The Next Chapter Literary Magazine celebrates a return of “Hospitality”

The Next Chapter Literary Magazine


Last year at this time, I introduced our little corner of the world to The Next Chapter Literary Magazine, featuring local authors and artists and a theme of “Arts in Quarantine”, which I unashamedly stole right off the Internet.

The success and enthusiasm I received for Issue 1 encouraged me to begin issue 2, with its theme of “Creative Convergence”, which showcased the way the convergence of two rivers influenced creativity in this area.

On July 1, 2021, Issue 3 of The Next Chapter Literary Magazine will make its debut. This issue celebrates the theme of “Hospitality” and features works from artists and authors from as far away as Raleigh, N.C., and from as close as, well, your local independent bookstore.

I chose the theme “hospitality” because I hoped by this point, it would be easier to be hospitable. To take vacations and visit and accept the hospitality of others. To offer hospitality, to greet friends and neighbors and welcome them into our homes.

The variety of submissions I received astounded me. Hospitality can mean different things to the same person. There’s a whole industry built around the word, after all. The submissions I received reflected this variety. Poetry of all sorts, essays, short stories. Authors remembered parties, visits, friends, family, and vacations. Heartwarming, tear-jerking, hilarious, wistful. The submissions reflected a desire to return to simpler times and hospitable days that echoed in my own heart.

Appropriately, this little magazine is the work of my heart, just like the bookstore is. As such, I invite you all to come in, enjoy and love it. It’s a birthday and an anniversary. It’s a celebration. Welcome.

The Next Chapter Literary Magazine is available at The Next Chapter Books & Art in downtown New Bern, N.C. Issue 4 is scheduled for January 2022 and will feature the theme “History”. For more information about when and what to submit to the magazine, check out the website.

By Michelle Garren Flye

Michelle Garren Flye
Photo by Sam Love