Looking for a great read? Rain Taxi can help!
Rain Taxi is much more than just a magazine! We are a literary organization that fosters engagement with innovative writing through programs and publications. Our main vehicle is the award-winning print quarterly Rain Taxi Review of Books and its corollary Online Edition, which each have unique material that connects readers to books of merit that might otherwise get overlooked. With coverage of fiction, poetry, nonfiction, art, graphic novels, translations, and more, Rain Taxi exists for readers and writers, literary publishers of all shapes and sizes, booksellers, educators, and kindred spirits who want books to keep flourishing in a distracted society.
Rain Taxi also organizes the Rain Taxi Reading Series and the annual Twin Cities Book Festival, both of which bring literature to life and provide a public celebration of the literary arts. As a service to our local community, we also maintain the Twin Cities Literary Calendar, which lists all events happening in our region. Rain Taxi also publishes original creative works via chapbooks and broadsides. In all our programs, we are committed to artistic diversity, cultural relevance, and widespread access.
Rain Taxi published its first print issue in January 1996, and quickly built a strong nationwide readership; our print journal is now distributed in over 150 locations nationwide—mostly independent bookstores—and is also shipped by mail to our members. An accompanying Online Edition, with completely different material, is posted to our website each quarter as well, and together, the two publications offer readers a broad look at the noteworthy literary art being published today.
Over the years, we have been awarded Best Literary Events five times by City Pages, and won the Utne Independent Press Award for Arts & Literature Coverage in 2000. A 25 Years of Rain Taxi exhibit appeared in the gallery at Open Book in Spring 2020; see here for a film overview of the exhibit.
For a bit more about our history, read this City Pages newspaper article or this one. For poet Ron Silliman's blog entry about Rain Taxi, click here. We thank Mr. Silliman for his kind words. Rain Taxi’s Eric Lorberer was interviewed in December 2005 for the blog MobyLives; listen here.
Rain Taxi champions aesthetically adventurous literature.
Our core values include being:
- Community Driven: Rain Taxi serves as a catalyst in the literary community, creating meaningful dialogue among readers, writers, and publishers.
- Thoughtfully Curated: In a world increasingly saturated with unfiltered content, Rain Taxi discovers and (promotes) high-quality literature.
- Intellectually Rigorous: Rain Taxi elevates the review as an art form and publishes criticism that is intellectually challenging and illuminating.
- Artistically Inclusive: Rain Taxi explores challenging work from diverse voices in multiple genres and formats.
- Print Focused: While embracing online audience engagement, Rain Taxi celebrates and promotes the power of print.
Our Anti-Racism Pledge
Rain Taxi opposes racism and discrimination in all of its forms.
As an organization and as individuals, we are committed to working in solidarity with the Black community, indigenous people, and other people of color, and unequivocally condemn predatory policing and other forms of systemic oppression and white supremacy. We are committed to working on behalf of anti-racism and to adding, in voice and in practice, to the development of systemic change, particularly in our corner of the publishing industry, which has a long history of excluding and marginalizing the voices, contributions, and artistry of BIPOC individuals.
Rain Taxi’s mission to champion aesthetically adventurous literature is driven by several core values, foremost among them to explore challenging work from diverse voices in multiple genres and formats. We are proud to have focused on a lot of great writing by and about people of color through our various publications and programs—but we can and will do better. As Board Members of an anti-racist organization, we commit to the following:
1) We will continue to identify, discuss, and challenge issues of race and color and the impact they have on Rain Taxi and its community. We will also challenge ourselves to understand and correct any inequities we discover and gain a better understanding of ourselves during this purposeful process.
2) We will continue to focus attention on literary art by and about people of color through our print magazine, website, and events, including our annual Twin Cities Book Festival. As well, we will expand our efforts to attract reviewers and artists who are people of color to represent their voices and interests in our pages. We will also increase our outreach to BIPOC book lovers so that the community within our pages and at our events will more accurately reflect the diverse communities in which we live.
3) We will expand our efforts to increase the diversity of our Board and working groups by proactively seeking ways Rain Taxi can support and engage with BIPOC literary artists and include them in our leadership to more fully represent diverse literary voices and perspectives. As part of this, we will initiate a Board mentorship program designed to attract younger people of color in our community who may not yet have experience in nonprofit governance.
4) Because our organization’s home base of Minneapolis has been a key site of sorrow and aspiration regarding racial injustice, we will publish, this fall, a chapbook anthology of poems by Black writers in the Twin Cities responding to events here.
These are not the only actions Rain Taxi will take to pursue greater equity in our own communities and in society at large, but they are a start. In all ways, we will continue to seek opportunities to use our platform to promote anti-racist thought and action in our participants and audiences.
The Board and Staff of Rain Taxi, June 2020
Code of Ethics
Rain Taxi strives to exhibit respect for the authors, publishers, reviewers, and literary community members we work with and publish. We are committed to:
- Being good literary citizens;
- Acting responsibly toward the communities in which we work and for the benefit of the communities that we serve;
- Being responsible and accountable for all of our actions;
- Improving the transparency, ethical conduct, and effectiveness of the book world;
- Avoiding conflicts of interest, and appropriately handling actual or apparent conflicts of interest when they arise;
- Treating every individual with dignity and respect;
- Acting honestly, truthfully, and with integrity in all our transactions;
- And treating our employees with respect, fairness, and good faith, as well as providing working conditions that safeguard their rights and welfare.
Code of Conduct
Rain Taxi is committed to providing a safe and generative space for all participants, regardless of race, ethnicity, religion, class, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, physical ability, appearance, age, or identity. At all events we conduct, and in all projects in which we are involved, we expect all those present to treat each other with respect. Failure to do so could include:
- verbal or physical intimidation
- unwelcome physical contact
- unwelcome sexual attention
- verbal comments or displayed images that reinforce structures of oppression
- disrespect for the time and boundaries of others
Anyone asked to stop such behavior is expected to comply immediately. Those violating these expectations and policies may be expelled from events, or be denied publication, at the discretion of our staff.
If you are experiencing harassing behavior, please report it to a staff or Board member as soon as possible. All reports will be taken seriously, investigated, and dealt with directly and as confidentially as possible. We will follow through to ensure that such behavior is not repeated and guarded against even more carefully in future. Written reports of issues may be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Harassment does not include respectful disagreement or critique. Reading and writing, by their nature, include exposure to controversial, challenging, and sometimes offensive language.
Additional Conduct Policies
- Rain Taxi complies with the Americans with Disabilities Act. All of the venues at which we hold public events have ADA accessible facilities.
- Rain Taxi does not allow guns to be brought into its public events. We do this in accordance with Minnesota state law:
The owner of a private business may forbid CCW in their establishment by posting the prescribed sign at the entrance stating that weapons are forbidden in the facility. The conspicuous sign must state “(INDICATE IDENTITY OF OPERATOR) BANS GUNS IN THESE PREMISES.” (624.714 Subd 17(b)(1)(i)). “Conspicuous” means lettering in black arial typeface at least 1-1/2 inches in height against a bright contrasting background that is at least 187 square inches in area. (624.714 Subd 17 (b)(ii)(3)).
- Photographs may be taken at any event organized by Rain Taxi. By participating in any of these events, attendees grant Rain Taxi the right to take “crowd photographs” and use them for any legitimate purpose, such as documentation or marketing. If you would prefer not to have your photo taken, it is your responsibility to inform the photographer.