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Old Yinzer on Last Legs

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Given The New Yinzer's status as a literary journal published primarily on the Internet, it seems appropriate that news of its possible demise was announced solely on the Ground Zero Lit List, read largely by local writers and small-press publishers. "We'd like to see TNY live on in some sort of incarnation," wrote TNY Editorial Director Jennifer Meccariello

 

 

Meccariello and the rest of her editorial team are offering the city's literature enthusiasts a chance to keep The New Yinzer afloat. Yinzerites -- Seth Madej, Eric Lidji and a small coterie of occasional contributors -- will give the business away for free, and work for up to a year as an advisory board, provided someone with a satisfactory business plan steps forward.

 

"I don't want someone to take it over who has another [publishing] project," says Meccariello. Thus far, she reports, only one currently unencumbered group has asked about taking over.

 

When Meccariello, a University of Pittsburgh MFA candidate (and one of the judges of City Paper's short-fiction contest), launched the journal with two college friends, they intended to create an online publication that combined narrative non-fiction prose, first-person essays and conceptual photography.

 

The largest challenge of the journal's nearly four-year run, Meccariello says, was the long-term fatigue. "Not that I'm a money-driven person," she insists, "but we never could figure out how to make The New Yinzer our job. Maybe I'm taking on the personality of an old person, but I'm tired of hustling."

 

The group's reasons for ceasing work on The New Yinzer, which has also spawned a reading series, a radio show and a book-publishing arm, are largely occupational: Lidji will be working as a reporter for the Waxahachie (Texas) Daily Light. Meccariello and Madej are planning to explore other mediums of writing, possibly as partners.

 

"I'm really excited to see what could happen to it," Meccariello adds. "I really don't want to fold the company. Because once it's folded, it's gone."

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