Sabne Raznik's involvement with Wurm im Apfel Press in Ireland from 2010 until its dissolution had demonstrated to her how valuable, even vital, experimentation and the avant garde are to any healthy, living literary scene. The Wurm poets infused Ireland with a dose of much needed excitement and energy, challenging the established modes of expression and pushing poetry into entirely new territories. She also got involved with the Modern and Contemporary American Poetry community in September 2014. In July 2015, Raznik had the opportunity to attend the prestigious Appalachian Writers Workshop at Hindman Settlement School in Eastern Kentucky. There she found a good reception to her own work, but generally a resistance to avant garde and indy publishing. It seemed to Raznik that there was a real need for a publication that directly supports and encourages full experimentation, where rules exist to be broken and made new. She therefore determined to create a home for that avant garde and Kodi Mullins volunteered to help as Founding Short Story Ed(itor). (She has since moved on to other adventures. Our current Short Story Ed(itor) is David Sykes.) The result: AvantAppal(achia) - the foremost publication for avant garde in Central Appalachia. Is(sue) 1 was released in 2016.
In 2018, AvantAppal(achia) teamed up with the Watershed Journal in Pennsylvania and poet T. Byron Kelly to found North/South Appalachia. This is a journal (and occasional anthology) meant to showcase the whole of what is happening in poetry and art across all 13 states of Appalachia as part of the ongoing Appalachian Renaissance. As of 2022, AvantAppal(achia) is no longer directly involved in North/South Appalachia, but we still believe in the project and strongly encourage our Appalachian Kin to consider submitting there as well.
We invite you to join our Kinfolk! Our goal is to bring the world to Appalachia and Appalachia to the world, break stereotypes and boundaries, and find out what poetry, short story, and art can do in the 21st century. We are artists: the rules do not apply.