Friday, May 10, 2013

Off The Beaten Track: Beginning a Literary Journal for an International Audience

We're pleased to host Kulpreet Yadav as our guest this week. Kulpreet answers our questions about how he came to start the Open Road Review, which he calls "a literary journal with a global soul."

Kulpreet is the founder-editor of Open Road Review. His creative work has appeared in numerous literary journals. Kulpreet’s latest book, a short story collection, ‘INDIA UNLIMITED – STORIES FROM A NATION CAUGHT BETWEEN HYPE AND HOPE,’ was released on Feb. 4, 2013 at the World Book Fair in New Delhi. More at

Novel Adventurers: How did you start the journal?

Kulpreet Yadav: Open Road Review literary journal was founded in 2011 and the first issue was published on the first of May 2012. We had earlier planned to publish the maiden issue on the first of February, but couldn’t attract enough good submissions. I wanted the first issue to be special and we remained patient for another quarter while we reached out to writing groups and the writers themselves through word of mouth, social media, university circulars etc. By mid-April we had a good number of submissions to choose from.

NA: What are some of the challenges you’ve faced?

KY: For the team of Open Road Review this has been the first experience as editors. While it has been rewarding in terms of righting our individual literary careers, we have lost a few friends. The trouble with being an editor is that your friends expect you to accept their works. And when you tell them that you can’t, careful in putting it across – no writer wants to disappoint another one – that you can’t publish his work, you lose years of friendship. As an editor of Open Road Review now I know why editors of big publishing houses remain away from struggling writers, not hanging out with them, or turning their offers to share a drink.   

Shanti Perez, the fiction editor of Open Road Review, has been a part of our team from the beginning. Her commitment and editorial skills has played a crucial role in the journal’s popularity. Leah McMenamin, the poetry editor of Open Road Review, has been with us since issue 3. The poetry section of the journal is hugely popular among readers and poets and it shows the seriousness with which Leah selects her works.  

NA: Did you create the journal mostly for Indian writers and readers?

The Open Road Review's home page.
KY: Open Road Review continues to thrive among the readers from India and the rest of the world. This is not an India-focused-journal as one would assume. I feel the time has come for the world to see itself as a unified entity rather than a divided one. Indian writing, without a doubt, has its own distinctive flavour. But flavours are best served along with other flavours. Therefore, at Open Road Review we publish the best of Indian writing alongside international writing.

Open Road Review has a dedicated webmaster who likes to keep the website interactive. Readers can send their feedback, there are audio links for most of the stories, a blog section to understand the editors better, and the website is optimized for smart phones and tablets. The social media pages are part of the website and a visitor can download any work to read offline later.

NA: What would you like to add?

KY: Keep reading Open Road Review and sending us your best. The editors would love to hear from you. Remember, we exist for you, the writer and the reader. 

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