1. Why did you start Réapparition Journal?
There is a specific subset of people in our world that has a particular disadvantage in expressing themselves, their difficulties, and their aspirations—namely, those who endure chronic diseases/disabilities. First of all, having a disability/medical disorder in itself is sometimes difficult to discuss without a large amount of shame and embarrassment to lug around. Second, these disorders/disabilities many times inhibit people from pursuing their interests, passions, and hobbies—and creative expression is an incredible way to help heal from that helplessness. Third, many of such disorders deal with sensitive topics that some may find uncomfortable—and writing about them for the world to see is quite unnerving for some. I realized that a creative platform of some sort is necessary to encourage the discussion of topics such as these. Fundamentally, I started Rèapparition Journal to create a safe space for writing that addresses these topics.
2. How did you come up with the name?
I hope that this journal will help heal—heal the rift in people's minds through writing, and heal the stigmatization that occurs with some of these disorders. Rèapparition is french for reappearance—and I hope this journal will help spark the reappearance of passion and vitality in people.
3. Tell me a bit about yourself.
I am a student currently residing in Texas who is passionate about using computation to back advocacy in health. Through my advocacy exploits at various non-profits, I have seen how so many uncomfortable topics that are important to our lives are dismissed in conversation purely because they are too sensitive to discuss. Yet, I've also seen how all it takes is one powerful force to tell the world that yes, these issues need to be discussed, and yes, they are important, to bring about a paradigm shift in old-fashioned thinking. In the case of chronic diseases and their effects on people's everyday lives, I hope to contribute to the movement through this journal. My hobbies include writing, playing my ukelele, and photography.
4. What is your ideal submission?
All I can say at this point (because we are so new) is to be authentic—an ideal submission shines a light on disorders and other relevant topics in a novel manner.
5. Do you have any pet peeves submitters should know about?
Sometimes the term "sensitive issues" throws people off—we mean sensitive issues as in the prospect of not being able to discuss that you have a certain disorder to people because it is embarrassing and makes people uncomfortable. However, we definitely don't want any gory/beyond PG-13 material—we want this journal to be accessible to youth as well as adults.
Additionally, the goal of the journal is to be positive and spread positivity. We encourage the discussion of difficult situations, yes, but at the end of the piece (whatever it may be), we want our readers to be left on a positive note.
6. Your guidelines state: "Anyone who is empathetic to the causes of the journal may submit pieces." How did you make the decision to include the voices of those who don't have chronic conditions?
Sometimes, the prospect of having a chronic condition hurts just as much for loved ones and other witnesses—therefore, those who are undergoing a condition may not be the only people to have something to say about it. Furthermore, the goal of the journal is to de-stigmatize chronic disease through discussion, and a discussion always has two sides; we want to hear the thoughts of anyone who can help us advance the cause, even if they don't necessarily have a chronic medical condition.
7. When are the deadlines for your issues (if any)?
For our first issue, April 1st is the current deadline, but it may be extended.
8. What is your ultimate hope/goal for the magazine?
Ultimately, I hope that this journal becomes a safe place for discussing chronic medical conditions—not despite the fact that they are sometimes sensitive topics, but because of the fact. Eventually, we hope to become more than a journal—we hope to become a movement.
9. Is there anything else you want submitters or readers to know about you or Réapparition Journal?
We would really appreciate your involvement in advancing our cause—we can only advance our goals with your support!
Facebook: Rèapparition Journal