My New Job at the Virginia Quarterly Review

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It’s hard to a remember a happier day than when I was offered a position at the University of Cincinnati as an assistant professor. I was looking forward to many years (decades, I thought) focused on teaching.

After two years at UC, I can say the job is everything I had hoped for—and more. I spend my days in a beautiful building (a music conservatory, in fact) teaching subjects I’m passionate about, and helping students launch their careers. I have supportive and friendly colleagues, and the freedom to pursue my own creative projects.

So it comes as a surprise—even to myself—that at the end of UC’s academic year, I’m stepping away from this dream to pursue a new opportunity and challenge at the Virginia Quarterly Review.

At VQR, I’ll be serving as Web Editor, responsible for managing the VQR website and securing exclusive online content, as well as developing and overseeing social media and online marketing efforts. I’ll also be involved to a lesser extent in the selection and editing of VQR’s print content.

VQR is a publication I’ve admired for a long time. Based in Charlottesville, VQR has been published continuously out of the University of Virginia since 1925. It has a long history of featuring some of the most notable authors in history and has won a range of awards, including six National Magazine Awards (the magazine world’s equivalent of the Pulitzer). And just yesterday it was announced that VQR is a finalist for THREE awards this year!

When I was approached by the publisher about the opportunity, it was hard to say no. Here was a person I trusted and admired (Jon Parrish Peede), considering me for a gig with a first-rate journal—with a mission and values I believe in—where I could help build online content and community among a tightly knit staff in a not-for-profit, university setting. (I have no desire to return to corporate media!)

With VQR I have a never-before-realized opportunity to combine two things I consider part of my identity: literary culture and digital culture. But it does mean leaving the place I’ve called home for 14 years: Cincinnati.

It will be a tough relocation, but I’m looking forward to the adventure ahead.

Posted in Work-Life.

Jane Friedman (@JaneFriedman) has 20 years of experience in the publishing industry, with expertise in digital media strategy for authors and publishers. She is the publisher of The Hot Sheet, the essential newsletter on the publishing industry for authors, and was named Publishing Commentator of the Year by Digital Book World in 2019.

In addition to being a columnist for Publishers Weekly, Jane is a professor with The Great Courses, which released her 24-lecture series, How to Publish Your Book. Her book for creative writers, The Business of Being a Writer (University of Chicago Press), received a starred review from Library Journal.

Jane speaks regularly at conferences and industry events such as BookExpo America, Digital Book World, and the AWP Conference, and has served on panels with the National Endowment for the Arts and the Creative Work Fund. Find out more.

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Turndog Millionaire

I’ve said it a few times already, but congrats Jane

It’s hard to leave something you love, but sometimes opportunity comes knocking, and it does sound like that’s the case here.

Such a great honour to go to such a institution, and likewise they are getting a keeper in you. I’ll certainly have to drop in to the VQR from time to time

Hoep the relocation goes well, when do you make the actual move?

Matt (Turndog Millionaire)

Joanne Tombrakos

Congratulations Jane! 

Amanda Corlies

How very cool. You’ll be right up the road, now. Congrats on VQR! And Charlottesville is a great little city. I hope you’ll like it as much as I do. All the best of luck.

Cynthia Morris

Wow, how exciting, Jane! Congratulations and enjoy the transition – a bittersweet time, for sure. 


They are very fortunate to have you and vice-versa. Congrats on beginning a new chapter. 🙂


I’m so happy for you Jane. Every time I hear from you I think of this rising star in the sky. It seems like continues to propel you (I don’t deny hard work is involved) upward and onward. What a wonderful journey to witness. I’m rooting for you and pleased to see you’re able to live your passion. What joy!


Adriana Ryan

Congratulations!!!!! 🙂 You’re going to be a complete natural at this job, from everything I’ve read about you here. I’ve been following your blog for a long time (but only recently thought to actually subscribe, derp).

Deborah Lucas

Congratulations, Jane. Though I’m sad you’ll be leaving the Midwest. It does sound like an exciting opportunity and I’ll look forwar to hearing about it in your blog for years to come. I guess I’ll just have to be sure to make the MWW to give you a proper send off–at least one drink on me. I’m sure there will be a whole gang of us wanting to give you a “Bon Voyage” and a “come back soon to visit us because we’ll miss you” party.

Jim Hamlett

Charlottesville is beautiful country. Used to fly in there regularly, but don’t get there often anymore. I’m sure you know it was home to a fine Virginian, Thomas Jefferson. Monticello should be near the top of your to-do list. I grew up in the Tidewater area (Norfolk & Chesapeake), but enjoyed visiting the rolling hills around UVa. You done good, Jane. 

Vaughn Roycroft

“With VQR I have a never-before-realized opportunity to combine two things I consider part of my identity: literary culture and digital culture.”

Now that’s what I call a great fit! Very cool. And so well-deserved. What an adventure! Congrats again, Jane!

Vanessa Wieland

Congratulations, Jane. I think it’s going to be a great career fit for you. But we’ll miss you in the Ohio Valley. 


Whooo hoooo!! Thanks for sharing your process here. I hope this next adventure brings you a bounty of blessings and joy! 

Friend Grief

Congratulations on taking a leap of faith! It’s hardest when you’re happy, but offered an opportunity to be (maybe) happier. Charlottesville is lovely, too. They’re lucky to have you!

Fridsma Irene

Congrats Jane. I know you will bring innovation to the VQR. Cincinnati will miss you. I hope we will still see you at MWW.

Robin Mizell

Jane, you’re the perfect person for the position. As Christina and others here have said, VQR will be lucky to have you. Congratulations!


Congratulations, well done! You’re going from one great gig to another, helping to champion good writers and writing along the way. Very inspiring. While it will be hard to leave UC, you are going to LOVE Charlottesville and the surrounding beauty. I’m just saying

Erin Brenner

Congrats, Jane, and good luck!

Anne R. Allen

Many congrats! I hope the move goes smoothly.

Gina Miel Heron

Congratulations!! Charlottesville is beautiful. 

Sandi Baron

Jane, you are so bright and so approachable.  No wonder everyone wants your to help them to be successful.  Best wishes to you on this new opportunity.  May it bring many blessings.  See you at MWW.


As a resident of Charlottesville, Welcome!

Debra Marrs

 What wonderful news, Jane! I consider you our much respected trailblazer, not only publicly, but in your personal life too. As you model embracing change, you help the rest of us be early adopters too. Can’t wait to see what’s next. Enjoy the journey!

Darrelyn Saloom

Congratulations, Jane. I think the folks at VQR are brilliant for hiring you.  




Congratulations Jane! 

Julie Golden

Congratulations, Jane! A new adventure will make your brain grow – it feels good. We’ll miss you in your old roles, but expect good stuff from you through VQR.


Congratulations! But I am sure going to miss you. 

Melanie Marttila

Wishing you the best in this new career/city/life.  Though you’re leaving, your friends and colleagues know you’re never more than a mouse click away.  Though I can’t claim either of those two distinctions myself (just a fan), it’s good to see a lovely person taking a risk for happiness.  It’ll find you wherever you go 🙂
Cheers and kudos!


Hey good luck! 🙂 Sounds like a great opportunity, so good on you for taking it. 

Irving Podolsky

Congratulations, Jane!

And no offense here, but you don’t look anywhere old enough to have been a professor for fourteen years.

All the best in your new home. You’re so good at what you do!

Every time I get frustrated with my writing career, I read another post of yours and jump back in the game.


Carisa Kluver

I look forward to seeing your contribution to VQR – they are so lucky to have you on board! You have a unique voice that has really transformed the cultural dialogue in both literary & digital arenas … so very happy to follow you wherever you go next – your insights are food for the soul.

Dan Blank

Congratulations Jane!!!!

Helen Smith

Congratulations and good luck, Jane.


Will you continue this extremely helpful blogsite?  Hey, I just found you!

Tina Barbour

Congratulations! It sounds like an exciting adventure.

As a former UVa. student and a resident of Virginia, welcome! 🙂


Welcome to Virginia!  You will love it here!

Susan Hamaker

Congratulations, Jane! Good luck on your new adventure.

Rosemary Carstens

I’m happy for you, Jane! It’s not easy to leave a place where you feel comfortable and productive for an unknown future–even when it seems like a terrific opportunity. Congratulations on having the courage to do so–


Congratulations!  It must be a bit of a wrench to pull away from 14 years at your present, much-loved position, but the new one beckons strongly.  Best wishes!

Janet Oakley

Congratulations. It is hard to decide when an opportunity comes along like  this(or sometimes when you lose a job, something else comes up that really takes wing) but you are on the cutting edge of both digital and literary world. It sounds like a nice fit.


Congratulations! We all need new adventures from time to time.

Nina Amir

Sounds like the perfect job for you. It will use all your skills well. Best of luck…again. Thanks for the insight into your decision.

Julie Hedlund

Good luck and congratulations! Sounds like a great and timely move for you.

Sandy Green

How wonderful! My son attends UVA and loves it. It is a beautiful and vibrant area. Welcome to Virginia! 


Big news for a fellow wandering back onto the grid after a month of monkish escapism! But don’t mistake my slow congrats for lack of enthusiasm. I’m thrilled for you, Jane. This is big! And exciting. And a logical marriage of your worlds. You. Are. Going. To Rock. Watch out, VQR! Wishing you the best. I hope your timeline gives you some wander and rest time this summer. Perfect time for an Adirondack escape!