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Outlet program promo with jungle background.
Outlet: The BYU-Idaho Art and Literary Journal seeks submissions of all types of written and visual creative art. 

An award-winning publication, Outlet offers you a venue for your original poetry, photography, fiction, illustrations, paintings, essays, graphic designs, scholarly essays, and other forms of creative expression.

The Beginning of Outlet

In a black-and-white, 5" X 8" format, with 86 pages, the first issue was a student-led publication funded by the English Department and the Ricks College Honors Program. In that first issue, the student editors wrote, "Our aim is to encourage creative and independent thought among the students of Ricks College through providing a forum for student expression—an Outlet."

This wasn't the first such journal that Ricks College had seen. In the early 1990s, at least two others had appeared, showcasing the work of Ricks College creative writing courses. One was called The Ballad of the Orange Cat. Each of these publications came and went in one issue. No doubt other publications had appeared earlier, lost now to history.

When the students who created Outlet graduated from Ricks College, the idea of their journal easily could have left Rexburg with them. But a year later, Ricks hired a new English professor, Stephen George, who was anxious to help publish a student literary journal.

Upon learning that Outlet had produced just one issue, Stephen was ready to make sure the publication stayed alive. Enlisting the help of Matt Babcock, Mark Bennion, Joelle Moen, and Jack Harrell in the English Department, as well as members of the Art and Communications Departments-Scott Franson, Kelly Burgener, and Lane Williams-Stephen selected a handful of student assistants and sent out a call for submissions. The second issue of Outlet: The Ricks College Literary Journal appeared in 2000. That issue won a First Place award from the American Scholastic Press Association and the "Best New Magazine Honorable Mention" from the Community College Humanities Association.

"A publication the entire campus can be proud of."
Stephen George

The third issue of Outlet appeared in 2001, with Mark Bennion joining the ranks of faculty advisors. In that issue's "Director's Introduction," Stephen George reported that the journal had received some 200 submissions and had garnered "permanent funding and enthusiastic support from the college." Months later, that issue would win the CCHA national "Most Improved Literary Magazine" award, as well as taking Third Place in the Pacific Northwest Division, making Outlet, in Stephen's words, "a publication the entire campus can be proud of."

Students stand in a circle for a outlet promo

When Ricks College became Brigham Young University-Idaho, Outlet also got a new name. In 2002, the fourth issue was titled Outlet: The BYU-Idaho Literary Journal. As with the previous issues Stephen had directed, Outlet contained poetry, essays, fiction, art, graphics design, and scholarly writing. Stephen wrote in that issue's introduction that his goal was to "showcase . . . the very best research and creative work produced at the university."

Having worked on the journal for five years, Stephen George directed the fifth issue of Outlet in 2003. Since then, submissions for Outlet have been gathered, judged, and edited by students in English 418: Creative Writing and Publishing. In 2006, Stephen George passed away from cancer. Outlet was just one of many good things he did during his tenure at BYU-Idaho. Surely, if Stephen had not taken up the cause of the fledgling journal, it would not exist today.

Since 2004, in conjunction with English 418, Outlet has been directed by Jack Harrell, Jim Richards, Mark Bennion, and Matt Babcock. In 2008, under Mark Bennion, the journal changed to its current format, an 11" X 8 ½", four-color format. With the help of Shawn Randall's Graphics Design class in the BYU-Idaho Art Department, Outlet now features student poetry, fiction, essays, and scholarly writing, as well as colorful art, illustrations, and stunning graphic design. Today Outlet: The BYU-Idaho Art and Literary Journal remains "a publication the entire campus can be proud of."

Jack Harrell
English Department

Writing Projects

Submit your original poetry, fiction, personal essays, or scholarly essays. You can submit up to five times each year.

Written entrees should be typed, double-spaced (except poems), and fewer than 4,000 words. Be sure to title your work. Written submissions will not be returned. You will receive an email notification about your submission.

Art Projects

Share your illustrations, paintings, graphic designs, or photography. You can submit up to five times each year.

For paintings, graphic design, and illustrations, submit your original artwork. Your original work will be returned through the BYU-Idaho Department of Art. Photography should be printed at a minimum of 300 dpi, at 8.5 X 11 inches or size equivalent.

All art projects will be photographed for Outlet. The Art Department can help you arrange this.

Submission Process

The submission deadline is the end of Winter Semester each year. Submissions will be judged by BYU-Idaho writing and art students under the supervision of BYU-Idaho English and Art faculty.

To submit to Outlet, download the Outlet Submission Form, print and fill out the form, and turn it in with your submission. Submit a hard copy version of your written work to the English Department office, Rigby 180. Submit art work to the Department of Art office, Spori 316.

View Outlet from 2014.
View Outlet from 2013.
View Outlet from 2011.
View Outlet from 2010.
View Outlet from 2008.