In late April, 1,000 copies of the Waving Hands Review will roll off the presses, the pages fresh with the works of writers and artists from across Northwest Colorado.
The Colorado Northwestern Community College literary review will be printed in the spring for a second year, said Joe Wiley, an English instructor at CNCC Rangely.
The magazine will include submissions from students, faculty, staff and other community members in Rangely and Craig.
Wiley said the magazine helps create a cultural connection between to the two campuses and towns.
“One of the big selling points to the administration of the school was that there’s kind of this gap between the Rangely and Craig campuses,” he said. “And this bridged it. They really want to see it continue to keep Rangely and Craig connected.”
Wiley worked at Front Range Community College in Fort Collins, where he managed the literary magazine there.
When he moved to Rangely to teach English and philosophy 15 years ago, he found a void in the art and writing culture.
“One of the things that was sorely lacking was a venue for people to express themselves artistically,” he said. “We started it last year, and it was just going to be confined to the CNCC family as kind of a pilot project. This year, we want to open it up more to the community. We want anyone in Northwest Colorado to be able to submit.”
Submissions will be taken up until March 1 and can be turned in electronically at cncc.edu.
The review welcomes drawings, paintings, fiction and non-fiction writings, poetry, photography, essays, cartoons and digital artwork.
Cash prizes will be given to selected submissions from each category.
Because Wiley works in Rangely, he previously enlisted the help of CNCC Craig writing instructor Carol Jacobson, the late co-owner of Downtown Books, to drum up interest and submissions.
Jacobson died in a river rafting accident July 29, 2009.
“Carol was absolutely instrumental in bringing in the Craig aspect of the magazine,” he said. “She just embraced it and ran with it. Most of the submissions we got from Craig had something to do with her students.”
Although Wiley said Craig’s artistic community has suffered a great loss, he hopes submissions and support from the Craig area will not wane in the review’s second year.
“Carol was so passionate and instrumental and that’s just her personality,” he said. “But I don’t want to see the Craig end of it disappear.”
He said there are many amateur artists in Northwest Colorado who dabble in arts and crafts, journaling or another artistic activity as a creative outlet.
He hopes, with the literary magazine, to draw these people and their talents out into the open — talents that became apparent to Wiley by the quality of submissions he received last year.
“It’s a human need,” he said. “People need some way to express themselves. Whether it’s making jewelry or writing, people like artistic outlets in their lives.”
Not only can the literary review give local artists an expressive outlet, it can educate and expand the mind of the non-artistic community, or anyone who happens to pick up a copy of Waving Hands at a local bookstore or library.
“I would hope it would dawn on them that their neighbors are out there and have these kind of talents that are really substantial,” Wiley said.
Nicole Inglis can be reached at 875-1793, or firstname.lastname@example.org.