Tag Archives: Starling

A Poetry Shelf gathering: A handful of Starlings read from the latest issue

Starling 10 is not long out so I decided to celebrate this fabulous issue with a wee poetry reading. Starling was founded by Louise Wallace and is co-edited by Francis Cooke. It is a meeting ground for writers in Aotearoa under 25. Long may it continue. I love the way we now have a community of Starlings bringing us poetry delight in all tones and hues. Bravissimo!

Read Starling 10 here, along with a feature on Selina Tusitala marsh and a cool interview with a bunch of Starlings.

The Starling Reading

Pippi Jean reads ‘Internet Friend’

Cerys Fletcher reads ‘I Am Scared Everyone Will Die’

Rachel Lockwood reads ‘Bish’

Caroline Shepherd reads ‘Crush Poem!’

Roman Sigley reads ‘horsegirl’

Joy Tong reads ‘My Sister Sent Me a Video About Wontons at 11pm’

The Poets

Pippi Jean is seventeen and has yet to decide on a music taste. Her work has appeared in Signals, Starling, Poetry NZ Yearbook, Overcommunicate and Toitoi. Last year she was a finalist in the National Schools Poetry Award.

Cerys Fletcher (she/her) is in her first year at Te Herenga Waka. She is in love. She can be found on instagram as @cerys_is_tired.

Rachel Lockwood is Hawke’s Bay born and bred but now living in Wellington and studying a BA at VUW. She was a 2019 National Schools Poetry Award finalist, and has previously been published in Starling.

Caroline Shepherd is a Victoria University student who has been published in Mimicry, Starling and Stasis. She studies English and Public Policy, has a really big voice, and wouldn’t go to the space even if you paid her.

Roman Sigley is non binary, a poet and honours student, an aspiring lesbian heartthrob, French-Kiwi, from Tāmaki-Makaurau. Changed their name this year. Just got published over lockdown in Stasis Journal and Starling Magazine. Finds being perceived a truly incomprehensible experience but is happy to be here.

Joy Tong is a student, writer, musician, professional cat-petter and basil plant enthusiast from Auckland. You can spot her work here and there, like in Signals, Starling and Flash Frontier. She was also the youth winner of the 2019 Sunday Star-Times short story award.

Starling now open for submission for writers under 25


Material must not have been published elsewhere in any form previously, and please do not send us simultaneous submissions (material you have submitted or intend to submit to more than one journal/competition at the same time).

Starling is published twice yearly. Submissions may be made at any time to be considered for the next issue, so the best time to send your work is when you feel it is ready. The editors will read and respond to all submissions as soon as possible, and in any event no later than 8 weeks following the cut-off date for the issue. The editors are unable to enter into correspondence regarding individual submissions or selections.

Cut-off dates for work to be considered for each issue are 20 April for the July issue and 20 October for the January issue.

Poetry: send up to six poems.

Prose: Send up to two pieces, each up to a 5,000 word maximum. Prose may include short stories, creative non-fiction, personal essays or anything else you can surprise us with.

Please send all work as a single document. Pages should be numbered with your name on each page, and work set out at 1.5 line spacing.

Email submissions to editors@starlingmag.com as Microsoft Word or PDF attachments, and include the phrase “Submission for Starling” in the subject line followed by your name. Please do not use unusual formats or paste your submission into the body of your email.

In the body of your email please include your full name, date of birth, place of residence, email address and phone number. Please also include a short bio of no more than three sentences.

Starling is unable to offer payment to contributors. Copyright remains with the author. By submitting to Starling you also agree to be added to our mailing list, so that we may inform you of deadlines for future issues.

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Starling: Showcasing New Zealand’s Best Young Writers – to be edited by Louise Wallace & Marty Smith

Starling takes flight

Showcasing New Zealand’s Best Young Writers

A new opportunity for young writers has emerged today. Starling (www.starlingmag.com) is an online literary journal that will be published twice yearly, accepting poetry and prose from only New Zealanders under 25 years of age.

The founder and editor is poet, Louise Wallace, author of two collections of poetry and the current Robert Burns Fellow at the University of Otago. The journal will be an opportunity for young writers to showcase their work in a professional environment to a national audience. “There is nothing quite like this out there at the moment in New Zealand – certainly not with the national focus we hope to cultivate,” Wallace says. “It can be difficult for young writers to find publication with our more established print journals when they are competing for space with writers who have twenty or thirty or forty year’s experience. Starling levels the playing field.”

Wallace is keen to convey that the quality of the work will still be there. “Just because a writer is under a certain age, does not mean the quality of the work is any less. The journal has a high standard for acceptance and we are committed to presenting our contributors and their work seriously – in that way the submissions we receive and the writing we publish will be the best of the best.”

Starling is also focused on a community approach. Each issue of the journal will open with new work from an established New Zealand writer and will close with an interview with a person of note from the literary industry. Wallace says there are a few things that are crucial to the journal’s success. “The first is obviously getting young writers to submit. But we also need support from readers. We have a selection of posters available on our website that people can download and put up out in the real world to encourage submissions, and the website also allows supporters to sign up for email updates. Without these people taking that extra step, there will be no community.”

Submissions are now open for Issue 1, with a deadline of 20 October 2015, the issue to be published January 2016.

Wallace is joined by Co-editor, Francis Cooke, and Schools Coordinator, Marty Smith, who like Wallace, are graduates of the International Institute of Modern Letters MA programme. Cooke’s short stories have been published in a number of national journals, and Smith’s first collection of poems, Horse with Hat, won the Jesse Mackay Award for Best First Book of Poetry at the 2014 NZ Post Book awards, and was a finalist in the poetry category. Smith is also a high school teacher, and will work with Wallace to deliver the journal as a resource for New Zealand teachers in the classroom.