Crossing Internship?

Katherine Del Rose, 2015-2016 assistant fiction editor, describes her yearlong internship with the journal as follows:

"When I first started this internship with Border Crossing in the fall, I had no idea how much work it would be. Reading ten stories a week, analyzing their use of craft, and determining if they were publishable was... difficult. That being said, this course was by far my favorite course all year. I have learned so much about the work that goes into literary journals and publishing that I look forward to using one day in my career.

One thing that really surprised me about interning with the literary journal was the variety of stories we receive, and how quickly I would need to form an opinion. Before this internship, if I read a piece of fiction that I didn't like, I would be content to dislike it and not understand why. Now, I can look deeper into a piece and see the intermechanics that make it function. Characters, plot, setting, dialogue, and believability are just a few things that go into making a great story, and if any one of these is off from the story, it can leave the reader far from enjoying a piece... Apart from reading through stories and trying to assess different devices in use, I also made edits to the pieces that came close. Writing can really convey a clear look into someone's mind, and it was really awesome getting to look at the imaginations of people around the country that were interested in the same craft that I was...

This course has taught me a lot about the editing world, and this internship makes me very eager to get out into the real world. This is also linked with how my understanding and appreciation of fiction has changed, which it has greatly. I had never really looked closely at what made a piece of fiction work until this course, and I think that it will really help me better form my own stories and advise other writers that might be struggling in certain areas....This internship has been so much fun, and I've really enjoyed the relationships I've formed and the things I've learned. I would strongly recommend this course to anyone who is interested in publishing or editing work as a career."


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