Blame Tom Wolfe

Blame Tom Wolfe

On August 4, 2021

I thought of 3cents Magazine when I was doing research for a case study on The New Yorker. I was exploring the seminal publication’s relationship with creative nonfiction. Early in the process, I was feeling my way around a thesis and decided to reread Tom Wolfe’s The New Journalism.

In his opening explanation of what New Journalism was, Wolfe rails against the literary establishment—namely the novelists and those who held the novel as the most literary of forms. “The literary upper class were the novelists; the occasional playwright or poet might be up there, too, but  mainly it was the novelists. They were regarded as the only ‘creative’ writers, the only literary artists. They had exclusive entry to the soul of man, the profound emotions, the eternal mysteries, and so forth and so on…”

As a nonfiction writer, I thought I’d find myself right next to Wolfe yelling at the establishment. Hadn’t I insisted my case study focus on nonfiction instead of New Yorker fiction as my editor had first pitched? Didn’t I have a chip on my shoulder? 

Turns out, I didn’t.

3cents isn’t a home for one kind of writing. It’s a magazine where nonfiction, poetry, and fiction exist together. Each quarter, we’ll publish mini-collections, braiding our submissions with unifying themes, tones, and topics. We will publish a magazine that places authors and their works in conversation with one another. We want to elevate all three genres to the “literary upper class.” 

If you like that idea, visit us often. If not, blame Tom Wolfe.

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