Monday, September 26, 2011

TOS Review - Aletheia Writing Magazine

We have been browsing Aletheia Magazine, a quarterly magazine published for teens ages 13-19.  Aletheia offers Christian teens a place to share their writing talents. They are invited to submit stories, articles, poems, book reviews, and even photos.  Each edition includes a Writers Challenge, a Featured Contributor, a book review, an interview, some nature photos, and a section of quotes from writers of the past.   The magazine is not limited to homeschoolers, but as it turns out, most of the contributors are homeschoolers.

We received Aletheia’s Fall 2011 issue in the mail, along with a digital copy of the Summer 2011 issue.

Aletheia Logo - Blue Border

When the magazine arrived in the mail, I was immediately impressed by how visually appealing it was! Glossy, full-color, and high quality, with beautiful graphics and artwork.  The nature photograph section was gorgeous.  The layouts were attractive, and there was a good mix of article lengths - I liked that there were some short articles, essays and poems (a page or half-page) along with some multi-page stories.  There were very few ads, which I really appreciated, and those that did appear seemed to be consistent with the look and style of the magazine.

Personally, I loved the in-depth interview with illustrator Joe Goode featured in this issue.  Several examples of his artwork were featured, and the interview not only introduced him with a little bit of background, but took the reader through his creative process, giving guidance to readers who might be interested in a similar career path.  This was not just a 'fluffy' interview - it was detailed, scholarly, and focused on his work and his purpose of glorifying God through his art.

The Aletheia website has some very good writing tips especially for fiction writers.  The magazine itself doesn't offer advice and tips for writers, but the Writers Challenge gives an idea or topic to write about, and a photo to base a poem on.

I gave the magazine to my two sons (Spencer is 16 and Landon is 12) to look through as well.  Neither of them are interested in writing at all, but they do like to read.  Spencer is interested in art and illustrating, so he read the interview with illustrator Joe Goode.  Landon read a couple of the stories and found them interesting.  I didn't really expect either of them to be inspired to write fiction and poetry on their own as a result of reading the magazine, which is good because that didn't happen. 8-)  But it was interesting reading for them, and they both thought it was cool that the contributors to the magazine were teens.  I can think of several teens I know that are budding authors that would probably really appreciate a magazine like this.  The magazine isn't a great fit for our family because my boys do not want to write - for teens that enjoy writing and would like the opportunity and challenge to share their work with others, this would be great!

What We Liked Best:

  • full-color, professional and beautiful magazine.  This is classy and high-quality!  My guess is that a teen writer would be very proud of having their work published in Aletheia!

  • variety - there's poetry, book reviews, interviews, photographs, and short stories.  The short stories vary in their style as well.

  • limited advertising

  • encouraging and inspiring

  • all the stories, poems, artwork and photos are contributed by teens.

What We Weren't Crazy About:

  • my non-writing teen and pre-teen just weren't crazy about it.  LOL  They were okay with reading it, but didn't want me to think that they would want to write anything as a result!

  • I was kind of expecting writing tips in the magazine itself, and I think that would be a good feature to add to it, rather than just having tips on the website.

Would Aletheia Writing Magazine be right for your writers?  Here's what you need to know:

You may visit the website for more information:  Aletheia and connect with them on Facebook.

A subscription to Aletheia Writing Magazine is $26 per year (or $29 in Canada), and includes four color issues per year. The price includes shipping and handling.

You may also view a sample on the website.

Aletheia Spring 2011 Magazine Cover

Visit the TOS Homeschool Crew Blog for more info and to read reviews from other Crew members.


Note: As part of the TOS Homeschool Crew, we were provided with a sample issue in exchange for our honest opinions.


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