‘Bandit Fiction’: A Digital Trip to the Library
By Shannon Pendleton
Edited by Lizzie Alblas
This post is written by a member of The Letters Page team, who would like to recommend to fans of our work another journal which you may enjoy reading.
As a lover of everything literary, I grew up on regular weekend visits to the local library. Some of my fondest childhood memories feature my sisters and I, sleepy-eyed on a Saturday morning, our mum having just let us loose amongst the bookshelves, before convening in a quiet spot at the back of the building to devour our findings. Consequently, something I find special the literary journal Bandit Fiction is how everything published by them is free to read. This not-for-profit organisation was founded in 2017 and is run by volunteers alone. Just like during those anticipated library visits, those who find themselves strolling through the digital bookshelves of Bandit Fiction will be able to access years-worth of content. Bandit Fiction has reimagined the wide-eyed years of childhood-reading through its accessible use of a digital publishing space.
Furthermore, Bandit Fiction uses its far-reaching platform to support causes important to them. This October, Reclaim: An Anthology of Women’s Lives will be released, a special publication created in response to the devastating news that Sarah Everard, a 33-year-old woman from Brixton, had been murdered by a police officer in March 2021. Women throughout the country united in their shared grief, enraged and exhausted as to how women and girls are treated in the UK and the world over. When I heard about this project, I was thankful that a publication as influential as Bandit Fiction was taking women’s issues seriously. This project calls for women-identifying writers only, in an effort to amplify female voices, and aims to create a digital space where themes such as consent, abuse, and healing can be fully explored. All proceedings produced by the publication will be donated to women-centred charities, including Rosa UK, Women’s Aid UK, and Write Girl.
Finally, Bandit Fiction is a journal that truly cares for the interests of their contributors. I know as much as anybody how disappointing it can be to submit a piece of work to a publication and receive news that it has not been selected. However, this journal ensures these contributors offers a free feedback service to those who miss out on seeing their work publicised. This increases their chances of having future work published.
Overall, Bandit Fiction is a beautiful journal to fall in love with if you, too, spent your childhood years curled up in the local library.
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