Perhaps by this time next year, Broad Street: A New Magazine of True Stories — an annual collection of themed creative non-fiction — will be able to add "award-winning" to its masthead. The publication, birthed in August by Virginia Commonwealth University's student media organization, has nominated six of its 2013 writers for the Pushcart Prizes.
The national Pushcart Press recognizes the best "poetry, short fiction, essays or literary whatnot" published in the small presses over the previous year. The nominees include Richmonders Lea Marshall, poet, and Chad Hunt, photographer essayist, as well as national names, poet Paisley Rekdal, writer Tama Janowitz, Hebrew language professor Robert Alter, author and essayist Shalom Auslander and writer Jeanette Winston. "The nomination fee is the price of postage," says Gregory Weatherford, director of VCU student media. "It's remarkably egalitarian of them."
With the help of student fees, VCU gave the publication — whose current issue is "Hunt, Gather" — a two-year $5,000 pilot grant to get it aloft. Now it must fly on its own. "I feel very confident that there is support out there," Weatherford says. "This'll show if there is an interest for this kind of publication in Richmond."