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WHAT

The Mark Twain Annual will commemorate the sesquicentennial of Roughing It in 2022 with a special issue devoted to Mark Twain and the West.The Annual is seeking article-length submissions that examine Twain’s relationship to all aspects of the American West.

TOPICS

This broad scope allows for critical examinations of Twain’s work as:

  • Western regionalist writing
  • Twain and indigenous peoples
  • Twain and immigrant populations
  • Commentary on the American frontier
  • Twain and domestic travel
  • Twain’s Western journalism
  • The West as a shaping force on his development as an artist
  • The circle of writers Twain encountered out West and their continued relationship
  • Twain and contemporary Western writers

While Twain and the West has been the subject of numerous studies since the early twentieth century, this special issue seeks to explore what in recent years has become somewhat forgotten territory in Twain’s fictive and nonfictive writings.

In addition to being published in TheAnnual, authors will have the opportunity to be part of the Eighth Annual Quarry Farm Weekend Symposium sponsored by the Center for Mark Twain Studies in Elmira, New York. The symposium will be held in October 2021, one year prior to publication of The Annual.  The gathering will begin with a dinner on the Elmira College campus, followed by a keynote address. The symposium will continue throughout the next day with presentations and discussions in the tranquil atmosphere of Quarry Farm, a writing retreat reserved for scholars and writers working in the field of Mark Twain Studies, where breakfast, lunch, and dinner will also be served. Registrants will be invited back to Quarry Farm on Sunday morning to enjoy an autumnal breakfast and casual discussions. 

APPLICATION

Those interested should submit a 150-word proposal to Ben Click at baclick@smcm.edu by March 31, 2021. Proposals will be accepted on a rolling basis, and final decisions for symposium participation will be before July 1, 2021 when the symposium program needs to be finalized. Final manuscripts for publication in The Annual must be submitted by December 15, 2021.  Selected essays should be 4,000-8,000 words in length, but longer essays of more than 8,000 words will also be considered.


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