The Windward Review, a Showcase of South Texas Voices

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas – In an exhibit of unique South Texas and Coastal Bend literary voices, a celebration was held to honor the release of volume 16 of The Windward Review. The Windward Review is an international literary journal published by Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi’s Department of English and Islander Creative Writers (ICW).

“It takes a village of faculty, staff, and students to bring a journal of this merit to our community and it’s been a spectacular process,” shared Dr. Robin Carstensen, creative writing coordinator, assistant professor of English, and senior editor of The Windward Review and The Switchgrass Review.

Since taking over the journal’s publication in 2017, Carstensen has diligently worked with ICW members to create a space for unique narratives in Spanish and English. Volume 16 not only features international and national distinguished writers, as well as emerging writers, but also includes work from Islander faculty, students, and community members.

“It’s important for us, as a University, to honor the diverse and dynamic culture and history of this region through the written and spoken word,” said Carstensen. “It’s necessary to promote narratives that express who we are, where we have come from, and that push against barriers of mobility and attempts of erasure. We also want to celebrate our transnational histories of interconnectedness.”

From the beginning of the volume’s conception, Rebekah Bluestein, Islander alumna `17 and managing editor of The Windward Review, worked laboriously to bring it to fruition. She evaluated each submission to select high-quality content before sending them to assistant and associate editors, corresponded with contributors, and was a deciding factor on which works best represented the journal.   

“Throughout the editorial process, Dr. Carstensen was a mother-figure, a teacher, and a best friend. She’s taught me so much,” said Bluestein.

At the celebration held Sept. 13 in the University Center, it was standing-room only. The evening included readings from nationally recognized author P.W. Covington and writers published in The Windward Review. Other performers during the open mic included community members, Islander faculty, students, and alumni.

“Listening to the performances opened up my world,” shared Aiyanna Simmons, a freshman nursing major. “It’s encouraging to see people come from all over to read and share their writing. It reminded me why I brought a journal from home in the first place.”

The Windward Review is currently accepting submissions for volume 17. Writers of all genres and artists are invited to submit work that speak to any of the dynamic themes of the South Texas experience.