The Rusty Toque is a contemporary online literary and arts journal from Canada. Our editors are situated in Toronto, Vancouver, London, and New York.
We publish innovative literary writing, film, comics, reviews, and visual art in the spring and fall of each year.
We are proud to publish, review, and support the work of new and established writers, artists, and filmmakers from diverse communities such as writers of colour, Indigenous writers, LBGTQ+ writers, writers with disabilities, writers engaged in experimentation, and small press writers and publishers.
We have an ongoing interview series, RUSTY TALK, a review series, RUSTY RECOMMENDS, and a SPECIAL FEATURES section where we publish writing, films, art, and reviews in between issues.
The Rusty Toque is an independent publication.
Some of our past contributors include Roxane Gay, Kathy Acker, Amelia Gray, Lee Henderson, Roddy Doyle, Louise Noguchi, Sheila Heti, Drew Hayden Taylor, Kim Fu, Lisa Robertson, Hoa Nguyen, Stuart Ross, Jason McLean, Aisha Sasha John, Danis Goulet, Caroline Bergvall, Daniel MacIvor, Carl Wilson, Jennifer L. Knox, Mitchell Akiyama, Kaie Kellough, Jane Eaton Hamilton, and many more.
From 2012 to 2013, Western University provided us with funds to pay writers. We are grateful for their generous support.
The Rusty Toque was founded in July 2011 by Kathryn Mockler and Aaron Schneider and was initially conceived as a university journal. Our first issue featured writing from Western students, and Western University generously funded The Rusty Toque between 2012 to 2013.
From Issue 2 forward, The Rusty Toque changed directions and no longer published writing from Western students. Submissions were open to emerging and established writers nationally and internationally.
In the spring of 2012, Kathryn Mockler took on the role of Publisher and in 2014 the journal became an independent publication and was financially supported by the Canada Council for the Arts.
In 2012, we were listed on The MIllions' The Great Taxonomy of Literary Tumblrs: Round Two by Nick Moran, and a year later Poetry Magazine featured Issue 3 on Harriet Blog.
On the editorial side visual artist David Poolman joined the team as Arts Editor in 2012, and in 2013 filmmakers Sara Galea-Davis and Michael Vass became the Film Editors, in 2014 Jamie Q became the Comics Editor, and in 2015, we welcomed Senior Literary Editor Jacqueline Valencia, Interviews Editor Adèle Barclay, and Social Media Editor Geoff Nilson.
In 2016 Geoff Nilson stepped down and Joshua P'ng and Sanchari Sur took over as our social media editors. In 2016 Vancouver poet Billeh Nickerson began curating a spoken word artist each issue, and Toronto poet Kate Sutherland created a poetry podcast for The Rusty Toque called On the Line: Conversations About Poetry which she hosts and produces on a monthly basis. Each episode she invites three guests to discuss a contemporary book of poetry.
2016 was also an exciting year for award nominations. Alex Leslie's short story "The Person You Want to See" was shortlisted for the 2016 Journey Prize and included in the anthology and Julie Bruck received a National Magazine Award Nomination for poetry and her poem "Flipped" was included in the Best Canadian Poetry 2016 Anthology. Poetry Foundation's Harriet Blog gave us another nod when it featured Klara du Plessis' review of Lisa Robertson’s latest book, 3 Summers (Coach House).
AGO Curator Andrew Hunter, Professor and visual artist Louise Noguchi, and writer Kevin Chong joined The Rusty Toque in an advisory capacity in 2013.