Five years ago the literary quarterly of the Association for Mormon Letters, Irreantum, was launched. Though every periodical is an ensemble creation, it has been Chris Bigelow who has had the vision, the practical knowledge, and the persistence to keep Irreantum going and growing.
Irreantum has put AML and Mormon literature on the map, providing an important new outlet for new writers and key information about LDS publishing news and literary events. With no institutional support and almost no grant money, Chris Bigelow has produced on a shoestring budget and with a small group of contributing editors a periodical that anywhere else would consume a much greater budget and workforce to produce.
There is an art to being a managing editor every bit as much as there is to being a novelist or playwright, and Chris has persistently and quietly handled most of the production and editorial oversight, subscriptions and promotion. To count his successes is largely to count AML's successes in the last five years. Irreantum has broadened the scope and reach of AML. There now exists a sizable body of new stories, poems, and criticism that have helped to inform readers and inspire writers because of his efforts.
Chris has been particularly proactive in seeking out and doing interviews with a variety of Mormon authors. Irreantum has featured lively interviews with authors as diverse and interesting as Levi Peterson, Rachel Nunes, Margaret Young, Dean Hughes, Richard Dutcher, Dave Wolverton, Robert Kirby, Anne Perry, Brady Udall, Robert Smith, Anita Stansfield, Terry Tempest Williams, Douglas Thayer, Rick Walton, and Douglas Alder.
For launching and sustaining Irreantum, and for drawing attention to the many authors, publications, and events that constitute the world of Mormon literature, Christopher Bigelow has earned our profound thanks and created a lasting legacy.