About ZYZZYVA

Mission

Reflecting the values that make San Francisco a cultural beacon, ZYZZYVA publishes a literary journal defined by its risk-taking and egalitarianism, and by its focus on inclusivity and excellence.

With each issue, ZYZZYVA offers a meaningful consideration of the most urgent ethical concerns of our time, in part via themed issues on topics ranging from resistance, the border, and art to the environment, labor, and technology. We create substantial space for poetry, nonfiction, interviews, fiction, and art from an array of voices, resulting in a lively, thoughtful conversation in print, online, and in-person, across genres and generations, answering the need for a unique kind of engagement.

More About Us

ZYZZYVA was founded in 1985 in San Francisco with the goal of publishing a superb literary journal shining a spotlight on West Coast poets, writers, and artists from a wide range of backgrounds, many of whom were otherwise overlooked by established publications, and providing them with a much needed platform.

“Reading ZYZZYVA is what time is for.”

—Michelle Latiolais

Since then, the organization has evolved: the journal is now a nationally distributed, widely acclaimed publication showcasing contributors from across the country and around the world, and ZYZZYVA’s impact extends far beyond the printed page. We host or participate in more than two dozen readings, panels, book festivals, and other events each year, and publish dozens of book reviews, author interviews, and original works of poetry and prose on our website annually. We also offer writing workshops, speak with college and graduate classes, and donate back issues to schools. In 2020, we marked 35 years of continuous publishing, celebrating more than three decades of enriching contemporary literature and supporting literary communities in the Bay Area and beyond.

As we approach publication of our milestone 125th issue, we hope you join us by supporting our decades-long commitment to writers, poets, artists, and readers. Your donations and subscriptions make every issue, and every year of service, possible.

In the News

2022

2021

2020

2014

2011

Recognition

Work published in ZYZZYVA is frequently included in or otherwise acknowledged by the Best American anthologies, as well as by the Pushcart Prize and O. Henry Prize. In 2019 we received the Council of Literary Magazines and Presses’ Firecracker Award for Best Magazine: General Excellence, and in 2021 a story published in ZYZZYVA received the AKO Caine Prize for African Writing. In 2022, ZYZZYVA was honored with the Whiting Literary Magazine Prize, as well as the Recognition Award from the Northern California Book Awards.

ZYZZYVA: Whiting Literary Magazine Prize Winner