The Borders Project feature (Sarajevo-Atlanta) in EuropeNow Journal

The Borders Project, a literary collaboration between two writers’ collectives to which I belong, is currently being featured in EuropeNow Journal. The ongoing series includes poetry and prose created by the writers of the Sarajevo Writers’ Workshop and Atlanta’s Narrative Collective. Writing in Bosnian/Croatian/ Serbian appears in Mirza Puric’s fine English translation. The series also features the work of various Sarajevo-based photographers.
I wrote an introduction to our feature here.
The contents list is accumulating and currently includes the following pieces. Photographic responses by Sarajevo-based visual artists Vanja Čerimagić, Nerma Sofić, and Merisa Basić appear below their respectively assigned texts.
Frontierspeople, a poem by Dijala Hasanbegović, translated by Mirza Purić
Three Quarters of the Way Through the Poem, a poem by Melanie Jordan
Prague-Berlin Train, a short story by Stacy Mattingly
The Nation, a poem by Selma Asotić
Two Poems by Esther Lee
Hladno, an essay by Marina Alagić-Bowder
Tangle, a short story by Kulović Selma, translated by Mirza Purić
Alva Goes to the Neuro-Ophthalmologist, a poem by L.S. McKee
January, a poem by Zerina Zahirović, translated by Mirza Purić

NEMA on Tour

In 2014, Matea Šimić of the Sarajevo Writers’ Workshop (SWW) launched the Bosnian/Croatian/Serbian online culture journal NEMA. I spoke with her last summer about her vision for the publication—you can read about our conversation here.

Her aim is to create a hub for “
authentic voices loosely connected because they are new and different.” In fact, an interesting cross-borders community is growing up around the journal.

This summer, Matea took NEMA on tour, giving presentations in both Sarajevo and Zagreb. The events included live readings, appearances by contributors via video and audio, among other things. 

Several SWW writers gave readings during the Sarajevo presentation at Buybook Bookstore and Café, where our workshop held its first gatherings in 2012-2013. I joined Matea’s events via video, as did NEMA’s English Chapter editor Maire Ryan (also of SWW).

NEMA’s contribution is already a rich one. Not only is the journal serving readers, writers, and artists in the Balkans, but with the addition of an English chapter, it is also connecting with writers from places like the UK, US, and Venezuela, for instance. 

Stay tuned for some innovative artistic work out of NEMA in the coming months! 

For an accumulating archive of SWW writers’ work in NEMA, go to our SWW page here.

NEMA on Facebook.

NEMA on Twitter.

Photos of the events courtesy of NEMA. Reading live at Buybook were SWW’s Selma Asotić, Naida Avdović, Nermana Česko, and Kulović Selma.

The Borders Project: Sarajevo Writers' Workshop + Atlanta's Narrative Collective

The Borders Project: A Literary Collaboration
Narrative Collective + Sarajevo Writers’ Workshop

Last fall, two groups of writers to which I belong – Narrative Collective in Atlanta, Georgia, and the Sarajevo Writers’ Workshop in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina – decided to hold an online workshop and get to know each other, creating new poetry and prose under the heading The Borders Project. 

We worked in both English and Bosnian/Croatian/Serbian and were able to discuss each other’s work, thanks to the heroic efforts of our SWW literary translator, also an editor-at-large for Asymptote Journal, Mirza Purić. In May, we gave a cross-borders reading in Atlanta with the SWW writers presenting via video.

Asymptote Journal has graciously allowed me to write about our ongoing project and the body of work we've produced.

The essay, "The Borders Project Reading," is up at Asymptote's blog today.

Photo by Vanja Čerimagić

Photo by Vanja Čerimagić



Background image by  Olivia Brozek.