A look at Thistle

By Kaia Arthur

The first issue of Thistle, Macalester’s new literary magazine, is available today. It contains fifteen submissions of poetry and fiction.It will fulfill student authors’ need for a process-oriented publication, according to founding member Andrew Mirzayi ’10.
“Thistle is aiming to create a writing circle,” said Ryan Dzelzkahns ’10, another founding member. “We’re interested in the whole process of writing, from formalizing ideas, to creating and editing, and finally with publication.”

“It’s a workshop where we give a lot of feedback,” Mirzayi said. “There’s no editorial board. We choose submissions based on votes from people at meetings.”

Mirzayi and Dzelzkahns co-founded the magazine last year with other students from their Environmental Creative Writing first-year course. They published the first issue in December 2006 and a second issue in March with support from English professor Ping Wang, their first-year course instructor, and basic resources from the English Department.

Newly chartered by Macalester College Student Government, Thistle will now receive “reasonable amounts” from the Financial Affairs Committee for each of six issues planned for this year, totaling approximately $800. The organization also received a $200 Community Grant from the English Department.

This money will primarily fund the magazine’s publication, but may also fund a reading open to all students for the release of a subsequent issue, possibly in December.

“[We hope to] become an outlet for those interested in not only expressing themselves, but for those who utilize the experience to grow,” Dzelzkahns said of Thistle’s basic premise.

Meetings are held Sundays at 7:00 p.m. in room 206 of the Campus Center and are open to all.