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Sin Fronteras Poets Headed North

This is an announcement for readers in northern New Mexico.

Las Cruces poets Joe Somoza and Dick Thomas, both of whom have previously served as editors of Sin Fronteras Journal, will be giving a reading on Sunday, October 21, at Jules’ Poetry Playhouse, 1001 5th St. NW in Albuquerque.

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Welcome New Poetry Editor, Frank Varela

Frank reading '15 025

Frank Varela reading,in 2015   Photo by Jill Somoza

After the loss of poetry editor Terry Hertzler this spring, we are delighted to have poet Frank Varela step in to help with Sin Fronteras Journal.  Brooklyn born, Frank is the author of four books of poetry, Serpent Underfoot, Bitter Coffee, Caleb’s Exile and, most recently, Diaspora.  His children’s stories have been published by Riverside Publishing Company and Arte Publico Press.  He worked as a librarian in Chicago, where he was named Hispanic Librarian of the Year by the Illinois Secretary of State in 1997.  He now lives in Las Cruces, and is joining Joanne Townsend, former poet laureate of Alaska, and Ellen Young, who does useful things like run this blog, to complete the trio of poetry editors for issue #23.

The Journal is accepting submissions until June 30.  Please read – and follow – the directions on the submissions page to submit.

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Farewell to Terry

We in the local Sin Fronteras community were saddened to learn of the death of Terry Herztler earlier this month.  He had been missing from a couple of events, but we did not know why.

Joe Somoza, one of the elders of the local poetry community and editor emeritus of Sin Fronteras Journal, wrote this on another blog:

sm 17 4918 Terry HertzlerI’m sad to learn that Terry died. For the past 4-5 years he took part in our open-mics at Palacio Bar in Mesilla, New Mexico, and for the past 2-3 years he was a regular member of our community peer-group workshop in Las Cruces, a sweet, lonely guy who enjoyed the fellowship as well as the poetry discussion. He was a good poet, always bringing something solid and convincing, sometimes a memory from Viet Nam. I’m sorry that he’s gone.

Terry was also one of the poetry editors for issue #22, along with Joanne Townsend and Ellen Young; we were looking forward to continuing with issue #23.  He will be missed.

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Open Reading this Tuesday, April 17

The open reading sponsored by Sin Fronteras at Palacio Bar in Mesilla, which took a hiatus for several months over the winter, is returning this month. “Back by popular demand” might be stretching the point, but we have had several requests and expressions of interest.  Some folks missed us!

Copies of Sin Fronteras Journal #22 will be available for purchase.

Maintaining this event will depend on attendance, so if you live within driving distance of Mesilla, please come, whether or not you have something to read.

Tuesday, April 17 at Palacio Bar.  Come at 7:30 to sign up, buy your drink, socialize.  Reading begins at 8:00.

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Our New Issue

Sin Fronteras/Writers Without Borders #22 is out.  We know it seems a long wait to our contributors, but our all-volunteer crew is pleased to be ahead of last year’s schedule.


Back Cover, #22

Our cover artist for this issue is local artist and poet, Katie McLane, a regular at our readings.

The forty contributors include former editors Michelle Holland, Dick Thomas and Joe Somoza, but the writers come from all over the country, and one from Mexico.  Regular readers will find a mix of familiar names and new ones.

We have a number of bi-lingual poems and one poem presented complete in both English and Spanish.

Poems about rivers, mountains and desert are included, as are poems about family and about loneliness. There are poems commenting on our own southern border, but also poems about September 11 and current troubles in the Middle East.

The full list of contributors: Andrea Abbott, NY; Sandra Anfang, CA; Laura Bandy, IL; Sarah Bigham, MD; Susana H. Case, NY; August F. Cornell, NY; Carol L. Deering, WY; Carol Dorf, CA; Richard Downing, FL; Mary Dudley, NM; Claudette Franzoy, NM; Peter Goodman, NM; Richard Green, NM; Jonathan Greenhause, NJ; Joey Hedger, VA; Dorothy Hemkes, NM; Michelle Holland, NM; Teral Katahara, HI; Sandra Kohler, MA; Jane Lipman, NM; Nadine Lockhart, CA; Lisa López-Smith, Mexico; Terry Lucas, CA; Catherine McGeehan, MI; Frank C. Modica, IL; Benjamin Nash, TX; Susan Nordmark, CA; Mary Oertel-Kirschner, NM; Marilyn C. O;Leary, NM; Claire Scott, CA; Beth Sherman, NY; Michael G. Smith, NM; Patty Somlo, CA; Joseph Somoza, NM; F. Richard Thomas, NM; Judith Toler, NM; Frank Varela, NM; C. Derick Varn, UT; Martin Willets, Jr., NY; John Willson, WA.

If you’d like to submit for Issue #23, consider this: this year’s editors will return next year, so it will give you a sense of what we like if you read a copy of Issue #22.

Submissions open April 1.  Material sent before that date will not be read.

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Our Annual For Love of Lit Reading

Once again, Sin Fronteras is hosting a reading in conjunction with Las Cruces’ For Love of Art Month.  Members and friends of Sin Fronteras will be reading on Saturday afternoon, February 24.  Thirteen local poets will read. Michael Mandel will be the M.C.

Join us at the Branigan Cultural Center, 501 N. Main Street, from 1:00 to 3:00 p.m.


Issue #22 out soon

This year’s issue of Sin Fronteras/Writers Without Borders Journal has just gone to the printer.  We, the editors and production team, are excited about this year’s mix of pieces.  We’ll say more about it when we get the new image up.

Copies for contributors should be on their way by early March.

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Work on Issue #22 Continues

The poetry editors and the prose editors have done their work, and the process now moves toward production.  This will be slow, in our all-volunteer operation; we hope to have the Journal out in March.

We accepted work from a total of 40 writers, a varied set of pieces from a richly varied batch of submissions.  Thanks to all.

If you submitted and have not heard back from us, please send an email to sinfronterasnm@gmail.com, and we’ll look into the matter.  We are – sometimes excessively so – fallible humans.


Last Chance to Submit

The submissions period for our 2018 issue of Sin Fronteras Journal (#22) ends in one week, on Friday, June 30 (by 12:00 midnight, mountain time, to our email, or postmarked on June 30 for snail mail.

If you’ve been thinking about sending us something now is the time to act.

See the Submissions page and the previous post for all the information you need on what and how.  We’ve seen some good material coming in, but we are eager for more.


Submissions Update

Sin Fronteras Journal is accepting submissions now, until June 30.  There’s no need to wait until the last minute!

What are we looking for?  Previously unpublished work of good quality, on a variety of topics and in a variety of styles.  We like poems about borders, including but not limited to our own border with Mexico.  And not only geographical borders.

We like a bit of Spanish, even a pair of poems, one in Spanish, one in English, as long as both are your own work.  (Two people could submit together).

We like free verse and we like forms, as long as they are done well.

A poem longer than two journal pages (about 70 lines) would have to be very good indeed and shorter prose has a better chance than a piece pushing the 3,000 word limit.

Consider the 4 1/8” print width of our pages before sending poems with long lines.  Show us. where you would want the lines broken

For email submissions, here are some things to remember:

  • Send submissions as a single email attachment. Word (.doc or .docx) works best for us.
  • Include contact information in the document, as well as in the body of the email.
  • Include your name in the document title.
  • Put “Submission – poetry” or “Submission – prose” in the subject line of your email.
  • Include a brief third-person bio in the email itself.
  • Send your submission to sinfronterasnm@gmail.com

For mail submissions and for other details, check the Submissions page.