“I interrupt my currently scheduled absence to bring you some kind words…”
That’s how our founding collaborator Kate Strum started an email to our team this week. It made me smile, as most of her messages do.
Kate recently moved to Idaho, put a pause on New Territory work, and doesn’t have to check in on our emails at all. Then again, she never had to do anything more than submit her short story “Personal Geology” (order Issue 01 to read). But she did. She got that first issue stocked at bookstores in Oklahoma, social media’d it like crazy and never stopped giving herself to the publication, from forming founding principles to helping run our fellows program to sharing those kind words. Just as she left the Territory, Kate published a thank-you letter to Oklahoma. And dangit, she deserves a thank-you letter back.
Surround Yourself with Friends. Your Work Will Get Better.
Creative partnerships fascinate me: Radiohead and Thom Yorke’s creative universe, Toni Morrison and Angela Davis’s friendship of 40+ years, Emerson and Thoreau, literary sisterhood and so many more. You probably have your own duos or teams you admire. Their work gets deeper as their relationships strengthen over time.
It’s no wonder. Friendship enhances well-being. Social acknowledgement and gratification open your creative faculties. The best way to improve creative work is to invest in friendships that sustain you. We’ve found The New Territory’s best friends share these four elements:
Kate definitely embodies these. As we figure out how we’ll continue the New Territory relationship with her from afar, we’re happy to pause and say thank you for what she’s done for the entire NT community.
Your Turn: Share Your Own Kind Words
In the coming weeks, we’ll dig into what friendship looks like for a small literary journalism mag. Kate will make another appearance, along with many others.
We hope it sparks appreciation or inspiration for your own creative friendships. As you think of them, share your stories on social media with the hashtag #territoryfriends.
OR go a step farther and show your friends how much they mean to you. Gift or split a share package of 5 back issues! We’re taking $25 off through the end of 2018.