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Extended Submission Deadline for Issue 4

Extended Submission Deadline for Issue 4

The submission deadline for Montana Mouthful Issue 4 – themed “clowning around” – has been extended by one week. The new deadline for submissions is Wednesday, February 20. While we’ll continue to accept submissions in all categories – fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and artwork – we […]

Montana Mouthful Seeks Submissions for Issue 4

Montana Mouthful Seeks Submissions for Issue 4

Greetings! We hope everyone had a restful holiday season and a Happy New Year! The staff of Montana Mouthful took a much needed break during the end of 2018, but now we’re back and seeking submissions for our fourth issue, which is scheduled for publication […]

And now for our 2018 Pushcart Prize Nominees…

And now for our 2018 Pushcart Prize Nominees…

During our inaugural year of publication, we received many outstanding works of short fiction and nonfiction, poetry, and artwork. Now, it’s our pleasure to announce Montana Mouthful’s nominations for the 2018 Pushcart Prize.

  • “Once Upon a Time” by Rich Furman – Nonfiction – (Vol 1, Issue 1);
  • “Heartbeat” by Jacob Melvin – Fiction – (Vol 1, Issue 1);
  • “Peaceful Spaceship Cottage” by Candice Kelsey – Nonfiction – (Vol 1, Issue 2);
  • “River Song” by Candy Bedworth – Nonfiction – (Vol 1, Issue 2);
  • “Strawberries for Breakfast” by Tim Hatton – Fiction – (Vol 1, Issue 2);
  • “Madeline and the Eternal Storm” by Rebecca Khera – Fiction – (Vol 1, Issue 3).

Congratulations to our nominees!

Montana Mouthful “Haunting” Issue is Live!

Montana Mouthful “Haunting” Issue is Live!

Issue 3 is here, and it’s full of eerie stories, poems, and images submitted by some very talented writers and artists. The issue also includes the winners of our Montana (406) Flash Fiction contest as well as a nonfiction essay written by one of The Shop […]

Montana (406) Flash Fiction Contest Winners!

Montana (406) Flash Fiction Contest Winners!

The staff of Montana Mouthful extend a big sky thank you to everyone who entered our Montana (406) Flash Fiction Contest. (406) is Montana’s area code, so for this flash fiction contest, we asked writers to send us a story that fulfilled two criteria: the […]

What’s Happening Lately?

Greetings Montana Mouthful followers!

It’s been almost one year since we launched Montana Mouthful literary magazine, and it was a year of great joy as we will have published three outstanding issues by the close of 2018. However, it was also a year of great sorrow as we lost one of our editors and founding members, Lisa Huff. We’ve learned many lessons during our initial year of publication, and in 2019, we will be operating as a 501(c)3 nonprofit so that we can continue to publish and raise funds to keep the magazine running.

Our third magazine, the “haunted” issue, will feature many eerie stories, poems, and images. It’s scheduled to publish on October 29, just in time for Halloween. We were thrilled to receive an extraordinary amount of submissions for this issue, and we’re honored that so many writers and artists wish to have their work published in Montana Mouthful. Thank you!

We have also made our final selections for The Montana 406 Flash Fiction contest; check out our website on October 22nd, when we’ll announce the winners!

While we’re busy putting together Issue 3, we encourage you to check out the following “local” literary opportunities:

  • The Montana Book Festival will be held next weekend, from September 27 – 30, in downtown Missoula. The festival includes poetry events, readings, panel discussions, and a book fair.
  • If you like writing shorts, Cutbank’s “Big Sky, Small Prose: Flash Contest” is open until September 30th. Stories must be 750 words or less, fiction or nonfiction. Check out Cutbank’s submission guidelines page for more information.

Thanks again for your continued support, and we look forward to publishing a spooky issue for the holidays.

Seeking Submissions for Issue 3 and a Flash Fiction Contest

Seeking Submissions for Issue 3 and a Flash Fiction Contest

Greetings! On Monday, we published the second issue of Montana Mouthful, themed “secrets.” If you’ve not yet seen this fantastic issue, you can read it on ISSUU for free, or you can purchase digital and print copies on MagCloud. Now that Issue 2 is out, we’re seeking submissions […]

Issue 2 of Montana Mouthful is Live!

Issue 2 of Montana Mouthful is Live!

We are happy to announce the publication of Montana Mouthful’s second issue, themed “secrets.” Once again, we received a variety of powerful stories and images that in some way connect to the idea of secrets. This issue also includes poetry and the debut of a […]

Making Time for Your Writing or Art in Four Easy Steps

Making Time for Your Writing or Art in Four Easy Steps

 

I have a confession. Many writers and artists struggle to find time to practice their craft. But not me. Of course, it’s not because I’m an efficient time manager who operates on a set routine. No, it’s quite the opposite. You see, my life is so chaotic that I’ve simply given up. I don’t even bother trying to make time for writing.

One of the reasons I wanted to be a part of this lit mag is because I need creativity in my life, and I haven’t believed I could find the time to create myself. My government job is busy, but stagnant. And while breathing in others’ creativity is a lot of fun, and while I’m also thrilled about putting other peoples’ amazing works out there, it’s simply not enough. I think those of us who are drawn to creating in whatever form always feel the tug. We know there’s nothing quite like the satisfaction of expressing what wells inside, of shaping something from nothing, of giving our best to our creation.

Obviously, I need to write this article for myself. But based on comments from the other writers and artists I talk to, I know I need to write it for many of you too. With families and jobs and traffic and friends and housework and hopefully a few workouts and that daily need to figure out what to eat, it’s hard to prioritize our writing. Yet, it can be done. Here comes the pep talk.

1. Make it a priority. If it’s not as important as all of those other things we do in our lives, it’s simply not going to happen. And that’s okay. There is a season for everything. Right now, it’s ski season in Montana. Writing is a tug. Snapping into two slender, waxed boards and flying across the snow is more like a shove. I just have to be out there.

2. Commit to a definite amount of time. For me, writing is a priority, but not enough to spend whole days doing it. If writing (or your preferred art form) is a top priority for you, decide how much time you can give. Personally, I can commit to write at least four hours a week. Some of you may have four hours a day. That’s killer. I love a large block of time to immerse myself in words. And for the past few (okay, several) years, my cop out has been that I can’t write if I don’t have a few hours to spend getting into it. However, that way of thinking has stopped me just like hitting a big rock put an immediate stop to my ski and resulted in a nasty fall a few weeks ago.

3. Schedule your time like an appointment. Maybe you have a set schedule and can plan out a month of writing appointments in advance, or maybe you need to plan week-by-week depending upon what’s going on. I may be able to get four hours in on a Saturday, but if I’m going out of town or have too many commitments over the weekend, then I need to make sure I take some time Sunday night to plan when I’ll write during the week. In this case, I have to fit it in before or after work.

4. Keep the appointment. It doesn’t matter if you hear a muse or not. You may have days that are utterly uninspired. But you are at least putting pen to paper, brush to canvas. You’re better off than everyone else staring at their phone or the flat screen. You’re making an effort. And if you do happen to miss an appointment, reschedule. Writing adds a lot of meaning to my life, and I feel resentful when I get lost in the day-to-day survival and don’t honor time for my chosen craft. Knowing this, I also know I can’t keep giving up. Four hours a week. Here we go. What’s your commitment?

~Holly

Creating Narrative Nonfiction

Creating Narrative Nonfiction

Narrative nonfiction is a favorite genre of mine as it allows one to blend story-telling with factual information. The genre is also known by other names, such as creative nonfiction and literary journalism.  If you’re a writer who’s never attempted this genre but would like […]