Congratulations to the Young Adult Review Network (YARN), which has recently been awarded an Innovations in Reading Prize from the National Book Foundation. YARN was founded in 2010 as an independent online journal to publish fiction, poetry, and essays by teen-aged writers alongside the work of established and emerging adult contributors.
The National Book Foundation awards these prizes annually to individuals and institutions “that have developed innovative means of creating and sustaining a lifelong love of reading.” Its citation notes that YARN is
the first independent online literary journal dedicated to young adult (YA) literature; they publish short fiction, poetry, essays, and interviews, as well as an editors’ blog and lesson plans for teachers. While there have long been hundreds of journals publishing curated short-form literature for adults, the few existing YA journals published primarily teen writers. YARN was founded to showcase a diversity of fresh voices in YA by including teens alongside established writers and emerging adult writers, to elevate the YA genre and promote literacy. The YARN editors believe that readers are made, not born—and they are made with each work they read. The journal provides a broad swath of content: exclusive interviews with luminaries like Meg Cabot and Mitali Perkins, boundary-pushing stories like those by Jonathan Papernick, and finely crafted poems like those by college student Allison Malecha. Its content acts as gateway reading, enticing readers to return to YARN and to venture into their local libraries and bookstores.
YARN’s editor and founder is Kerri Majors, a Berkeley English alum and former writing professor at Fairleigh Dickinson University.