Witness seeks original fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and photography that is innovative in its approach, broad-ranging in its concerns, and unapologetic in its perspective. The magazine blends the features of a literary and an issue-oriented magazine to highlight the role of the modern writer as witness to their times.
Our mission is to amplify extraordinary voices, feature writers from every part of the globe, and highlight pieces that speak to the present moment in an enduring and distinctive way. The magazine seeks to open up conversations surrounding oppression and transcendence, prejudice and compassion, fear and raw honesty. The editorial team is also proud to feature the work of emerging voices alongside that of established writers.
This site serves as an archive for selected issues of Witness. Visit Witness magazine's homepage for more information.
Alex Berge, Andrew Bertaina, Andrew Collard, Miranda Dennis, Andrea Eberly, Emily Greenberg, Day Heisinger-Nixon, Sarah Helen, L.A. Johnson, Anne Liu Kellor, Mary Kuryla, Emmy Newman, Lara Palmqvist, Mary Lane Potter, David Lerner Schwartz, Michelle Sharpe, Nina Sudhakar, Kristina Ten, Eric Tran, and Pamela Yenser
Editor's Note [Excerpt] Magic can mean many different things, especially for writers. Magic can be an illusion, a sleight of hand designed to trick onlookers into believing the impossible. Or magic can be a supernatural force in a world of harsh reality, a set of beliefs that sits just outside the realms of organized religion and advanced technology. Wizards and demons, Las Vegas entertainers and houngans --they all practice a kind of sorcery. For poets and prose writers, though, magic affords an opportunity for us to stretch the limitations of the physical world in search of new themes, settings, and characters. Magic is a door we eagerly walk through to reach new lands. We at Witness have thoroughly enjoyed the process of selecting the themed works we have collected here, mainly because the idea of enchantment is inspiring. There is the possibility of positive charms; there is a chance for dark witchery. And sometimes the spell cast by a character is nebulous, difficult to categorize. It’s arguable that we cherish these incantations the most, since they leave us in a state of wonderment bordering on disorientation. Yes, magic can also leave us bewildered and thankful for the bewilderment.
Amitai Ben-Abba, Bruce Bond, Dakota Canon, Laura Cesarco EGlin, Kate Finegan, Miriam Bird Greenberg, Jesse Lee Kercheval, Josef Krebs, Brandon Krieg, Cody Lee, Zining Mok, Aimee Noel, Martha Petersen, Anzhelina Polonskaya, Eman Quotah, Tim Raymond, Maxine Rosaler, F. Daniel Rzicznek, Fabian Severo, Sarah Mollie Silberman, Jean Thompson, Amber Weelerbacon, Amy A. Whitcomb, Caroline Wilkinson, Kristin Winet, and Carolyne Wright
Editor's Note [Excerpt] The United States, as a society, is on the brink of profound and positive change. Demographically and culturally, things are improving, and the reason is obvious to people who study history: Conflict pushes us to be better, to strive for principled goals. Consider the inspired eco-advocacy of Greta Thunberg. Or the swearing in of most diverse class of lawmakers in history into the 116th Congress. Or billionaire Robert F. Smith’s pledge to pay off every Morehouse College (in Atlanta, Georgia) student’s debt. Indeed, there are many good people helping and great moments happening in spite of a bleak 24-hour news cycle designed to ruin happiness and to limit our understanding of our human potential. We at Witness see this yearning for transformation in the works we selected. The doorway must be crossed, and the voices and characters we featured in our Winter 2019 issue stand at the vestibule, ready for the light to warm them, primed to fight for that necessary illumination.