American Athenaeum
A Museum of Words
A Sword & Saga Press Publication
The WayFarers All Issue

Welcome to the Wayfarers All issue of American Athenaeum! 
This issue will take readers through a variety of literary contributions asking the questions: where have you traveled and where will you journey next? 

As our literary journal publishes “voices,” set up like a museum—a museum of words--you’ll encounter orators from the past, right alongside contemporary ones, including: a blind photographer; a Goth girl; a father coping with Asperger’s; a Voodoo queen bent on redemption; a naturopathic doctor; a Pagan editor; a Vermont gardener; the voices of Chernobyl; an American learning Shodô in Japan; an Israeli Jew, whose face is being used by anti-Semitic protesters; an American ex-pat living in France; and many more.

Special thanks to the extraordinary artist Dana Montlack and the Museum of Contemporary Art in San Diego for granting permission to feature a piece from her “Sea of Cortez” exhibit on our cover; the collection is currently on exhibit through January. (Further details in the book). And to Noble Smith, author of Wisdom of the Shire, Sons of Zeus, among others, who took the time for an in-depth interview on writing, process, and his work. To purchase, please visit:

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Things They Carry Issue

What do you carry? 

This was the question we considered when putting together the summer issue of American Athenaeum. 

Our authors and artists answered with a 
myriad of expressions that will take you from the gardens of a Vietnamese farmer, to a WWII concentration camp, to Wounded Knee in the Black Hills, to the handcrafted dolls made by a grandmother's hand, to a department store to buy a daughter her first bra, to the homeless in San Francisco, to a once-in-a-lifetime dance of the moon swallows, to India where a blind woman guides the roots of a tree over water to construct a bridge, and then on to Oxfordshire to visit the Rollright Witch and the latest installation designed by UK artist David Goslin. These are just a few places on this museum-like journey through 
American Athenaeum. By seeing what others carry, we inevitably learn what we are also capable of carrying.  

Won't you join us.

This is also our issue dedicated to art and artists. Some of those contributing work include: Brett BusangIra Joel Haber, Ivan de Monbrison, andLoren Kantor, among others. In poetry, nonfiction, and fiction, we have quite a lineup including: Jeff Rasley,Catherine JagoeLee Passarella,Gail JeidyJennifer Falkner, erica l. kaufman, Lynn Hoffman, Major Chris Heatherly, and many many more. 

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American Athenaeum: A Museum of Words

A print literary journal that blends the past and present for a museum-like experience

American Athenaeum is a cultural magazine that features fiction, poetry, essays, opinion, author book reviews, and other literary contributions. Each journal explores the world of words like a patron explores a museum—by offering a view of the past, right up until the present. We consider this journal to be a museum of artistic endeavors, filled with cultural appreciation and stories that not only teach, but demonstrate the frailty of the human condition.


About us: American Athenaeum takes its name from one of the first literary journal ever published in London during the early 1800s calledAthenaeum. We strive to offer a kaleidoscope of voices that represents the common person. Whether writers know it or not, they are influenced by the world around them. Each shares a slightly different worldview and experience into their writing. And just as we can know, understand, and learn through the voices of the past, it is our hope that through this publication, each of our smaller worlds will grow a little bigger.

Publishing the Voices of the Unheard

We wanted to open a museum, the bricks-and-mortar type, a place where we could showcase community art and writing. We envisioned artists (musicians, poets, writers, painters, etc.,) coming together in an inviting haven to share their work right alongside the common person as well as the known. We pictured rooms filled with art and writing from the past, like a miniature Library of Alexandria, and as patrons, we would remember where we've been, what we've collectively experienced, and consider where we might go next; most importantly, that we might begin to explore the possibility of a hopeful, compassionate future. 

American Athenaeum is the embodiment of this vision. 

Please take a moment to visit our exhibits, and support the work of artists from our global community. Here you'll find the janitor, the indigenous voice, the outspoken, the shy or comedic, the heroic, the disabled, the bus rider, the scholar, the poet--ultimately, your neighbors. Share us with your friends and in your classrooms, and most especially, read, read, read the voices, allow them to take you to a place you've never been before.

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The Front Porch Issue

It wasn't so long ago when the front porch was the main feature of a home. Connected to the sidewalk, to the neighborhood, to the world-at-large, the front porch was a destination. Families gathered to discuss big ideas, to share heartache and joy, to greet neighbors with news. But then something changed and the community-centered feature become replaced. (Any guess with what? You'll have to read the issue to find out for sure.) This issue is a tribute to the long-lost artifact, the once-centerpiece of the family and community. We've recreated a front porch especially for you, complete with a museum-like experience for the everyday reader. 

Some writers you'll encounter: J. Patrick Lewis (US Children's Poet Laureate 2011-13), Paula Brackston author of The Witch's DaughterRichie Swanson, Claude Clayton Smith, Carmen Welsh, Red Haircrow, Robert, Kingett, Nandini Pandya, Desmond Kon Zhicheng-Mingde, Mary Buchinger, Steven Ray Smith, and many more. Cover photo by Christopher Woods.  

**The Bonus Issue contains an exclusive copy of Swords & Sagas, Vol. 1, our speculative fiction collection, featuring stories with fierce dragons, talking fish, and a love-lost troubadour. Plus two author book reviews, and more. 

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The Understanders Issue
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The Understanders Issue

Are you an Understander? When T. S. Eliot hit the scene with his rare and unique poetry, he faced mounds of criticism. His response was that he wasn't writing for the average person, but rather for the Understanders, readers that were intelligent and exceptional, the rare crowd that would take the time to savor his work.

So are you an Understander? If so, pick up your copy today. If you’re new to American Athenaeum, then get ready for a museum-like adventure. Our issues are designed to feel like you’ve stepped into an athenaeum, connecting you to writers from the past, as well as the present. Along the way, you’ll make stops through our unique departments: America Talks, Compassion City, Voices of Endangered Species, Author Book Reviews, and more. There is something for everyone here.

Some writers you'll encounter: Carol Alexander, Brett Busang, Steven CramerPat Lowery CollinsDonald DeweyMeredith DoenchNora L. JamiesonWilliam LychackEd TascaJacqueline Westand many more. Cover photo by Harun Mehmedinovic

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The Colossus Issue
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Colossus: A Museum in Words

Get your copy of Colossus: American Athenaeum today! In this issue you'll visit exhibits of poetry, fiction, and essays from contemporary writers around the world. You'll also get a ticket to the past as we drive through the minds of a few choice orators who still have something to share with us. Our special departments are sure to delight, like America Talks, 1 Bookshelf, Writers Adopt Endangered Species, Author Book Reviews, and a novel serialization. There is something for everyone here.

Some writers you'll encounter: Ekiwah Adler BelendezWilliam DoreskiJéanpaul FerroHolly LorinczGeorge Eyre MastersGeorge MooreSimon PerchikCat SparksJudith SkillmanJoseph Thompson, and many more.

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Try out a sample issue and take the museum-like adventure.