Breaking borders: Launching a regional literary journal in times of arts funding uncertainty

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


A new literary journal of the Northern Territory, Borderlands, launched an online
pilot edition in 2019 and an online print edition in 2020. The publication comes
twenty years after its predecessor, Northern Perspectives, ceased publishing due to
losing its Australia Council funding and support from Northern Territory University
(now Charles Darwin University). As the editors of the journal, in this article we
analyse how we funded and published the journal’s pilot editions against the backdrop
of precarious arts funding and a ravaged arts sector, due in part to the impacts of the
COVID-19 pandemic. We provide a cost breakdown of publishing the journal and
analyse our approach and processes in order to offer some insight and transparency to
stakeholders, patrons and others contemplating literary journal publishing. Despite the
challenging landscape of arts funding in Australia, ultimately the benefits of pursuing
literary publishing in the regions to foster regional writing as part of Australian
literature are worth the obstacles encountered on the path to publication. Our research
suggests there are four key pillars integral to a journal’s success and sustainability in
an underfunded sector: a flexible approach, community support and engagement,
early stakeholder consultation, and transparency surrounding the costs of literary
journal publishing.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-26
Number of pages26
JournalTEXT: Journal of Writing and Writing Programs
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2021


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