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Feature
Creativity Within: Interns Find Literature Alive at Fence

February 11, 2008

Rebecca Wolff, founder and editor of Fence magazine with intern Diana DeFelice

From left, Rebecca Wolff, founder and editor of Fence magazine, and intern Diana DeFelice, review some of the many manuscripts submitted. (Photo by Mark Schmidt)

When the University at Albany and Fence magazine formed a partnership, the match quickly became greater than the sum of its parts. The literary journal, a long-established voice on the national poetry and fiction scene, and the University's renowned New York State Writers Institute (NYSWI), came together in a collaboration that adds to the growing momentum of the Albany literary community, according to NYSWI Director Don Faulkner.

And, they put students to work.

Senior Brian Sullivan, a political science and English major from Watervliet, N.Y., interned at Fence last semester. "I learned a life lesson," Sullivan said. "Writers have to be in it for more than fame. Fence taught me that success is not all material."

"Graduate and undergraduate interns are really indispensable to the press, in that they keep me in contact with young energy... "
 Rebecca Wolff
"Graduate and undergraduate interns are really indispensable to the press, in that they keep me in contact with young energy and allow me to share what I've learned about running a small press and a journal," said Rebecca Wolff, Fence's editor. "As I tell them, whatever they don't do, I do, and whatever I don't do, they do." Interns send copies of the magazine to its 3,000 subscribers, read submissions, and coordinate Fence's presence at events

Wolff is a prize-winning poet who founded the independent press, which includes the magazine and Fence Books, 10 years ago

Albany has become a literary crossroad because of the Institute, and now we're proudly noticing a community of creative thinkers settling at that crossroad, enjoying the landscape. Rebecca Wolff, Fence, and Fence Books have joined that community, and have become part of that landscape," said Faulkner.

Going forward, Wolff will be expanding opportunities for graduate student interns and collaborating closely with the English department's graduate program. Fence is housed at NYSWI on the UAlbany campus.

Related Links:
New York State Writers Institute
Fence Magazine
Department of Political Science
Department of English

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