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Issue 12, Volume 16 | December 2019

Issue 208, Fall 2019

New Fall Issue #208

Featuring Far Horizons Award for Fiction contest winner "Triage" by Jason Jobin, as well as poetry by Ashley Hynd, O-Jeremiah Agbaakin, Sherry Johnson, Jennifer Zilm, Jennifer LoveGrove, Chinua Ezenwo-Ohaeto, Alyda Faber, Andrea Bennett, Weyman Chan, Melanie Power, Yusuf Saadi, James Scoles, Alia Bhimji, Jade Riordan, Catherine Graham, and Jun-long Lee; fiction by Yilin Wang, Morgan Cross, Rachael Lesosky, and Wafa Al-Harbi (translated by Essam M. Al-Jassim); creative nonfiction by D.A. Lockhart, Anuja Varghese, and Mark Anthony Jarman, and more!

Buy now from TMR's site.

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The gift that keeps giving all year round! Treat a friend, loved one, or yourself to four issues of The Malahat Review at our special holiday rate of $15. Good for new subscriptions or renewals/ extensions of current subscriptions.

Buy a subscription today!

Fall Issue
Book Review

Sea Trial

Brian Harvey’s Sea Trial: Sailing After My Father is a double memoir. The title refers both to the trial of Harvey’s skills with his new sailboat and to his father’s trial for malpractice. The account documents Harvey’s journey around the island with his wife, Hatsumi, along with Charley, their little Schnauzer. Periodically, Harvey recalls an early trip with his father that left him out by Zero Rock, eight years old and “hangin’ on for dear life” while his father tried, futilely, to perform surgery on a malfunctioning engine. He reflects on their fraught relationship as he reviews boxes of papers related to his father’s career as a neurosurgeon[.] 

Read the full review by Carol Matthews on our website.

Enter the Novella Prize

Novella Prize 2020

Our biennial Novella Prize contest is back!

Submit your 10,000- to 20,000-word story for a chance to win $1500. Previous winning entries have also won the Journey Prize and a National Magazine Gold Award.

Entry fee (comes with a one-year print subscription):
$35 CAD for Canadian entries
$40 USD for entries from the USA
$45 USD for entries from elsewhere

Additional entries cost $15 CAD from anywhere, no limit!

This year's judges are Samantha Jade Macpherson and Naben Ruthnum. Read interviews with them below!

Full contest guidelines available on TMR's website.


2020 Novella Prize: Interviews with the Judges

Samantha Jade Macpherson

Samantha Jade MacphersonMalahat Review volunteer Bill Thompson talks with the Novella Prize judge—and 2018's Novella Prize winner—about submitting widely (and wildly), straddling the novel / short story line, and growing diversity in the
writing world.


BT: Do you have specific elements you will look for in the submissions for this year’s contest?

SJM: That’s a tricky one! On the one hand, I’d say, “nothing specific,” because I don’t think it’s a great idea to write to try and please someone else. But on the other hand, I know it’s an unsatisfying answer. I guess I’m looking for writing that feels alive and energetic. Vivid characters, satisfying structural choices, deeply-imagined settings, and careful prose are all good places to start though.

BT: What sort of encouragement can you offer to writers early in their careers, especially those submitting to contests such as this one?

SJM: Contests are great for people who find external deadlines helpful! Submit widely (and wildly). Revision makes the work better.

Writing fiction is difficult, frustrating, lonely, and overwhelming, but it’s also the closest I come to making sense of my life. For me it’s worth it. I hope for you it is too.

Read the rest of Samantha's interview on TMR's website.


Naben Ruthnum

Naben RuthnumMalahat Review volunteer  Samantha Fitzpatrick talks with the Novella Prize judge—and 2012's Novella Prize winner—about doing the work, unpredictable characters, and how contests don’t dictate your worth as a writer.


SF: Is there any advice you would give to someone who is considering submitting for the first time?

NR: The novella contest at The Malahat Review is a bit of a unique one, in that it provides a chance to work on a piece of fiction that’s at that often not-quite-publishable length between short story and novel. I think that’s one of the nice things about it: you can silence the practical part of your mind that insists that working on a novella makes little sense. It makes little sense to write anything at all if you think about it long enough, so it’s always best to just try to think about the ideas and characters and do the work.

I’d also suggest not taking winning too seriously, which I’m afraid I did not do myself when I submitted to The Malahat Review’s contest back in 2012. I was attaching too much value to wanting, needing to win and getting that story published. Contests do not dictate your worth as a writer or the viability of your career.

SF: As a judge for this year’s Novella Prize, what are you looking for in a winning entry?

NR: Strangeness, surprise, insight. Ambiguity. Evidence of care and thought in each sentence.

Read the rest of Naben's interview on TMR's website.

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