Local Literary Magazine Series: Stain’d
Denver’s literary scene is flourishing thanks to the passionate persistence of its communities. This vibrant community enables a diverse number of voices and modes for expression. One of them being Stain’d Literary and Arts Magazine, a venture that has grown considerably over the past three years with an active community of workshop participants, open mic readers and attendees; their magazines are now distributed and sold across the country! I got in touch with Delia, the co-founder of Stain’d, to get further insight into their story and values.
Where did Stain’d get its origins? Who and What makes up Stain’d?
Stain’d got started over the summer of 2015. My Co-Founder Noah Kaplan and I were discussing the need for art spaces that are brave and unashamed and which highlight perspectives that typically have gone unseen and unheard. We launched our online magazine shortly after and have been growing wildly since. Stain’d currently consists of a governing board, a community advisory board, a team of interns and volunteers, amounting to around 20 people. We are absolutely run on the energy and artistry behind every writer, musician, photographer, artist we’ve worked with over the years. With this community, and the support of so many throughout Denver and across the nation, we have been able to produce a twice annual visual and literary arts print publication. Stain’d Arts is also the curator of a popular ongoing series of literary/arts events, including:
- A monthly open-mic at Whittier cafe featuring an upcoming local artist/writer
- A twice annual storytelling event at the Mercury in collaboration with Soul Stories
- A summer reading series which elevates the work of emerging artists
- A free weekly literary/arts critique group that meets at Hooked on Colfax
- Workshop offerings which create affordable access to literary/arts skills for the community
Tell us about your name: Stain’d. How was this name chosen? How does the name represent the creative purpose and reading experience of the online platform and printed literary journal?
The name Stain’d truthfully came about a bit randomly from a six word story. It has since become a powerful lens through which we source and select the work we curate. Our name Stain’d bloomed into the idea of celebrating the smudged line between right and wrong, looking for the nontraditional beauty within our faults, seeking the unfamiliar and the unusual in all we do. Though stains may be uncomfortably obvious, it is those which are more nuanced, more obscure that ultimately contain an undeniably beautiful depth to them, and which offer insight into our shared humanity.
What are a few of your ongoing projects? Are there any current open calls for submissions?
We currently have three calls for submissions! One is for a poetry anthology we are working on. There is no theme beyond that of Stain’d, and all that we stand for. The second is for our online magazine. We are working on some very exciting renovations to how we’ve run this space and are converting content into a digital publication. The first few issues will be a combination of pieces already accepted online and those collected through said call for submissions. The last is a contest for a logo design. We are reaching out to our visual community to come up with a logo for us! Submissions should draw from both our mission statement and our about us statement to come up with an image that captures our vision and our story.
Stay tuned for a call for submissions for our print publication (Volume IV) in the next month or so.
What avenues are available for Denverites to participate and support Stain’d?
There are SO many ways to get involved with Stain’d. Whether that is reading the work we publish, attending one of our many community events (details found on website, facebook or in our email newsletter), volunteering your time and energy, or becoming a part of our board (an option on Patreon). Another way of getting involved and supporting the work we do is by financially supporting us. We will be having a HouseFest Fundraiser on September 22nd, and always accept donations through our PayPal account.