What is essential?
That’s the question we’re all forced to ask during a pandemic. Is a root canal? Are weddings? Mowing the soccer field? Chips and salsa? Haircuts?
What about literary magazines? We sure think so, even when funding is cut. Times are tight. We are taken down to the essentials. We can hardly afford to print more than a page.
But even one page can still be LONG…
Grabbing the final roll of toilet paper off an otherwise empty shelf in a one-way grocery aisle gave us an idea: what if we printed an entire issue on a different kind of page, one that keeps on unfurling, unraveling, just like these days, these weeks, these months...
Calling all quarantined writers:
Belletrist Magazine is seeking submissions of stories, essays, and poetry between 500 and 1000 words written with the express intention of being printed on one single line. No more reading just six inches of text before wheeling back around to do it all over again. Our next issue will begin on the left-hand margin and unravel to the right until it is through.
How will confining a story to a single line alter its narrative? We can’t wait to find out.
So send us your linear histories. Send us a love letter penned on your final roll of TP. Send us a confession to be read by riders of a movable sidewalk in an eerily empty airport. Send us a poem that should be printed on a sequence of billboards along a hundred-mile stretch of highway. Send us an abecedary that could stretch above a children’s chalkboard in a classroom closed forever. Send us a banner that says Black Lives Matter over and over, in every possible way.
All entries must be between 500 and 1000 words and written purposefully to be printed on one single line. Don’t worry about the formatting. We’ll deal with that later. Just arrange your 500- to 1000-word submission in one paragraph without breaks.