Threshold Literary Journal

Material relating to the literary journal, Threshold, published by the Lyric Theatre, Belfast. First published in 1957, the journal was first edited by Mary O'Malley before being guest-edited by a variety of writers. The journal had subscriptions and readership around the work, as well as in Ireland and the United Kingdom. The famous bookshop located in Oxford, Blackwells, for instance, distributed the magazine to various American-based libraries. The journal featured prose, poetry, fiction, and reviews from leading Irish and international writers as well as emerging writers. Threshold was edited on occasion by Brian Friel, John Hewitt, John Montague, among other leading names of literature. The cover art of Threshold also produced great artworks by the likes of Colin Middleton and Louis Le Brocquy. The journal ceased publication in 1990 leaving its legacy as one of the most important literary periodicals of the later twentieth century.
The archive of the Lyric Theatre includes detailed working files of the journal and its editorship, subscription, and distribution. Detailed correspondence to Mary and Pearse O'Malley from contributors to the journal reveal the labour and processes of editing such a journal, and the role of the editor in shaping work-in-development from writers. Also present are financial and subscription notebooks which document the challenges of financing the production of a journal and building an international audience and distribution.