There is a three-acre footprint of grass and brick-laid paths in the center of the University of Montana campus. It is the shape of an oval, and through it, university life passes.
In the fall of 2007, a group of undergraduate creative writing majors conceived the university’s first undergraduate literary magazine, to provide a forum for young artists, poets, and writers to submit, publish, and share their work. They called the project The Oval because like the swath of earth it’s named for, the magazine would provide an artery through which university life, in the form of art, could pass.
The 2014-15 school year will see the eighth volume of The Oval published. Submissions, editing, marketing, design, and distribution are all handled by The University of Montana undergraduates. In their free time, on their bikes, in stolen hours between classes, on sacrificed Sundays, in common rooms and vacant classrooms, each year, The Oval is sewn together by the tireless work of young writers who sense the vitality of creative craft. Providing a platform for the work of their peers, they feel, is essential.
The Oval is published annually. Submissions for short fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and visual art are open from February to March.