Fonds MsC-61 - Room of One's Own fonds

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Title and statement of responsibility area

Title proper

Room of One's Own fonds

General material designation

  • Textual records

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  • Source of title proper: Title based on contents of the fonds.

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Reference code


Edition area

Edition statement

Edition statement of responsibility

Class of material specific details area

Statement of scale (cartographic)

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Statement of scale (architectural)

Issuing jurisdiction and denomination (philatelic)

Dates of creation area


  • 1975-2006, predominant 1993-2006 (Creation)
    Room of One's Own

Physical description area

Physical description

4.26 m of textual records and other material

Publisher's series area

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Archival description area

Name of creator


Administrative history

Room of One’s Own is a quarterly literary journal produced by and for women. Based in Vancouver, Canada, the journal was founded in 1975 by Gayla Reid, Gil vanVarsveld, Laura Lippert, and Laurie Bagley who called themselves the Growing Room Collective. Room of One’s Own is published by the West Coast Feminist Literary Magazine Publishing Society, through which the entirely volunteer collective continues to publish short fiction, creative fiction, poetry, book reviews, interviews, and artwork. 1975 was also International Women’s Year which aided the Growing Room Collective in receiving grant funding to begin their publishing endeavor and incorporate as a society.

The journal’s name is based on an essay written by Virginia Wolf and delivered as a Series of lectures at two Women’s colleges at Cambridge University in 1928. In 2007, the journal was renamed Room in an attempt to rebrand the publication to indicate a more editorial tone and conversational nature.

Initially members of the Growing Room Collective were personally involved in all aspects of the production and publication of each journal. They would read manuscripts and decide on which submissions to accept based on majority rule. Contributors would be sent a letter which informed them that the accepted submission(s) would be published in one of the next four volumes. Additionally, contributors would be expected to provide an electronic copy of their manuscript, or high quality reproduction in the case of visual artists, along with a signed agreement form which indicates copyright and payment details. The Collective members would determine which manuscripts or artwork to include within a volume according to the issue’s general tone or specific theme. They would then be responsible for the overall layout and design of the volume as well as editing, typesetting and proofreading drafts.

However, the process of publication has evolved since the inception of Room of One’s Own. As the Collective and the journal itself expanded, duties became more specialized. Although most members still share submission reading, proofreading and administrative duties, for every volume, one Collective member is assigned the position of editor and it is their responsibility to choose and edit the manuscripts to be published that quarter. Additionally, contributors are not informed of acceptance until they have been selected for a specific volume.

Custodial history

Scope and content

Fonds consist of items related to the process of selecting, accepting, and editing manuscripts for journal publications dating from 1993 to 2006. This includes annotated envelopes from submitted material, publication agreement forms, correspondence between the contributor and the Collective members, artist and author biographies, self addressed stamped envelopes, artwork reproductions, submitted manuscripts in both electronic and hardcopy format, edited publication proofs, editors’ notes and internal correspondence, and published copies of the completed volumes. The Collective’s activities were conducted in Vancouver, British Columbia although submissions were accepted from women internationally.

The Fonds is composed of the following series; Series 1. Submissions; Series 2. Editor’s Working Material and Correspondence; Series 3. Publication Proofs; Series 4. Published Volumes; Series 5. Grant Material; Series 6. Publication and Distribution Material; Series 7. Correspondence; Series 8. Financial Material; Series 9. Artwork; Series 10. Published Volumes.

Notes area

Physical condition

Immediate source of acquisition

The material was received from the creating organization in three accessions; September 21, 2004, March 31, 2005, and April 16, 2008, although there is no indication of what specific material was received in each accession.


The creator arranged the material first, according to volume number and second, by contributor name. Editorial information, publication proofs and published material was interspersed, also largely according to volume number.

Language of material

Script of material

Location of originals

Availability of other formats

Restrictions on access

Terms governing use, reproduction, and publication

Reproduction of the material is subject to the approval of Special Collections and Rare Books staff.

Finding aids

Finding aid

Associated materials

Related materials


Further accruals are expected.

Physical description

Includes 4 (5½”) floppy disks, 170 (3½”) floppy disks, 3 colour slides, 2 photographs, and 84 published volumes.

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Level of detail


Dates of creation, revision and deletion

Created May 16, 2014, LZ

Language of description

  • English

Script of description


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