In its March 2010 edition, The Writer magazine has included PANK, the literary magazine produced in the Michigan Tech humanities department, among its "7 hip literary magazines you need to check out."
That’s high praise from an important publication, according to Matt Seigel, assistant professor in humanities and editor of PANK.
"With Poets and Writers, it is one of the top publications for professional literary writers, whether they are looking for advice on placing their writing in publications, getting jobs, working with agents or finding what to submit where," Seigel said.
With thousands of publications to publish writers’ works, it is impossible to keep track of them all, Seigel said. In a wrap-up section like that in The Writer, writers can scan a group that is talked about by genre or what venue might publish their work. That’s what editor Mary Miller did in The Writer, Seigel said.
And Miller mentioned PANK in the same breath as Open City and Normal School, two renowned publications. " Open City is a big deal," Seigel said. "It contains the best voices of contemporary fiction."
PANK associate editor Roxane Gay is pleased as well. "It’s nice to be recognized as an editor because we normally work behind the scenes. I’d like to hear the name PANK coming out of the mouths of more people and have its stories included among the Best American Short Stories some day.
PANK has grown from an annual print piece to a daily blog, monthly online magazine with ten to fifteen entries and annual print publication, with hopes of becoming semi-annual.
Its 240-page annual print run totals 750 copies that ship to 50 states, Canada, and the United Kingdom, according to Seigel.
"But online we are getting 800,000 hits from 75,000 people in 135 countries," he says, "and we expect to increase by 10 percent this year."
And why does The Writer editor Mary Miller love PANK?
"The blog is awesome, as is writer and associate editor Roxane Gay," Miller writes. "[It] publishes work worth rereading; although many of the writers can be considered ‘emerging,’ the work is always top-notch."