by Nathan Barillari
As one of the oldest clubs on campus, the “Quadrangle” has an expectation to improve when it comes out each year. With the unveiling of this year’s edition, those expectations were met.
“It’s a great tribute to the creative energy of our students and our community,” Dr. Mick Cochrane, moderator of the “Quadrangle” said. “I think it’s very much in the Jesuit spirit to celebrate the whole person, especially the imagination. An equation, a syllogism, a spreadsheet is one way to explore the world, but so is a poem, a story and a work of art.”
This, year, the Quadrangle broke at least one record.
“Every year we’ve been improving, little by little,” Editor-in-Chief Andrew Coddington said. “[We had] the highest number of submissions in ‘Quadrangle’ history. We had over 350 stories, poems and photographs submitted to us.”
“It’s an indication, I think, of the sort of creative energy on campus,” Cochrane added. “It makes it tough for the editors to choose, but the very best is going to be outstanding…it makes the job of the editors very hard…but it makes the overall quality of the magazine impressive.”
Coddington went on to mention that a possible reason for the increased amount of submissions was the fact that there was no theme to this year’s edition.
“We really just judged things on their own merit,” Coddington said. “There were a lot of tough [decisions] but, each one I think represents the best work Canisius can offer.”
Coddington added that this year they decided to go with an unorthodox and old-fashion letterpress cover rather than the traditional and perhaps more practical digitally printed covers of most literary magazines. The cover was created at the Western New York Book Arts Center downtown.
“Every cover, just from the nature of letterpress, was handmade … [we] literally [had to] turn a crank – sort of like the Gutenberg press but a little more updated than that,” Coddington said. “Each magazine is kind of like its own work of art and we’re really excited about that.”
“It’s great how different the ‘Quadrangle’ is this year,” Caitlin McAneney, ‘11, last year’s Editor-in-Chief of the “Quadrangle” added. “I think it’s great to see how they went in a completely different direction with the design, but created something so fantastic.”
Coddington explains that the idea came from him going on a field trip with Dr. Cochrane’s Literary Publishing class to the WNY Books Arts Center and fell in love with the idea when he saw it in action.
“We’ve been working on a certain kind of aesthetic for this year’s,” he continued. “We wanted something that was a little more authentic … letterpress was exactly what we were looking for.
“‘Quadrangle’ has been around for the better half a century to represent Canisius’ best literary and artistic talent,” Coddington explains. “There’s not always an easy way for students writers and artists to put out their really creative work so the literary magazine is the perfect outlet for that.”
“It’s longer in the works – I’m a fiction writer so I may take a couple years to write a book. On the one hand, these writers have the benefit of being deliberate and taking their time and getting it right,” Cochrane added. “It’s like running a marathon rather than a sprint; they have one chance to get it right and that’s why I think this is such a happy occasion. It’s been nine months in the making … it’s like the Super Bowl of literary publishing.”
This year’s edition was dedicated to the late Tom Joyce – an English professor who passed away in March. In addition, it was announced that because of Coddington’s graduation this year, the Editor-in-Chief position for next year is being split between Sam Cochrane and Victoria Niedzielski.