Student-Run Literary Magazine SUNY Oswego Gets National Recognition, Makes Global Connections – Oswego County Today

SUNY Oswego faculty member Soma Mei Sheng Frazier works with students in her Creative Writing Class 313, which is part of the Subnivean Literary Magazine Project which won a 2021 National Award nomination.

OSWEGO – Newly nominated for a 2021 Firecracker Award for Best Debut Magazine, SUNY Oswego’s student publication Subnivean has big plans as they continue to digitally accept prose and poetry from around the world.

Soma Mei Sheng Frazier, Assistant Professor of English and Creative Writing, created Subnivean as part of her Creative Writing 395 and Creative Writing 313 courses, where her students can understand, edit, and work for an international publication.

The Literary Magazine and Press Community (CLMP) offers Firecracker Awards every year. These national awards recognize independently published literature to celebrate books and magazines that contribute to literary culture.

According to the website, “The awards are given in the Fiction, Creative Nonfiction, Poetry, Magazine / General Excellence and Magazine / Best Debut categories. ”

“The CLMP’s nod to Subnivean came at the conclusion of the first annual Subnivean Awards competition,” said Frazier.

To be considered for the Debut category, magazines must be first published between 2019 and 2021. There were only four finalists for this category, and Frazier added that it was a great honor to be taken into account since it is a national competition.

Along with the Firecracker Award, Subnivean was recognized at the FUSE National Colloquium, which is a forum for undergraduate student publishers. Shannon Sutorius, a former fiction editor and event host, was on the panel, representing Subnivean.

“Although my official term as a staff member has ended, I have just done a panel for Subnivean and will be doing the same panel, but on a larger scale, in March 2022, at the Association of Writers and Writing conference. Programs in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania “, mentioned Sutorius.

Professional classroom experience
“Subnivean started at the end of 2020; it’s a class that I created with my students in mind because I wanted them to have a foothold in the literary community, ”said Frazier. “We accept submissions from writers around the world. “

Frazier added that Subvnivean – which means lying or sweating under snow – received submissions from 48 countries and 49 US states. However, she noted that she hadn’t counted the number of submissions for some time, so that could have changed.

Student editors read these submissions, vote, edit, and comment. Subnivean publishes three posts per year: one in the fall, one in the spring, and one in the summer. But Frazier said that could change in a few years.

“When we started we were going to release quarterly, but after the first year we were exhausted and realized that three posts could be better,” she said. “However, it could be four publications in some years due to the inclusion of a print anthology.”

Sutorius said students are required to hold a position and select that position at the start of the course.

“Every student is expected to fill some sort of position, from student editor to talent scouts and social media managers,” Sutorius said. “Each student has to choose a role to work in the magazine at the start of the course, but every semester the staff are constantly changing. “

As a fiction editor, Sutorius focused less on editing submissions for grammar or spelling errors, but instead used a tool called Submittable to sort submissions to select what would be included in. this edition. As the event host, she was responsible for hosting the Subnivean Awards event for spring 2021.

The Subnivean Awards are an international poetry and fiction competition in which top judges participate. For the spring 2021 awards ceremony, the judges included acclaimed writers Daniel Handler (aka Lemony Snicket), April Sinclair and Arisa White.

“The awards consist of eight finalists who read their works, whether poetry or fiction, are judged and then the winner is announced,” Frazier said.

Currently, Frazier and his students are working on their fourth publication and their 2021-2022 Subnivean Awards. The final incoming judges for this awards event will include United States Poet Laureate Emeritus Juan Felipe Herrera as well as Handler. The competition recently opened for online submissions and writers can find out more and submit their work on

Future plans
Although Subnivean is a national publication, Frazier would like to incorporate local writers and organize more local events to spread the magazine.

“I’m from California, so I know a lot of California writers, and we got them to be a part of it because it was virtual,” she said. “But I think it would be nicer for the campus if there were more local writers or events around Subnivean.”

Frazier also hopes to share the post around the campus community, although Oswego students cannot submit to Subnivean, due to potential conflicts of interest. For Oswego students, the student-published literary review, The Great Lake Review, could be a great outlet.

“A lot of students are very new to publishing and storytelling, so this semester we focused on researching writing and voting on it,” she said. “But I’ll be printing flyers so writers are encouraged to join the class, but I’d love to get the word out.”

Sutorius added that next year the course can be taken twice by students so that they can help mentor new students to the course.

“Since Subnivean is divided into two courses, I hope 313 Creative Writing students understand digital storytelling, then these students will take 395 Creative Writing, to mentor those in 313, but also to continue in the lead roles. of the magazine, ”says Frazier.

For more information on Subnivean and to read past issues, visit

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