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Communities of Writers (Jürgen Fauth, Fictionaut)

Jürgen Fauth is the co-founder of Fictionaut. His debut novel Kino is out now from Atticus Books. You can follow him on Twitter at @muckster. Fictionaut is an innovative literary community that combines elements of a social network with a self-selecting literary magazine. Follow @fictionaut for news and @fictionautrx for recommended stories.

Introduction: “Chronologie”

In 2008, Carson Baker and I launched Fictionaut, a literary community that combines elements of a social network with a crowdsourced literary magazine. The site’s genesis, however, started much earlier. By 1996, it was becoming clear to me that the Internet would profoundly change publishing. At the time, I was a graduate student at the University of Southern Mississippi and worked with Frederick Barthelme on moving the Mississippi Review online, making it the first traditional literary magazine to take to the Internet. Fascinated with the possibilities, I started my own online German-language magazine, Der Brennende Busch.

Anyone who knows German will agree that Der Brennende Busch is a terrible name for a magazine. One of the first sites of its kind in German (or any language), it had a good run anyway. This was the era of screeching modems and AOL discs clogging mailboxes, but from the very beginning, I wrestled with fundamental questions of how to translate a print magazine into a more fluid online incarnation.

What did it mean, for instance, to have issues ...

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