Gulf Coast (Literary Journal)

Gulf Coast (Literary Journal)

Gulf Coast: A Journal of Literature and Fine Art is a leading literary magazine from Houston, Texas. Founded in 1986 by Donald Barthelme and Philip Lopate, "Gulf Coast" was envisioned as an intersection between the literary and visual arts communities. As a result, "Gulf Coast" has partnered with the University of Houston’s Creative Writing Program, the Museum of Fine Arts-Houston, and the Menil Collection to showcase some of the most important literary and artistic talents in the United States. Executive editors past and present include Mark Doty (1999–2005), Claudia Rankine, (2006) and Nick Flynn (2007).

Publishing poetry, fiction, and creative nonfiction, "Gulf Coast" prides itself on its eye for talent. "Gulf Coast" has received numerous honors over the years, and its authors are regularly included in the Best American, O. Henry, and Pushcart anthologies. In 2007 alone, Heather McHugh chose David Shumate’s “Drawing Jesus,” which first appeared in" Gulf Coast", for The Best American Poetry 2007, and Stephen King listed Peter Bognanni’s “The Body Eternal” and Sandra Novack’s “Memphis,” again premiering in "Gulf Coast", among the 100 Distinguished Stories in The Best American Short Stories 2007. In 2006, authors who were published by "Gulf Coast" early in their careers went on to win the Yale Younger Poets Award, the APR/Honickman Prize, the National Poetry Series, and the Juniper Prize. "Gulf Coast" featured artists Robyn O’Neil and Amy Blakemore have been selected for the prestigious Whitney Biennial.

The "Gulf Coast" Community

Since its inception, "Gulf Coast" has sought to incorporate the community in its literary and artistic efforts. The magazine prides itself on its commitment to education, as it maintains an editorial staff of nearly one hundred graduate and undergraduate students who help produce this biannual publication. Over time, "Gulf Coast" has expanded its educational role by developing internship and editorial assistantship programs, as well as by mentoring "Glass Mountain", the University of Houston’s undergraduate literary journal.

In the early ’90s, "Gulf Coast" partnered with Brazos Bookstore to establish the "Gulf Coast" Reading Series. This annual series features the student talent in the University of Houston’s Creative Writing Program (ranked 2nd in the nation by U.S. News & World Report). In 2004, the series was named “Best Reading Series” by Houston Press.

In 2003, "Gulf Coast" joined with the Council of Literary Magazines and Presses (CLMP) and the National Endowment for the Arts for an inaugural Literary Magazine and Small Press Fair. The annual event now features readings and panel discussions on the state of literary publishing. Aspiring writers can also meet with "Gulf Coast" editors to discuss their own creative work.

"Gulf Coast" Contributors


Agha Shahid Ali

John Ashbery

Mary Jo Bang
Rick Bass

Charles Baxter

Ann Beattie

Eavan Boland

Michael Burkhard

Anne Carson

Amy Clampitt

Mark Z. Danielewski

Mahmoud Darwish

Cornelius Eady

Mark Halliday

Barry Hannah

Michael S. Harper

Matthea Harvey

John Hawkes

Terrance Hayes

Seamus Heaney

Bob Hicok

Oscar Hijuelos

Alan Hollinghurst

Richard Howard

Kenneth Koch
Timothy Liu

Farnoosh Moshiri

Heather McHugh

Daniel Mendelsohn
Paul Muldoon
Viet Thanh Nguyen

Naomi Shihab Nye

Meghan O’Rourke

Grace Paley

Carl Phillips

Robert Pinsky
D. A. Powell

Imad Rahman

Tomaz Salamun

Ntozake Shange

Susan Sontag

Natasha Trethewey

John Updike
Karen Volkman

Franz Wright
C. Dale Young

Dean Young

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