New Leadership for The Gettysburg Review
By Meghan O’Donnell, Staff Writer
The Gettysburg Review, a renowned literary magazine that is published through Gettysburg College, recently underwent changes in leadership. Mark Drew, who has worked with the magazine since 1998 as an assistant editor, took over in August of this year as editor. Peter Stitt, the founder of the publication, was previously the editor. The Gettysburg Review is published four times a year, containing works of fiction, nonfiction and poetry and showcasing original artwork. It was established in 1988.
In any given year, the Review receives anywhere between 3,000 and 5,000 submissions from writers all over the United States. The editors will choose to advance about 15% of these to a second round of assessment, but ultimately less than 1% of them will be published. About 25 authors will appear in each edition. There is no overarching reason why editors choose to publish specific pieces, said editor Mark Drew. Ultimately, Drew looks for writers who “demonstrate [an] ability to manipulate the language in beautiful ways.” It is often a matter of what is fresh and striking: “I want to be stunned, I want to be surprised,” he said.
Drew’s responsibilities at the Review have increased since he took over the role as editor. Though he has been reading manuscripts since he began working with the magazine, it is now his job to make the final decision on which pieces are published in the magazine. He has to choose the cover art for the magazine, take care of the website and supervise the groups of readers who help to work through the initial submissions. In his new role Drew is also considering the idea of allowing writers to send submissions to the Review electronically through Submittable, a website that streamlines the submission process for writers. Currently, the Review only accepts print submissions.
While it is published mainly in print, the Winter 2015 edition of the magazine is the third edition to be released digitally. Subscribers to the Review can download the e-book version online and read it on their tablets and e-readers. This digital version is an attempt to bridge the gap between maintaining the integrity of print as a medium for publishing and the expanding world of electronic books and magazines. He understands the value of having the e-book version of the magazine as well, but “as long as I am editor,” Drew said, “I will always want us to be in print.”
The Winter 2015 edition of the Gettysburg Review is now available for purchase in the College Bookstore.