Persona Literary Magazine has become relatively unknown around Texas State over its 48 years of existence, but its newest staff members are determined to revitalize and increase its visibility on campus.
The staff members’ first step toward accomplishing that task was holding a launch party Sunday at Tantra Coffee House. There they handed the first issues of their magazine out to those in attendance.
“We decided to hold our first big event at Tantra because we knew it would be able to gain more exposure there,” said Christina Marroquin, the co-art and design editor for Persona. “One of our biggest goals is to have the magazine reach as many people as it possibly can, and for it to inspire others to create literary works of their own.”
The literary magazine is accepting all forms of artwork, whether they are short stories, drawings or screenplays. Students send in their creations, and staff members review submissions to determine what they will feature in the magazine.
“We don’t really have rigorous requirements for those who plan to submit their work to us,”Marroquin said. “Each student can submit up to five pieces of artwork, and we mainly just check the length of the pieces, make sure the content is appropriate and figure out what would work best for each issue.”
Some who attended the launch party showed off their artistic talents when they were given the opportunity to present personal works of poetry on stage.
“I’m really glad that we encouraged others to showcase their creative abilities,” Alix Scarborough, managing editor for Persona, said. “We really want this magazine to help influence others to be proud of their artwork and for them to see how talented they really are.”
While growing up, Scarborough was surrounded by a family that taught her to take advantage of an artistic predisposition. This teaching eventually inspired her to start writing her own poetry, which she still continues to do.
“I view poetry as something more than just a way to describe our feelings and emotions,” Scarborough said. “I really think that our work has the power to bring light on issues we all face. In the end, our writings can be something that can unite and bring us all together on common ground.”
Those who came to the event said they left with a better understanding for poetry and the magazine that so few had known about for the past four decades.
“All of the poems that were read tonight were brilliant in their own unique way,” said Alexandra Walker, mass communication freshman. “After looking through the magazine and meeting different members from the staff, I can tell that Persona will accomplish great things in the future. I’ll be looking out for their next issue.”