Student Comics Launch University’s First Literary Magazine

%22The+Literate%22+is+Fordham%27s+first+online+humor+magazine.
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Student Comics Launch University’s First Literary Magazine

"The Literate" is Fordham's first online humor magazine.

Julia Comerford/The Fordham Ram

"The Literate" is Fordham's first online humor magazine.

Julia Comerford/The Fordham Ram

Julia Comerford/The Fordham Ram

"The Literate" is Fordham's first online humor magazine.

Helen Stevenson, News Editor

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The Literate launched this week as the first and only online humor magazine for Fordham students.

“And maybe the last, depending on how this whole thing goes,” its website reads.

Articles addressed a range of topics with satire, from President Trump’s change of residency to someone who lost all their phone contacts. Pieces spoke on true stories with satire, humor and wit. The debut issue, “The Family Issue,” came out Thursday, Nov. 7, and poked fun at family dynamics — just in time for Thanksgiving.

Kevin Daley, FCRH ’22, editor in chief of The Literate, said the idea came to him this past summer when he noticed that colleges across the country had humor magazines, but Fordham did not.

“The ‘humor magazine’ concept takes inspiration from one of the most famous magazines in America, the Harvard Lampoon, a satire magazine that has produced some of the most prolific movies of our generation,” he said.

Daley also said it seemed like a fun way to grow as a writer. So, he reached out to the funniest people he knew at Fordham — members of Free Pizza Sketch Comedy, Stranded In Pittsburgh Improv Comedy and Allergy Friendly Standup Comedy.

“They were all really down with the idea,” he said.

The staff is a culmination of students from and outside of these groups. The executive board includes Daley, Catherine LeClair, FCRH ’21, Lizzy Jerse, FCRH ’22, and Sage O’Dell, FCRH ’21. The board runs the magazine with a staff of about 14 people serving as writers, artists and graphic designers.

According to Daley, The Literate is expecting to launch a second issue before the end of the fall semester. In the future, they hope to upload 3–4 issues a month online and expand to print publishing.

LeClair serves as The Literate’s creative director, and did a lot of brainstorming and logistical work at the start of the year with Daley to get the publication started. She said their goal was to create a place where Fordham students can publish comedic creative writing pieces in a magazine format.

“Fordham has a lot of awesome literary magazines, however none focus specifically on the comedic creative writing genre,” she said. “Our goal is to continuously offer new works, both on our website and our online publications. … Overall, we hope to promote humor and creativity.”

She said the most important goal, though, is to make students laugh.

Nora Thomas, FCRH ’21, staff writer for The Literate, said working for the magazine is refreshing as a journalist on campus. She also anchors and reports for WFUV, but said the magazine is a way for her to step out of her comfort zone.

She said she loves working for WFUV, but with the Literate she has a chance to use her imagination and creative writing skills. However, she said it was an adjustment moving from unbiased to comedic news writing.

“[S]ince I’m so accustomed to the formulaic way of writing for WFUV, I’ve had a hard time extending myself outside of pre-formed writing styles,” she said. “And in all reality, it’s much easier to write about facts. Being unbiased is almost a crutch, because you don’t have to be as compelling as you would be making an argument or trying to be funny.”

Thomas believes The Literate is an opportunity to write goofy poetry and develop a strong narrative voice in a way that is not available in an academic setting.

“I’m really excited for students to have the opportunity to write outside the preconceived forms we’re all accustomed to,” she said. “We aren’t writing news, we aren’t purely satire.”

Daley said he and other board members encourage writers, graphic designers, businesspeople and artists to join staff.

For anyone interested in applying, the application form is on its website. Those looking to keep up with The Literate’s latest issues can follow @theliteratemag on Instagram or visit its website at www.theliterate.org.