‘An Indian gothic drag art performance’ – A photo essay feat. Patruni Chinanda Sastry | by Saumya Kalia | LGBTQ+ (Vol I) – Issue 35

Where patriarchy ends, expression begins: An Indian gothic drag art performance

The lore of vishkanya is intoxicating in its effect on the Indian cultural discourse. The “poisonous maiden”, enrobed in myth and legend, carries an ominous mark. It is a secret that hangs heavy in the air; neither fully embraced, nor completely eschewed. It passes on in grim looks, exchanged as demure whispers, understood as cautionary tales in traditional set-ups. Like all things clandestine, its lure indulges social dogmas and inspires a web of fancy. 

But for Patruni Chinanda Sastry, the lure doesn’t warrant loyalty to the myth. The 28-year-old artist is known for many things: dancing, drag art, LGBTQI+ activism. Which means that he knows exactly how to turn the prism outwards. If anything, he believes, the myth demands a closer look, a dissection, a complete evisceration if needed. 

His recent performance, VisssKanya, does exactly that. It is a play on the legend, the tradition of witch-shaming, and the force of patriarchy that binds it all. Along with Sajiv Palasa, he mixes it with the contours of drag art and gothic culture, albeit within the Indian sensibility. Captured by Hyderabad-based photographer Manab Das, what unravels is a spectre of delirium, defiance, and delusionment. 

Pictures Credits : Manab Das and Artist : Patruni Sastry

Time stands still in the land that vacillates between tradition and modernity. The parable of vishkanya has evolved but never once betrayed the violence, lethality, and deviousness the female figure is understood to possess. The most recent figuration came in the form of a Bengali actor politically and socially indicted. Rhea Chakraborty’s role in Sushant Singh Rajput’s suicide was sold as witchcraft on television screens; anchors swearing by occult forces at play. The woman was unwittingly vilified to preserve the presumed innocence of the man. 

This is in line with India’s sordid history of witch-shaming — labelling norm-defying, often independent women as “daayan” or “chudail”. Witch shaming in India is a departure from Shakespearian witches and their green faces and black robes. Here, the daayan or chudail was marked by her association to black magic or the tropes of jaadu-tona. Progressive or independent women were relegated to be these anomalies, devious figures, sinister witches. 

Pictures Credits : Manab Das | Artists : Patruni Sastry and Sajiv Pasala 

This characterisation was where gothic drag art found the need to intervene in the dominant narrative. Somewhere between their transgression and expression was a mirror that could reflect the reality of patriarchal forces at play. Two figures headline this performance: one played by PCS in a vivid red-and-black saree donning the feminine figure, with Palasa playing the masculine entity. The two bodies continue to pose with constant contact without a break, unlike other photo shoots.

In two hours, their progression reveals the notoriety at play. PCS, dressed as a woman in the garb and jewelry of a traditional woman, was the seductive, poisonous “vissskanya”. The man was swayed, cajoled, and his mouth strapped shut. The slurring ‘s’ uncomfortably hung in the air, as if the passage of utterance might inspire introspection. 

Traditional understanding of goth in rural areas manifests through stories of witches, black magic, vishkanyas. So it was imperative that the gothic anchored the performance here, but without the pre-conceptions it remains shackled with. 

Pictures Credits : Manab Das | Artist : Sajiv Pasala 

PCS explains how gothic culture was growing as a counterpart to gothic music and punk trends; a lifestyle being developed from a music setting. It is a way of living, and not restricted to fanciful notions it is often confused with. Goth in drag came to grow in prominence in western drag culture — PCS hat tips to artists like Sharon Needles who would dress in the widely-accepted black-and-white binary, a western goth staple.

Is gothic an often-used medium for drag artists? Now more than ever. As creativity thrived, drag artists went ahead and looked for inspiration from the society they lived in. Goth culture was resounding with gender fluidity — a western figure titles emos muffled the gendered aspects of play. Gothic drag matched the non-conformity with artful performances. 

But Vissskanya is again a departure from the western gothic drag portrayal — the white is quickly replaced by the red. Feedback from some sections railed in how the absence of white didn’t make it gothic enough. But for the artists, it was more important to do justice to the context behind the presentation. The red carried a powerful message to a patriarchal set-up, especially when used as a tool of subversion.

The clarion call thus becomes evident: “Even men are witches, I am just one”, the artists explain.  With this, the performance shirks off taboos and time-honoured beliefs: a headstrong woman is not a witch, and witchcraft deserved a different treatment. This was a chance to recalibrate morality within tradition.

Pictures Credits : Manab Das | Artists : Patruni Sastry and Sajiv Pasala 

To take it a step further, the performance deludes the gender binary as is widely understood. There stands the traditional alpha, gazing at the seductive beta. But a closer look shows the feminine figure, adorned with jewelry, with a mustache. Gender permeates through the performance, pushing forth forces of fluidity.

The ring that sat on the man’s finger in the previous picture now binds his mouth shut. This was the man who had the power to oppress the feminine voice, but the progression of the performance uses the ring as a symbol. The imagery interrogates male privilege and puts it into perspective. There is something about a man ceasing his railing defence of “not all men” that paves way for reflection. 

In another image, PCS dressed as a woman bites the glorious chain of patriarchy and oppression.  It then disrupts the traditional set-up and encourages conversation around patriarchy, as documented from the lens of the oppressed. Myths may continue to be weaved by gatekeepers of traditions and values, but for PCS these time-honoured traditions hold little weight especially when times keep changing.

Pictures Credits : Manab Das | Artists : Patruni Sastry and Sajiv Pasala 

Drag art transcends labels and stereotypes. It throws caution to the wind in its attempt to transgress and create. So it’s only natural that it adapts and grows into an entity of its own, beyond the restrictions of stage. The photo performance grew out of a desire to unify the drag diaspora during these times; and like all art eclipsing through a pandemic, it reached its audience virtually. 

Flair and flamboyance, markers of most drag performances, run in abundance through the performance. But more importantly, it is true to its form. As a drag artist, PCS’s performing philosophy lies in the transparent reign of ‘tranimal drag’. Put simply, it is the idea that drag can be created out of anything. You enrobe and adorn what is in sight; in this case, the red saree, strings of jewellery, and dabs of rouge are what PCS plays with. The vision has to fit the elements, not the other way round. There is a lot of creative freedom in making something which can be found anywhere — an idea that resonates in the times of a pandemic. This approach of drag made fashion and performance accessible to people sitting at home. 

Pictures Credits : Manab Das | Artists : Patruni Sastry

This does two things, One, it caricatures art into a more inclusive mould. Art, PCS explains, has often governed conversations around beauty and romance. Even drag art has to a certain extent dictated ideas about how women should look, how they should dress, how long nails have to be in order to replicate the woman. Cross-dressing was in turn enabling stereotypes — a cycle that needed disruption. With tranimal, drag artists can put multiple things on their face and create a look that aligns best with their identity.

And two, it unravels the idea of privilege and the fashion benchmarks accompanying it. Tranimal doesn’t invest money in clothes or cosmetics, it just makes do. It juxtaposes the costly with the cheap, the pedestrian with the luxurious. Everything is made accessible on one body form and mixed together. The audience then needs to question and wonder what is what, and the aesthetics of privilege are abandoned for the time being.

Drag art in itself is intersectional — involving theatre, music, dance whatever suits the whim of the artist. Dance has been PCS’s preferred form of expression. He was five when he saw the Tamil movie Padayappan where the heroine was angry because she was rejected by the hero. In fury, she screams loudly and dances. This was the kind of implication he grew up with — whenever you’re angry you’ve to scream loudly, his five-year-old understanding dictated, and only then will people take you seriously. 

Pictures Credits : Manab Das | Artists : Patruni Sastry and Sajiv Pasala 

He later learned Bharatnatyam, Kuchipudi, Odishi, and Buto, a Japanese art form. To balance this artistic flight, he trained to be a full-time engineer who now works in the poetic city of Hyderabad. 

It soon became a part of his expression, where the spectrum of emotion oftentimes translated into dance. He paced with agility, and soon came to view the art form through the lens of drag. He finally found the vocabulary — a visual language — to distill ideas and explore issues of identity.

In many of his performances, he asks audience members to pull out chits out of a jar with each one having a gender or sexual label written on it. He then presents it for the individual sensibility. That was the only way for him that stood a chance to reach out to people and denude the richness of gender and sexuality for a more accepting audience. If a picture is worth a thousand words, one can only wonder how potent a moving performance can be.

PCS describes himself as an expressionist dance, and one has to merely gleen through to see strokes of the German movement across his body of work. It is the idea of creating oneself, reproducing a feeling or thought for public spectacle that ushers through. The visuality has since carved his identity as an activist, as he established pieces that were relevant and political in nature. Commentaries on same-sex marriage, equality, the MeToo movement all found space in his oeuvre that has went on to inspire many and initiative conversation. 

Pictures Credits : Manab Das | Artists : Patruni Sastry and Sajiv Pasala 

Drag art for performers like him became a conduit for a thriving socio-cultural discourse around the LGBTQ+ community. In their transgression is an abundance of expression often tucked away from the mainstream. People have innumerable pre-conceptions and often dismiss it for sensuality or vulgarity. There are assumption that you have to be gay or transgender to participate, or the stigmatisation of drag queens as ‘hijras’ (eunuchs). The acceptance of drag thus endures under a spectre of shame and unacceptability. 

But like other drag artists, PCS is no friend to conformity. He didn’t find it necessary to dwell on mythology or take stories in the way they came. Traditions were accepted as much as they were rejected. This becomes evident in his understanding of art: the abstract concept is like water which takes on the shape of the jar it flows into. Famous drag queen RuPaul’s words quickly ring in resonance: we’re all born naked and the rest is drag. Art, for him, will always exist as an asexual entity that can be moulded into any gender identity. 

He adopted the stage name S.A.S, an acronym that would come to undergird his body of work. It stands for “Suffocated. Art. Specimen.” Suffocated, for the plurality of expression that strokes within him. And specimen — of art —  to distance himself from gender labels. It is the fluidity of being that holds his confidence and loyalty.

What would it take to move the dial forward on drag culture, gender, and sexuality? Conversation. Artists like PCS are inching close to an answer. Blogs like Dragvanti, that delves into Indian drag in particular, are an instructive medium for knowledge. 

Pictures Credits : Manab Das | Artists : Patruni Sastry

As long as we’re fighting patriarchy, we’re also fighting expression that enables it. The photo performance, along with his other work, criticises the binaries of masculinity and femininity. PCS’s art probes the normative theories of gender and sexuality, and exists in the visual realm. In fact, it insists on creating a performative experience. How do you explain the spectrum of gender or sexual orientation in a way that people understand it? Why don’t we go ahead and dance on it instead of talking about it, PCS thought. And that’s exactly what he continues to do.

He negotiates with his performance on two fronts: one, as an artist, who must do justice to an evolving creative express; and two, as a member of India’s vibrant drag community that fights for a place in the cultural tapestry. Art and activists bind PCS’s work; each breathing a life into him: free, fluid, and transcendent.


Saumya Kalia is a journalist and writer. Most days she is proud to be a product of her times; other days she finds a deep hankering to move to the rhythm of the good-old-days. Her tryst with time inspires her to explore life and living, as it cuts across socio-cultural periods. She swears by coffee, good literature, and everything popular culture. She mostly lives out of suitcases and currently finds base in Mumbai. 

Read more:

LGBTQ+ Vol 1 – Issue 35 released.

Submissions now open for Vol 2 of the series, scheduled to release in 2021. (Art, reviews, fiction, poetry, essays, and more)

Solicited entries are paid. Submission details here.

Top Middle Eastern Literary Magazines to submit your Creative Writing to.

 

Hello!

Here is a new list of magazines to submit your work!

We, at The Bombay Review have a special focus on emerging and established writing from the Middle Eastern region. So if you are from or write about the region, and wish to have your work published with us, submit away! Our themed editions, published or forthcoming are on: Iran, Iraq, Palestine, Israel, and Egypt. While submissions for these open regularly, we sure look for great writing all year round. Details below, along with the list of other literary journals/magazines. We are constantly working to update this list, if you know of a publication that can be here, drop a comment below. The list is in no particular order.

–  Editor, The Bombay Review



The Bombay Review
Year established: 2014
Published from: New York City & Mumbai
Genres: Fiction, Poetry, Essays, Art, Reviews, Interviews, Culture pieces
Submission period: All year
Type: Online + Print
Website | Instagram | Facebook
Submission fee: None
Payment: Ranges from Nil to $50
Editors: Kaartikeya Bajpai | Rochelle Potkar



13 LITERARY MAGAZINES
The Middle East
(English/Bilingual)
Short fiction, poetry, translations, reviews, screenplays, essays, and more.

The Bosphorus Review Of BooksThe Bosphorus Review of Books

Year established: 2017
Published from: Istanbul, Turkey
Genres: Fiction, Non-fiction, Poetry, Book reviews
Submission period: All year
Type: Digital
Website | Instagram | Facebook
Submission fee: Nil
Payment: Nil
Editor: Luke Frostick and Thomas Parker


new-journal

Rowayat

Year established: 2013
Published from: Egypt & Kent, United Kingdom
Genres: Short fiction, Flash fiction, Poetry
Submission period: All year
Type: Digital + Print
Website | Facebook
Submission fee: Nil
Payment: Nil
Editor: Sherine ElBanhawy


Sukoon

Year established: 2013
Published from: Dubai, UAE
Genres: Poetry, Short fiction, Essays
Submission period: All year
Type: Digital
Website | Facebook
Submission fee: Nil
Payment: Nil
Editor: Rewa Zeinati


Sail

Year established: 2010
Published from: Dubai, UAE
Genres: Articles
Submission period: All year
Type: Digital
Website | Instagram | Facebook
Submission fee: Nil
Payment: Nil
Editor: Iman Ben Chaibah 


ArabLit Quartlerly

Year established: 2018
Published from: Unknown
Genres: Poetry, Fiction, Essays
Submission period: Rolling basis
Type: Digital + Print
Website | Instagram | Facebook
Submission fee: Nil
Payment: Nil to $500
Editor: M Lynx Qualey


Pin by IAA Libraries on Books from Around the World | Literature ...Banipal

Year established: 1998
Published from: London, UK
Genres: Translations
Submission period: All year
Type: Digital + Print
Website | Facebook
Submission fee: Nil
Payment: Nil
Editor: Margaret Obank


Jahanamiya

Year established: 2017
Published from: Saudi Arabia, Michigan, USA
Genres: Poetry, Fiction, and Non-fiction writing
Submission period: Rolling basis
Type: Digital
Website | Instagram | Facebook
Submission fee: Nil
Payment: Nil
Editor: Ahd Niazy


Al Jadid Magazine

Year established: 1995
Published from: California, USA
Genres: Essays, Features, Reviews, Interviews, Translations
Submission period: All year
Type: Digital + Print
Website | Facebook
Submission fee: Nil
Payment: Nil
Editor: Elie Chalala


Rusted Radishes

  • Year established: 2011
  • Published from: Beirut, Lebanon
  • Genres: Comics, Artwork, Translations, Fiction, Creative nonfiction, Poetry
  • Submission period: All year
  • Type: Digital
  • Website | Instagram | Facebook
  • Submission fee: Nil
  • Payment: Nil
  • Editor: Rima Rantisi

Untitled design (1)Pars Times

Year established: 2002
Published from: Iran
Genres: Interviews, Articles, Poetry, Short fiction
Submission period: All year
Type: Digital
Website | Facebook
Submission fee: Nil
Payment: Nil
Editor: Unknown


Parsagon

Year established: 2013
Published from: Iran
Genres: Poetry, Fiction, Nonfiction, Drama
Submission period: All year
Type: Digital
Website | Facebook
Submission fee: Nil
Payment: Nil
Editor: Unknown


Al-Madaniya

Year established: 2018
Published from: Yemen
Genres: Essays, Short fiction, Nonfiction
Submission period: All year
Type: Digital
Website | Facebook
Submission fee: Nil
Payment: Nil
Editor: Hamza Shiban


The Istanbul Review

Year established: 2014
Published from: Istanbul, Turkey
Genres: Poetry, Fiction
Submission period: All year
Type: Digital
Website | Facebook
Submission fee: Nil
Payment: Nil
Editor: Hande Zapsu Watt


Top Indian/Asian Literary Magazines to submit your Creative Writing to.

Literary magazines are a catalyst to good publishing in any country, functioning as a parallel industry to traditional book publishing. A rich literary magazine landscape comments on writing being taken seriously, and also nurtures a reading market for aspiring writers. Stimulating intellectual conversations, niche catering, lending support to Creative Writing programs, and providing a platform to be heard, or well, read; surround the larger role of magazines.

In India, South Asia, Africa and certain parts of the world,  literary magazines may have another role to play. Support writing careers. The magazines are a pillar to graduates of literature, passionate readers, bibliophiles, hobbyists; lending them the shoulder to spring start a probable writing career. 

Here, today, we have curated a list of our favorite literary magazines of Indian/Asian origin, publishing steadily for a couple of years. Persons of words in this part of the world, or anywhere else, go ahead and submit your creative writing.

We, The Bombay Review, are also always open to reading your work, publishing your work, and commending your work. Details below.

By Team TBR

The Bombay Review
Year established: 2014
Published from: New York City & Mumbai
Genres: Fiction, Poetry, Essays, Art, Reviews, Interviews, Culture pieces
Submission period: All year
Type: Online + Print
Website | Instagram | Facebook
Submission fee: None
Payment: upto $50 for solicited entries
Editors: Kaartikeya Bajpai | Rochelle Potkar


30 
LITERARY MAGAZINES
(Established more than 5 years ago, as of 2020)
Short fiction, poetry, translations, reviews, screenplays, essays, and more.

Indian Literature: Sahitya Academy

  • Year established: 1954
  • Published from: New Delhi, India
  • Genres: Poetry, short fiction in English translation and English, critical articles
  • Submission period: All year
  • Type: Digital + print
  • Website
  • Submission fee: None
  • Payment: None
  • Editor: Dr. A. J. Thomas

Asymptote Journal

  • Year established: 2015
  • Published from: Taiwan
  • Genres: Unpublished translated poetry, fiction, nonfiction and drama; original English-language nonfiction; visual art
  • Submission period: All year
  • Type: Digital
  • Website 
  • Submission fee: None
  • Payment: None
  • Editor: Lee Yew Leong

Jaggery Lit

  • Year established: 2013
  • Published from: India
  • Genres: Fiction, poetry, essays, art, reviews
  • Submission period: May 1 to July 1
  • Type: Digital
  • Website 
  • Submission fee: $25/piece
  • Payment: $100 for fiction, $25 for nonfiction/poetry/art/reviews
  • Editor: Anu Mahadev

Cha: An Asian Literary Journal (Could be defunct)

  • Year established: 2007
  • Published from: Hong Kong + London, UK
  • Genres: Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction
  • Submission period: All year
  • Type: Digital
  • Website
  • Submission fee: None
  • Payment: None
  • Editor: Tammy Ho Lai-Ming

Spark Magazine

  • Year established: 2010
  • Published from: India
  • Genres: Short fiction, art
  • Submission period: On a break, currently not accepting submissions
  • Type: Digital
  • Website
  • Submission fee: None
  • Payment: None
  • Editors: Anupama Krishnakumar and Vani Viswanathan

The Indian Quarterly

  • Year established: 2013
  • Published from: Mumbai, India
  • Genres: Essays, features, essay-reviews, photo-essays, travelogue, poetry, fiction
  • Submission period: All year
  • Type: Print + Digital
  • Website 
  • Submission fee: None
  • Payment: None
  • Editor: Unknown

Reading Hour

  • Year established: 2011
  • Published from: Bangalore, India
  • Genres: Short fiction, poetry, book reviews
  • Submission period: All year
  • Type: Print + Digital
  • Website 
  • Submission fee: None
  • Payment: None
  • Editor: Unknown 

eFiction India

  • Year established: 2013
  • Published from: Gurgaon, India
  • Genres: Essays, fiction, poetry, art and criticism, interviews, book reviews
  • Submission period: All year
  • Type: Digital
  • Website
  • Submission fee: None
  • Payment: None
  • Editor: Nikhil Sharda

The Bangalore Review

  • Year established: 2013
  • Published from: Bangalore, India
  • Genres: Fiction, creative non-fiction, translations, essays
  • Submission period: All year
  • Type: Digital
  • Website 
  • Submission fee: $3
  • Payment: None
  • Editor: Suhail Rasheed

Himal South Asian Mag

  • Year established: 1987
  • Published from: Colombo, Sri Lanka
  • Genres: Long-form reportage, political analysis, essays and opinion, interviews, photo essays, reviews, fiction
  • Submission period: All year
  • Type: Digital
  • Website 
  • Submission fee: None
  • Payment: USD 100-150
  • Editors: Kanak Mani Dixit

 Muse India

  • Year established: 2004
  • Published from: Secunderabad, Telangana, India
  • Genres: Poetry, short fiction, essays, conversations with writers, book reviews
  • Submission period: All year
  • Type: Digital
  • Website
  • Submission fee: None
  • Payment: None
  • Editor: Atreya Sarma U

Helter Skelter

  • Year established: 2010
  • Published from: Mumbai
  • Genres: Helter Skelter Anthology of New Writing: Short fiction, poetry
  • Submission period: Varies, usually November to January
  • Type: Digital
  • Website 
  • Submission fee: None
  • Payment: None
  • Editor: Arun Kale

The Alipore Post

  • Year established: 2015
  • Published from: Unknown
  • Genres: Poetry, art, photography, comics, interviews, prose
  • Submission period: Check website
  • Type: Digital
  • Website
  • Submission fee:
  • Payment:
  • Editor: Rohini Kejriwal

Open Road Review: (To be verified)

  • Year established: 2011
  • Published from: New Delhi, India
  • Genres: Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction
  • Submission period: All year
  • Type: Digital
  • Website
  • Submission fee: None
  • Payment: None
  • Editor: Kulpreet Yadav

Cafe Dissensus

  • Year established: 2013
  • Published from: New York City, USA
  • Genres: Audio-visual (interviews, conversations), Political articles/essays, Photo essays
  • Submission period: All year
  • Type: Online
  • Website
  • Submission fee: None
  • Payment: None
  • Editors: Mary Ann Chacko, Mosarrap Hossain Khan

Kitaab

  • Year established: 2013
  • Published from: Singapore
  • Genres: Short Stories, Essays on literary criticism, Poetry, Non-fiction – Travelogues, Memoirs, Personal essays, Book Reviews, Author Interviews
  • Submission period: All year
  • Type: Digital
  • Website
  • Submission fee: None
  • Payment: None
  • Editor: Zafar Anjum

Wasafiri

  • Year established: 1984
  • Published from: London, UK
  • Genres: Articles, essays, journalistic prose, short fiction and poetry 
  • Submission period: October onwards
  • Type: Digital + print
  • Website
  • Submission fee: None
  • Payment: None
  • Editor: Malachi McIntosh

The Bombay Literary Magazine

  • Year established: 2013
  • Published from: Unknown
  • Genres: Fiction, poetry
  • Submission period: Varies, currently closed
  • Type: Digital
  • Website
  • Submission fee: None
  • Payment: Nil
  • Editor – Tanuj Solanki

The Mithila Review

  • Year established: 2016
  • Published from: Delhi, India
  • Genres: Fiction, poetry, non-fiction
  • Submission period: Varies, updates on website. Currently open for poetry, closed for fiction (opens August 2020)
  • Type: Digital + print
  • Website
  • Submission fee: None
  • Payment: Nil to $10 for original poetry, essays, flash stories; $50 for original stories
  • Editor: Salik Shah

Nether (To be verified)

  • Year established: 2009
  • Published from: India
  • Genres: Fiction, poetry, art, photography
  • Submission period: All year
  • Type: Digital (quarterly) + Print (annual)
  • Website 
  • Submission fee: None
  • Payment: None
  • Editor: Avinab Datta-Areng

Vayavya (To be verified)

  • Year established: 2011, first published in 2013
  • Published from: India
  • Genres: Poetry, prose on poetry, interviews
  • Submission period: All year
  • Type: Digital
  • Website
  • Submission fee: None
  • Payment: None
  • Editor: Mihir Vatsa

The Little Magazine (To be verified)

  • Year established: 2001
  • Published from: India
  • Genres: Essays, fiction, poetry, novellas, film and theatre scripts
  • Submission period: All year
  • Type: Digital
  • Website
  • Submission fee: None
  • Payment: None
  • Editor: Antara Dev Sen, Pratik Kanjilal

Setu Billingual

  • Year established: 2016
  • Published from: Pittsburgh, USA
  • Genres: Research articles, book reviews, interviews, poems and short fiction
  • Submission period:
  • Type: Digital
  • Website
  • Submission fee: None
  • Payment: None
  • Editor: Anurag Sharma, Sunil Sharma

The Punch Magazine (formerly Byword)

  • Year established: 2016 (formerly Byword)
  • Published from: India
  • Genres: Articles (Non-fiction, Poetry, Interviews), Reviews, Photos, Videos, Fiction
  • Submission period: All year
  • Type: Online
  • Website 
  • Submission fee: Small donations are welcome
  • Payment: None
  • Editor: Shireen Quadri

The Aleph Review

  • Year established: 2017
  • Published from: Pakistan
  • Genres: Prose, poetry
  • Submission period: January to July
  • Type: Digital + print
  • Website 
  • Submission fee: None
  • Payment: None
  • Editor: Mehvash Amin

The Missing Slate:

  • Year established: 2010
  • Published from: Pakistan
  • Genres: Poetry, fiction, non-fiction, photography, visual arts
  • Submission period: All year
  • Type: Digital + print
  • Website 
  • Submission fee: None
  • Payment: None
  • Editor: Moeed Tariq, Noah Klein

Out of Print

  • Year established: 2010
  • Published from: Mumbai, India
  • Genres: Fiction
  • Submission period: All year
  • Type: Digital
  • Website
  • Submission fee: None
  • Payment: None
  • Editor: Indira Chandrasekhar

Anak Sastra

  • Year established: 2010
  • Published from: Florida, USA
  • Genres: Short fiction, creative nonfiction, comics, poems, book reviews 
  • Submission period: All year
  • Type: Digital
  • Website
  • Submission fee: None
  • Payment: None
  • Editor: Kris Williamson

The Asian American Literary Review (Under construction)

  • Year established: 2009
  • Published from: USA
  • Genres: Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction
  • Submission period: Jun 1 to Aug 31
  • Type: Digital
  • Website Currently under construction
  • Submission fee: None
  • Payment: Contributor copies only
  • Editor: Lawrence-Minh Bὺi Davis and Gerald Maa

If we have missed out any literary magazine, which we surely have, please comment below with details and we will take a look. Do note, that we are not considering literary magazines/journals which are less than 3-5 years old.

The above list in not in any particular order.

Call for The Booker Prize Winners’ Reviews

TO PITCH OUR EDITORIAL BOARD

The Bombay Review, ambitiously so, plans to review all the Booker Prize winners, since 1968 when the Prize was first constituted. We welcome review pitches from professional and freelance writers, journalists, columnists, and book lovers. All submissions must be exclusive, and previously unpublished. To review a book for us, please send us a pitch between 200 and 500 words.

In case a book is not available with you, we will send you a copy if you are selected to write the piece.

Send an email to thebombayreview@gmail.com. The subject line of the mail should be – ‘Book Review : Book Name : Your Name’.

We are starting the reviews section with The Booker Prize winners, but we would love to have pitches for other books as well.

Due to the volume of submissions, we can only respond to those of interest.


 

PLease make sure to include the following information at the top of your pitch:

*Book(s) and/or writer(s) you would like to discuss in your piece
*Approximate word count
*Your bio
*Two relevant writing samples, preferably of reviews.
*Availability of the book with you. (Please note that we will be sending you books only in select cases)

You are encouraged to briefly explain any critical, historical context you consider relevant apart from the reason you picked the particular book. 


 

TO PUBLISHERS AND AUTHORS (for books not in our list)

To have your book considered for review, send a pitch to thebombayreview@gmail.com; copies of books will be asked of you. This is a paid service. You can mail us for a quote.


ABOUT THE BOOKER PRIZE

The Booker Prize for Fiction, formerly known as the Booker–McConnell Prize (1969–2001) and the Man Booker Prize (2002–2019), is a literary prize awarded each year for the best original novel written in the English language and published in the United Kingdom. The winner of the Booker Prize is generally assured international renown and success; therefore, the prize is of great significance for the book trade. From its inception, only novels written by Commonwealth, Irish, and South African (and later Zimbabwean) citizens were eligible to receive the prize; in 2014 it was widened to any English-language novel—a change that proved controversial.

A high-profile literary award in British culture, the Booker Prize is greeted with anticipation and fanfare. It is also a mark of distinction for authors to be selected for inclusion in the shortlist or even to be nominated for the “longlist”.


 

The Complete List of Man Booker Winners

 

2018
Milkman
by Anna Burns
United Kingdom / Northern Ireland

 

2017
Lincoln in the Bardo
by George Saunders
United States

 

2016
The Sellout
by Paul Beatty
United States

 

2015
A Brief History of Seven Killings
by Marlon James
Jamaica

 

2014
The Narrow Road to the Deep North
by Richard Flanagan
Australia

 

2013
The Luminaries
by Eleanor Catton
Canada / New Zealand

 

2012
Bring Up The Bodies
by Hilary Mantel
United Kingdom

 

2011
The Sense of an Ending
by Julian Barnes
United Kingdom

 

2010
The Finkler Question
by Howard Jacobson
United Kingdom

 

2009
Wolf Hall
by Hilary Mantel
United Kingdom

 

2008
The White Tiger
by Aravind Adiga
India

 

2007
The Gathering
by Anne Enright
Ireland

 

2006
The Inheritance of Loss
by Kiran Desai
India

 

2005
The Sea
by John Banville
Ireland

 

2004
The Line of Beauty
by Allan Hollinghurst
United Kingdom

 

2003
Vernon God Little
by DBC Pierre
Australia

 

2002
Life of Pi
by Yann Martel
Canada

 

2001
True History of the Kelly Gang
by Peter Carey
Australia

 

2000
The Blind Assassin
by Margaret Atwood
Canada

 

1999
Disgrace
by J. M. Coetzee
South Africa

 

1998
Amsterdam
by Ian McEwan
United Kingdom

 

1997
The God of Small Things
by Arundhati Roy
India

 

1996
Last Orders
by Graham Swift
United Kingdom

 

1995
The Ghost Road
by Pat Barker
United Kingdom

 

1994
How Late It Was, How Late
by James Kelman
United Kingdom

 

1993
Paddy Clarke Ha Ha Ha
by Roddy Doyle
Ireland

 

1992
Sacred Hunger
by Barry Unsworth
United Kingdom
and*
The English Patient
by Michael Ondaatje
Canada / Sri Lanka

 

1991
The Famished Road
by Ben Okri
Nigeria

 

1990
Possession
by A. S. Byatt
United Kingdom

 

1989
The Remains of the Day
by Kazuo Ishiguro
United Kingdom / Japan

 

1988
Oscar and Lucinda
by Peter Carey
Australia

 

1987
Moon Tiger
by Penelope Lively
United Kingdom

 

1986
The Old Devils
by Kingsley Amis
United Kingdom

 

1985
The Bone People
by Keri Hulme
New Zealand

 

1984
Hotel du Lac
by Anita Brookner
United Kingdom

 

1983
Life & Times of Michael K
by J. M. Coetzee
South Africa

 

1982
Schindler’s Ark
by Thomas Keneally
Australia

 

1981
Midnight’s Children
by Salman Rushdie
United Kingdom / India

 

1980
Rites of Passage
by William Golding
United Kingdom

 

1979
Offshore
by Penelope Fitzgerald
United Kingdom

 

1978
The Sea, The Sea
by Iris Murdoch
Ireland / United Kingdom

 

1977
Staying On
by Paul Scott
United Kingdom

 

1976
Saville
by David Storey
United Kingdom

 

1975
Heat and Dust
by Ruth Prawer Jhabvala
United Kingdom / Germany

 

1974
The Conservationist
by Nadine Gordimer
South Africa
and*
Holiday
by Stanley Middleton
United Kingdom

 

1973
The Siege of Krishnapur
by J.G. Farrell
United Kingdom / Ireland

 

1972
G.
by John Berger
United Kingdom

 

1971
In a Free State (short story)**
by V. S. Naipaul
United Kingdom / Trinidad and Tobago

 

1970***
Troubles
by J. G. Farrell
United Kingdom / Ireland

 

1970
The Elected Member
by Bernice Rubens
United Kingdom

 

1969
Something to Answer For
by P. H. Newby
United Kingdom


Books will be made available to reviewers whose pitches are accepted.

Praise for The Bombay Review

 

“It is clean, fresh and audacious. A very valuable addition to journalism and literature.” – Kavery Nambisan, author, ‘A Town Like Ours’

“True to the spirit of the city it is named after, The Bombay Review encapsulates those aspects of writing that makes for timely, important literature: namely, depth, diversity, and detail. A true labor of love.” – Murzban F. Shroff, author, ‘Breathless in Bombay’ and ‘Waiting for Jonathan Koshy’

“Passion, a sense of play, and intelligence are crucial to any new venture that wants to make a mark.” – Amit Chaudhuri, author, ‘The Immortals’ and ‘Odysseus Abroad’

“TBR is both intelligent and dynamic and I love its energy and choice of writing showcased.” -Anita Nair, author, ‘Idris: Keeper of The Light’

“I cannot think of a more stylish magazine in India than this one.” – Manu Joseph, former editor of Open magazine, author, ‘Serious Men’

“TBR is one of the most exciting literary ventures to come out of India recently. It has exceptional art and writing, which this anthology stands testimony to.” – Akhil Sharma, author, ‘Family Life’

LGBTQ+ Edition 2020, TBR

Dear readers, writers, and artists, hope you have been well.

To celebrate Pride month this June, we are inviting submissions of LGBTQ+ fiction, poetry and essays for a special themed edition.

Deadline: 30th August, 2020

To send us your entries, send your work as an attachment, a square picture of yourself, and a 100-200 words third person bio of yourself in the body of the mail to thebombayreview@gmail.com.

Please note that the subject of the email MUST clearly be – ‘Submissions: LGBTQ+ – ‘Your name”

General submission guidelines can be found here.

Can’t wait to read your work!

Warm regards,

Team, TBR