NEWS FLASH - aaduna receives more press!!!!!!
POSTED by: The Committee Room -
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Monday, January 28, 2013
TCR Literary Journals Series: aaduna
Aaduna takes its name from the phrase "aaduna si dofa rey" meaning "the world is huge" in the Wolof language spoken in Senegal, Mauritania, and The Gambia. The use of lower case letters in aaduna's name reflects a sense of humility which seeks to serve, strengthen and empower. Its logo, which can be seen as a single face or as two side portraits, is based on a Southeast Asian woodcarving and represents the idea that the world's people may be distinct but ultimately share a common and universal humanity. The joined hands in the logo refer to aaduna's spirit of collegiality and teamwork.
With a stated mission that includes uncovering new and emerging talent, especially people of color, aaduna works toward building relationships with the writers and artists whose work it presents and provides ongoing support and promotion. High among aaduna's objectives is to narrow the distance between the audience and the creative person.
Aaduna publishes three issues annually -- fall, winter/spring, and summer. The blog aaduna notes offers additional material to help keep readers informed about aaduna sponsored events such as art exhibitions and poetry readings in Auburn and elsewhere.
William E. Berry, Jr., an activist and educator, is aaduna's founder, publisher and CEO. Mr. Berry recently took time out of his busy schedule to converse electronically with TCR.
TCR Talks with Bill Berry, Jr., publisher of aaduna
|Bill Berry, Jr.|
|aaduna reading at the Seward House Museum, Auburn,|
New York (photo by Lisa Brennan)
|Poet Cyd Fulton at aaduna reading|
(photo by Cristofe Chabot)
Q: How many submissions does aaduna receive in a typical month? A: Any attempt at averaging would not necessarily present a representative data set...The flow of submissions tend to be more numerous at the onset of a submission period and again towards its end. Invariably, we receive more submissions in the literary genres than we can accommodate and often negotiate publication in a later issue than the one the writer submitted for. In the visual arts, we face more of a challenge in garnishing submissions with a handful of submissions in any given submission period. However, we do pursue certain artists that come to our attention and work with them to compile an intriguing portfolio of their work for publication.
|Poet Sean O'Grady at aaduna reading|
(photo by Cristofe Chabot)
|Poet Tamara Madison at aaduna reading|
(Photo by Cristofe Chabot)
Q: How many people read aaduna? A: From the various analytics that we have access to, we know we are receiving 60,000 visits per month to aaduna.org. Our partnerships with other organizations and access to their social network sites may make our audience figure extremely low and conservative as to actual readership. I do know we have a verifiable international reach that is literally throughout the world, and those figures continue to grow.
Q: Is being unaffiliated with a university a good, bad, or neutral thing for aaduna? A: As a former higher education official, I know affiliation does bring resources that an independent venture struggles to put in place...At this stage of the game, I am pleased with our position as a non-university sponsored organization though we struggle to identify needed resources. As far as legitimacy and reach, we continue to push and broaden the understanding of those entities that support the arts as to who we are and what we need to do and their responsibility for issues of access, equity, opportunity and organizational support.
Q: Is online technology fundamental to your mission? If it were, say, the 1970s, would you have founded aaduna as a print publication? A: Our mission is founded and nurtured in online technology. We recognize that existing only as a print entity would limit the global reach that we now enjoy so aaduna will stay rooted in online publication. With that said, we are challenged to find resources to keep pace with the changes in technology. As far as print initiatives, I am a firm believer that print publications can survive and thrive in a technological environment. One of our long-range plans is to print and publish an anthology of work we have presented as a quality coffee table book, as well as move into publishing chapbooks. I do think print publishing must be geared towards specialized markets to survive and not necessarily for mass-market consumption, which may no longer exist due to the diversity of other information and media outlets.
Q: What is the biggest challenge in running aaduna? A: Keeping (and expanding) a volunteer staff interested and intrigued to do the work that produces each issue. That single issue motivates us to make sure this endeavor is fun and loose. Presenting contributing writers and artists to live audiences helps to keep our fires burning especially when we can host those post-event receptions with the audience or a dinner for the artist(s) to meet our Board of Directors and valued advisors. Quite frankly, even more of a challenge is the need to identify the resources to maintain the technology skill sets that are needed to produce issues and archive them. We have to upgrade our technology and the platforms that we use. Aaduna, even at its young age, needs a “look” that reflects its style and demeanor and techies to create our characteristic feel. We need to make accessing archived issues easier and quicker. So, if there are interested volunteers out there, e- me.
Here's more information --
"Interview with aaduna." Pubslush. 2012.
"Just What is an aaduna?" Auburnpub.com. 13 March 2011.
"Online Art and Literary Journal Reaches International Audience from Auburn." Syracuse.com. 13 September 2012.