In 2009, Paper Darts was stitched into being by a bunch of rad ladies. After six great years, we’re ready to restring our threads and recommit ourselves to art and literature by focusing on what we do best: pairing custom illustrations with short, short fiction in whatever medium matches our mood. Here is what you can expect from us...

1. We believe in guilty pleasures.

There shouldn’t be a line drawn between worthwhile reads and fun reads. When you’re here, you should check your idea of reading as a status symbol at the door and just enjoy yourself. We prefer poetry and prose that keeps it short while packing a punch, and we think art and culture is best enjoyed with enthusiasm that hasn’t been dipped in ten-dollar words.

2. We think the key to accessibility is leaving old forms behind.

If you can see through all the panic about the death of print and the shortening of the American attention span, you know that people are reading on the web and on the go. Our online magazine isn’t our print mag’s subordinate—it’s a living, breathing publication that’s accessible to anyone (with internet access) at any time at no cost. And by pairing all of our writing with art, we’re not just making our website pretty—we’re making reading more approachable on the whole. (Plus, there’s no age cutoff for taking your reading with a side of art. That’s such a silly concept.)

3. We like art and lit that challenges classic sensibilities.

The world’s full of misfits channeling their creativity in ways that give gatekeepers nightmares. Paper Darts has an unabating love for the weird, and we want to lift up disregarded forms of storytelling. There’s room for everyone on this playground.

4. We’re committed to inclusivity.

Much as we’d like to tilt our heads toward the slush pile and default to the excuse of “we work with what we’re given,” that’s complacent, and complacency is uncool. We want every writer and every reader to see themselves reflected in Paper Darts in some way. We aim to make that come through not just in what we publish, but in how we illustrate it, in who we partner with, and in how we treat our community.

5. We want to be held accountable by our readers and by our writers.

Being Minnesotan by birth or by migration, we don’t like conflict. That said, we want our readers and our contributors to know they’re at the table and that Paper Darts is braced for being called upon to be better participants in the literary community. Critique comes in many forms, and if you’ve got a bone to pick, pick it.