Olivet College’s student-led literary and visual arts magazine, The Garfield Lake Review “The Garf,” has been printed since 1971. The Garfield Lake Review submission period is open in the fall of each academic year to poetry, fiction, non-fiction, art and other forms of original work. The Garfield Lake Review is currently led by Faculty Adviser Meredith Dodson and Editor Savannah Baker.
Savannah said that she decided to join The Garf at the beginning of her sophomore year as a volunteer. “Since my first year with The Garf went so well, I decided to apply to become editor, and then in the fall of 2021, during my junior year, I did become the new editor,” Savannah explained.
Junior Bray Wright, an English major and writing minor, joined The Garf’s team in the fall of 2020. Bray said that she thinks The Garf is an important platform of self-expression because it is a place where students can submit their own, unique creative work. “Professional journals can have incredibly high standards, which can be intimidating to new writers. I also think it’s a really great opportunity for students who want to explore the publishing industry and editing process,” Bray added.
Savannah said one of The Garf’s highlights in the fall of 2021 was when the team opened submissions to the campus. “It is just thrilling to think about the potential for the new editions of The Garf. The stories, poems and art are so fresh and exciting. This semester I am really looking forward to having a physical copy of the new edition in my hands. We put so much work into each year’s edition, so when we finally get the finished product, we all feel a great sense of accomplishment,” Savannah added.
One of Savannah’s personal goals as the editor of The Garf this year is to grow her leadership skills. “My experience volunteering with The Garf was obviously very different from my experience leading it, and I know I still have a lot to learn. I am thankful for this time in which I have had to develop this skill before I enter the real world,” Savannah said.
Marrissa Pritchard ’21 had a poem featured in last year’s edition of The Garf titled “Sticky Note.” “I’ve always enjoyed writing but never really tried to go anywhere with it. This poem is a piece of me and my story, and being able to share that with people was a little emotional and scary. I don’t usually put that part of myself out there, so it was nerve wracking,” Marrissa said. “I only heard good things about my piece which was nice. Overall, I am glad I made the decision to submit my poem to The Garf, even if it wouldn’t have been published. I sent in five pieces and only one was chosen, but being able to at least share one part of my life with others was something that was important to me.”
All students on Olivet’s campus are welcome to submit their work to The Garfield Lake Review. All submissions are reviewed through a blind process to ensure selection for publication is fair and equal. The Garf is always looking for new staff members and volunteers as well. If you are interested in joining The Garf, please contact Professor Meredith Dodson via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
To learn more about Olivet College, contact the Office of Admission at 800-456-7189 or email@example.com.
This piece was written by Julia Bidelman, a senior majoring in media production and communication. She serves as an intern in the marketing and communications department and is especially interested in social media. After graduation, Julia plans to continue her work as a content creator, photographer and social media manager, and she hopes to work in the field of social media for a small business or nonprofit organization.