A journal of humanity and human experience
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We are thrilled to announce the winners of the 2024 BLR Literary Prizes!
As featured on NPR's Morning Edition
NPR’s Neda Ulaby reported on BLR‘s 20th Anniversary, featuring BLR Editor Danielle Ofri, along with author Celeste Ng. Long before Celeste Ng reached stratospheric popularity with Everything I Never Told You and Little Fires Everywhere, she was an emerging author, whose story “Girls, at Play” appeared in BLR and then won a Pushcart Prize.
Whiting Award Winner
BLR was awarded a Whiting Literary Magazine Prize for
“excellence in publishing, advocacy for writers, and a unique contribution to the strength of the overall literary community.”
BLR Off the Page
One day in those first months after her mother’s death, Cenem resolved to finally see Los Angeles. She’d spent the afternoon at one of the cheap matinees, seeing Casablanca yet again, and after, went directly to the used bookstore off Taksim Square in search of a copy of Baedecker’s California.
In honor of BLR’s 20th anniversary, we’ve invited editors past and present to offer reflections on the BLR’s founding and its evolution over two decades of publishing.
English has now become my primary language, although I experience it as a syllabic language, which I attribute to my brain being wired for Spanish.
Underneath is a body cast, my new ectoskeleton, my nautilus, crawled into, where I live now.
Think your lungs a forest cleared./
Your breath winged/
as if it had a better place to go
For every Sylvia Plath there was a William Carlos Williams; one was well-known for writing through the lens of her afflictions while the other’s legacy remains his imagery and not the psychotherapy he sought out late in life.
A trickster, the ear. Making us believe/
what eyes deny or hearts might doubt,
Galen Schram reads from his prize-wining story, “Tattoos” from BLR Issue 40.
After today’s rain/
all that’s left/
of the planets/
green and pink
Praise & Recognition
``With every issue, Bellevue Literary Review probes our understanding of the human body and mind in new ways. It is essential reading for anyone who deals with sickness and health, anyone interested in narrative medicine, anyone who simply needs a dose of deep grace and humanity.”
“The editors have produced a journal of uncommon literary quality.”
“I subscribe and receive literally hundreds of magazines every year. Of all those magazines, none stands out more than Bellevue Literary Review.”
“These two non-fiction pieces in BLR are powerful, honest, and heartrending. They lifted me up because of the truths released onto the pages. Both deal with problems our family is suffering through, so on a personal level, the authors are helping me grapple.”
“BLR's contents are at once practically instructive, and yet intangibly inspiring and utterly gripping. I can’t imagine my work as a writer, or a doctor, without it.”
“After reading it cover to cover, I came away walloped by the breadth and depth of the pain it highlights.”
“No human thing is more universal than illness, in all its permutations, and no literary publication holds more credibility on the subject than Bellevue Literary Review.”
“A kaleidoscope of creativity. . . The selections are unsentimental and often unpredictable.”
“What is most impressive about BLR, though, is how the editors can stretch their own boundaries.”
“Ask any healthcare worker, ask any patient who has come back from illness and fear, and you will hear stories that might change your life. That's what BLR offers.”
“BLR is loyal to its theme but never constrained by it, uncovering boundless tonal and narrative possibilities as it contemplates the body as a physical entity, probes the manifestation of mental illness, or reckons with how the racialized and gendered body is perceived.”
“BLR is open to many modes and styles of work; it has no house style except humanity (though excellent editing doesn't hurt either).”