contributed by Alaina Hornberger
Putting together a Rubicon’s cover may seem like a one man job, but this year’s publication’s cover is designed by Sara Ivey, a senior fine arts major from Newton, and put together by Alaina Hornberger, a senior graphic design major from Prattville.
The Rubicon, the campus’ literary journal, has been a great source for all the creative writers at the university to showcase their works, with the opportunity to be published every semester.
The Rubicon is a literary journal run by the students of Troy University and published by the English department in collaboration with the department of Art and Design.
The journal, traditionally published every fall and spring, usually consists of poems and short stories written and submitted by the students at Troy.
“The purpose of the Rubicon is just to give creative minds an outlet and the ability to actually be published,” said Alaina Hornberger, a senior graphic design major from Prattville, and the art director for the Rubicon.
After the students submit their pieces, the Rubicon’s poetry and prose selection groups come together to decide which pieces will be published in that semester’s publication.
“All students are welcome to submit their works, even if they are from other campuses,” said Ben Robertson, a professor of English.
Everything involved in the publication process is handled by the students, from picking of the works, to editing and designing the publication.
During the selection process, the editor-in-chief goes through the submissions and compiles all of them into a Google document after removing the author’s names.
This anonymity makes the selection process unbiased and more effective, as the other students in the selection groups won’t know whose pieces they are reading.
The compilation is then available for the rest of the staff members to see. After everyone goes through the works, the poetry and prose selection committees have separate meetings in which they discuss the pieces and vote on them.
The committee goes on to give constructive feedback on how the writers whose pieces were not chosen might improve, encouraging them to resubmit their work with the suggested improvements.
Hornberger, who is a part of the selection committee, encourages the students to submit their work and advises them to focus on the grammar.
Katelyn Smith, a senior English major from Andalusia, is the current editor-in-chief of the Rubicon. During her first few years, Smith’s work was published in the Rubicon and she said working on the other side of the publication with the staff has helped her gain a different sort of experience, as she got to see the hard work that goes into the publication.
“The best part is probably just reading everybody’s different submissions and seeing the kind of artists we have here on campus,” Smith said.
“I get to see people who don’t write in the way that I do, people that write way better than I do, and I also get to experience all the different genres.”
On the other hand, Hornberger said her favorite part of being involved with the publication is when the end product is published.
She enjoys sitting down and flipping through it, looking at all the progress and results of the hard work.
After the final version is printed, the Rubicon holds a launch party. All the authors who are published in the edition and various faculty members are invited to this party.
The party usually consists of food and music, and the authors are encouraged to read their works out loud if they would like to do so.
The new volume for the Rubicon is distributed during the party to the writers as well as the people who like to attend it.
“It is a good opportunity to meet other people who have been published and to talk to people about getting published to a press outside the university,” Smith said.
Robertson encourages everyone to “just write” and be involved with the publication in any way they can, either by being part of the staff or by submitting their work.
The journal includes works from different genres of literature and submission of all kinds of work is encouraged.
Not only does the Rubicon feature literary works of the students, but also includes their art submissions.
“To me there is no better feeling than putting your work out there and just getting it ‘accepted.’ It’s a great experience to have a book where you can show your friends and family saying, ‘Look, I wrote this. I am in here,’ really does great for your self-confidence,” Smith said.
Smith encouraged everyone not to limit themselves and to send their works, even if they don’t thinkthey are “good.”
“A lot of times people don’t think that what they wrote is great but usually those are the best ones in the whole book,” Smith said.
Interested students can submit their work by emailing the publication at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The rules and requirements for the submissions and all other information can be found at spectrum.troy.edu/rubicon/index.htm.