Belmont Story Review (BSR) has been recognized by the National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE) as a REALM First Class magazine. This year, schools in 42 states and five countries nominated 262 student magazines ranging from middle school to higher education. Of those, 38 magazines were awarded the contest’s highest distinction, REALM First Class.
The REALM program publicly recognizes excellent literary magazines produced by students with the support of their teachers. REALM is designed to encourage all schools to develop literary magazines that celebrate the art and craft of writing.
“It’s an immense honor to receive the REALM First Class award from NCTE,” said assistant professor Sara Wigal, BSR editor and media studies department chair. “Each year, Belmont publishing students work so hard to produce a professional-caliber literary journal and having that recognized on the national scale will bring a smile to our faces for the rest of this semester. We are grateful and will be reading a lot of poetry and prose in the coming months to celebrate and settle on the selections for our 2023 volume.”
Established in 2016, Belmont Story Review is a national magazine of literary arts, faith and culture, charming readers through diverse storytelling including fiction, personal essay and poetry.
BSR was founded by Richard Sowienski who served as the first editor of the magazine and former director of publishing. Today, it operates as a practicum course where students gain hands-on experience running a magazine with senior Sophie Slusher serving as managing editor. Primarily student-run, the magazine is open to all students who have taken the prerequisite publishing process course.
BSR’s eighth volume is set to publish in August 2023 and has received a record-breaking number of submissions: 698 prose and 503 poetry. Submissions are not open to Belmont students or faculty—although alumni of four years or more can submit—and contributors are paid.