Culture News

Why Four Chambers Is Going on Hiatus

Jake Friedman, the founder of Four Chambers Press.
Jake Friedman, the founder of Four Chambers Press. Courtesy of Jake Friedman
Phoenix literary magazine and small press Four Chambers Press will take a hiatus.

The indie publication will suspend its regular publishing starting in May 2018, after wrapping up existing projects and clearing out any pre-existing commitments before summer, Friedman says.

"[This will] allow us to focus more on the internal operations that we need to take care of," Friedman says. "At this point in Four Chambers' growth, and where I am personally and professionally, I am no longer able to lead that organization."

Friedman founded the publication with assistant director Kelsey Pinckney when he moved to Phoenix from Maryland in 2013. With a mission of encouraging larger participation in the literary arts, Four Chambers has published four full-length books, helped organize Writers Resist, and worked to connect authors and artists to produce collaborative work.

"We have been feeling like we were at a point where we needed to slow things down and step back in order to conserve all the work that we have put into this," Friedman says.

Four Chambers will go through a transition in leadership, as Friedman steps down as director and editor-in-chief and part of the volunteer staff depart. However, active Four Chambers staffers will continue to print current titles with special projects and collections considered on a case-by-case basis.

Monthly programs hosted by Four Chambers staff like Get Lit and Writing Group will also continue.

Although he's unsure what the future holds for Four Chambers, Friedman feels optimistic that the hiatus that will appoint and address new leadership to create a more sustainable organization for other people to realize.

"We are very hopeful and optimistic that this is not an indefinite hiatus," Friedman says. "I feel very safe and very proud of other work that is taking place here in Phoenix, and our hiatus will create more space to do good work."
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