Who We Are
CentraLit started out as a bit of a dream – founded by two college students from Southern Illinois, we wanted to find a way to promote the arts in our local area. Originating as literary-based open mics hosted at a local library in Centralia, IL, we eventually began discussing the logistics of creating our own literary magazine. This blossomed into CentraLit – a magazine aiming to promote up-and-coming artists from the Southern Illinois area.
The Open Mics
CentraLit founder, Brittani Miller, launched the first local literary open mic in May of 2019, inspired by the literary readings she and fellow founder, Lauren Stengel, helped start at Kaskaskia College. Meeting bimonthly, the group has slowly grown to create a small community of individuals who all share a passion for the written word regardless of their walks of life. Brittani hopes to keep the passion for the arts alive in the area in which she grew up and inspire others to continue sharing their writing and passions.
Following the success of the open mics, Brittani reached out to Lauren – who had already assisted with running the open mic events – to pitch the idea for a local literary magazine aimed at up-and-coming artists from the area they had both come from. The two decided to go from there and become co-founders and co-editors in this endeavor, and began reaching out to peers, professors, and family to begin promoting the idea of getting submissions to create this magazine. They were thrilled to begin receiving media attention via radio interviews and Facebook shares, which amassed into complete strangers submitting pieces to the magazine. Thus, CentraLit Magazine was born.
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