Green Mountains Review, based at Johnson State College in Vermont, is a biannual, award-winning literary magazine publishing poetry, fiction, creative nonfiction, literary essays, interviews, and book reviews by both well-known writers and promising newcomers. For the past quarter-century GMR has produced issues of international scope with work regularly selected or cited in the Best American Poetry, Best American Short Stories, Best American Essays, Best American Fantasy and Pushcart Prize series; The Boston Globe recently cited GMR as one of the top ten literary magazines in New England.
Since the New Series began in 1987, GMR has delivered an eclectic mix of styles and sensibilities in prose and poetry, the common denominator being excellence according to our lights as editors. Founded and co-edited by Neil Shepard and Tony Whedon, GMR’s first few issues featured such writers as Julia Alvarez, Hayden Carruth, Amy Clampitt, David Huddle, Denise Levertov, and William Stafford. Over the years, we also published several important themed issues. Early special issues include one featuring Vermont state poet Galway Kinnell, another showcasing the Pulitzer Prize winning Caribbean poet Derek Walcott, two devoted to contemporary Chinese and Japanese writers, and a fifth presenting new Multicultural Writing in America, with a keynote essay by David Mura and prose and poetry by such writers as Khaled Mattawa, Naomi Shihab Nye, Ntozake Shange, G.S. Sharat Chandra, and Reginald Shepherd. Another special issue, on Memory Narrative Poetry, featured a keynote essay by David Wojahn and representative poems by Larry Levis, David St. John, William Matthews, and Donald Revell. Our 10th anniversary double-issue, American Poetry at the End of the Millennium, compiled essays and poetry by such writers as Pulitzer Prize winners Yusef Komunyakaa, Maxine Kumin, Mary Oliver, and James Tate; National Book Award winners and finalists Michael Harper, Heather McHugh, Alicia Ostriker, and Gary Soto; and National Book Critics’ Circle Award winners Mark Doty, Albert Goldbarth, and William Matthews. Our 15th anniversary double-issue was devoted to Contemporary Comic Poetry, celebrating the renaissance of humorous verse in the past twenty-five years – from the satirical to the surreal, the lowbrow to the sublime. It included comic poems by Julia Alvarez, John Ashbery, Charles Bukowski, Billy Collins, Russell Edson, William Matthews, James Tate, and Dean Young. Our 20th anniversary issue on Literature of the American Apocalypse, published in 2007, featured poetry and prose responding to that current moment of American dread, inspired by everything from the Bush administration’s war on terror and war on privacy, to continuing threats of environmental degradation, nuclear annihilation, world-ravaging disease, or whatever else could be imagined by an end-of-days mind. Over eighty writers were represented in this issue, among them Ellen Bass, Marvin Bell, Christopher Buckley, Tracy Daugherty, Denise Duhamel, Bob Hicok, H.L. Hix, David Huddle, T.M. McNally, Benjamin Percy, Betsy Sholl, Alexander Theroux, and Walter Wetherell. Our 2010 fall issue, Age & Influence, celebrates three poets, Ruth Stone at 95, Maxine Kumin at 85, and Stephen Dunn at 70, and examines the nature of their influence on succeeding generations of poets such as Toi Derricotte, Annie Finch, Sandra Gilbert, Dorianne Laux, Laura McCullough, Sharon Olds, Alicia Ostriker, and Molly Peacock.
Twenty-five years into the life of a literary magazine, GMR’s distribution efforts are stronger than ever: we’re represented by four of the top national distributors that place our magazine in bookstores coast-to-coast, and we’re carried by over fifty university libraries. Our poetry and prose continues to win awards, reprinted in Harper’s magazine and online at Poetry Daily and Verse Daily, selected as a literary magazine “Pick of the Month” in Small Press Reviews, appearing in the Best Of series mentioned above, and used as a textbook in university creative writing classes. As the magazine has grown, it has reflected not only the literary predilections of its founding editors but also the preferences of its guest editors. Long-time Editor-in Chief Neil Shepard selected the poetry, book reviews, and interviews for most of GMR’s first 23 years. A few guest editors stepped in for the poetry, among them, Martha Zweig, Katherine Whitcomb, and Daniel Towner. For fifteen years, Tony Whedon edited the fiction; he and Shepard together selected the nonfiction. After Whedon’s departure, the Fiction Editor position rotated among several writers – Daniel Hecht, Jack Pulaski, and Kate Riley – before Leslie Daniels assumed the mantle for the next five years. In 2009, Shepard retired from the college and became the Senior Editor of GMR; Elizabeth Powell was hired as the new Editor / Poetry Editor, Tyrone Shaw and Tony Whedon shared the duties of Nonfiction Editor, and Jacob White joined the staff as Fiction Editor in 2010. Elizabeth Powell and Jacob White serve as the current Co-Editors of the journal.