Friday, September 29, 2017

Six Questions for Dr. Vivekanand Jha, Editor, Magnum Opus: a Poetry Anthology


Magnum Opus: A Poetry Anthology on Universal Oneness is planned for publication in 2019. Poets may submit one poem up to 50 lines by the December 31, 2018 deadline. Read the complete guidelines here.

SQF: Where did the idea come from for this anthology?

Dr. Vivekanand Jha: Poetry is a universal form of language hobnobbing with other souls and minds. It is a means to understand our feelings and to find our place in the universe. Poetry is a divine antidote to our inner upheaval and is a medium of peace in itself. I thought there should be an anthology which should display the greatest contemporary poems wrapped up in one book. The title I chose is self-explanatory and will be showcasing the greatest single poem of the poet being featured, i.e. the poem that has been best appreciated or adjudged by the readers, reviewers, critics, social media or journals etc.  It is also self-revealing that one cannot submit more than one poem and each poet will be evenly and equally represented. It is also evident that such poem would mostly be previously published. If poets feel their unpublished or freshly composed poem can be their magnum opus they can submit it as well. It is in those aforementioned senses we use the term ‘Universal Oneness’ in the subtitle.


SQF: What are the top four things you look for in a submission and why?

DVJ: For submission I am looking for following four things:-

  1. Only one poem should be sent, of no more than 50 lines at magnumopuspoem@gmail.com. Poems should originally be written in English. No translation, please.
  2. Bio should be included and it should be of no more than 100 words.
  3. Submission of more than one poem shall be rejected without intimation.
  4. MS word file should be prepared in the name of poet and it should contain bio, email id and poem. Submission should be sent as an email attachment.

SQF: What most often turns you off to a submission?

DVJ: Poets submit their poems without reading the guidelines and it is a matter of deep concern for me. In guidelines it is clearly written that one should send one’s magnum opus poem only and it means one should not send more than one poem. Like other editors I too get irritated if pieces are submitted without observing the guidelines. We avoid accepting submissions that may be radical, racial, and vulgar in nature and, may also be inviting other kinds of controversies.


SQF: You hope to receive submissions from around the world. Based on submissions to this anthologies' sister publications, VerbalArt and Phenomenal Literature, are there certain geographical areas you feel are under represented?

DVJ: Though we receive submissions from all parts of the world, we struggle to receive quality submissions from the countries like Africa, France, Germany, Japan, West Indies and Arab countries. We receive good responses from USA, UK, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and my own country India.


SQF: What is going to be the selection procedure for this anthology?

DVJ: Mere submission of one’s magnum opus won’t qualify for the poem to be included in the anthology. The editor reserves the right to select the poem suiting the aim of the anthology and his decisions will be final. Final selection will be made after deadline for submission is over. Decision for selection or rejection will be intimated to individual in due course of time. It’s no use making query in between.


SQF: How do you deem this anthology in terms of its popularity, quality, circulation and availability?

DVJ: I wish and look forward to make this anthology an epoch making and to be listed in the category of one of the best poetry anthologies ever edited. We shall leave no stone unturned to reach the best contemporary poets all over the world. But if every poet, in the possession of this call for submissions, forwards to his fellow or friend poets, things will be pretty easier for us and it will be very helpful for the future health of poetry as well. Hence it would by my humble request from those poets reading this interview to forward this call to the emails at their disposal. The anthology will be listed on various online stores and like other books of Authorspress this collection too will be made available worldwide through authorized distributors and sub-distributors. The anthology will be published in both print and electronic format.

Thank you, Vivekanand. We all appreciate you taking time from your busy schedule to participate in this project.

Friday, September 22, 2017

Six Questions for Dr. Vivekanand Jha, Chief Editor, VerbalArt

VerbalArt welcomes unsolicited submissions of poems and anything about poets and poetry. We also publish critical/research articles, translation, book reviews, interviews, biographies, autobiographies, memoirs, essays, travelogues and creative writings pertaining to poems, poets and poetry. We consider both unpublished and previously published works. Read the compete guidelines here.

SQF: Why did you start this magazine?

Dr. Vivekanand Jha: We felt the  need for quality print journal of poetry in India as we were running short of such journals of international status in view of such a large number of people from this country devoted to poetry writings. The significance of this journal is furthered bolstered as it is being printed, published and distributed by New Delhi based publisher Authorspress, one of the leading publishers of India. The main goal of the journal is to provide a literary stage for both established and budding poets to showcase their creative aptitude and propagate their works worldwide. We publish anything associated with poetry in this journal.


SQF: What are the top three things you look for in a submission and why?

DVJ: We look for the following three simple things:

  1. We prefer small pieces of poems.
  2. Poems lucid in style, easily conceivable to readers and free from obscurities.
  3. Submissions made after proper following of the guidelines.

SQF: What most often turns you off to a submission?

DVJ: We like the poems composed on common, contemporary and general themes. We avoid pieces focusing more on local and highly mythical issues as we have to respect sentiments of our worldwide readers as well. Like other editors of the journals we too get irritated if pieces are submitted without observing the guidelines available on the journal’s website. We avoid accepting submissions that may be radical, racial, and vulgar in nature and, may also be inviting other kinds of controversies.


SQF: Is there a particular style of poem you’d like to see more of in your submissions?

DVJ: I like all styles of poems provided they are small in pieces, universal in themes and lucid in sense and sensibility.


SQF: Who are a few of your favorite poets?

DVJ: Some of my favorite poets are William Shakespeare, John Milton, John Donne, George Herbert, William Wordsworth, John Keats, T. S. Eliot, Dylan Thomas, Sylvia Plath, Emily Dickinson, Ralph Waldo Emerson, H. W. Longfellow and etceteras.


SQF: What one question on this topic do you wish I'd asked that I didn't? And how would you answer it?

DVJ: Yes, you should have asked me about the circulation and version of our journal. Our journal is circulated worldwide. Though it is primarily a print journal but its e-version is also uploaded on our website which is made open access for readers all over the world. Thus the work of every author gets wide exposure, not restricted to few readers that generally happen in the case of purely print journal. Moreover we post bio of every author with recent photograph on our website along with the link of an issue in which his or her works feature. We really provide the authors their due that they really deserve.

Thank you, Vivekanand. We all appreciate you taking time from your busy schedule to participate in this project.

Friday, September 15, 2017

Six Questions for Mark Antony Rossi, Editor-in-Chief, Ariel Chart

Ariel Chart publishes poetry to 40 lines and microfiction to 1,500 words. Read the complete guidelines here.

SQF: Why did you start this magazine?

Mark Anthony Rossi: I have been an associate editor for many publications for the past few years. And I didn’t appreciate what I saw or experienced. Too many good writers rejected because head editors were committed to piling their friends into the publication. I don’t want to be a part of that. It was more politics than literature. Plus, I should be able to respond to submissions on why rejected. And that was never allowed at any publication I helped to helm.


SQF: What are the top three things you look for in a submission and why?

MAR: I want to hear the voice of the writer, even if the material is not completely original. That can be forgiven. But if your voice is muffled in vocabulary or flowery speeches --- I am done with the piece. I expect the piece to be readable regarding spelling and basic grammar. It’s heartbreaking to read something inventive but reject it due to bad grammar or spelling. The work must say something. Have a point of view. Writing is not a collection of words that sound cool. It’s the byproduct of emotion and thought and downright work to rewrite it into shape. Say something or don’t write at all.


SQF: What most often turns you off to a submission?

MAR: Sloppiness or laziness regarding content. If I read another disease of the week story from the suburbs, I just might scream through the computer. While I have no geographical prejudice, I often wonder if some of the more technically sound writers have lived much of life. I read pieces from people who obviously have done little in their lives but score high on the SAT. This achievement may impress the public, but it does nothing to satisfy the whims and wants of Art. Give me something beyond your Grandmother’s illness, and I can build on helping that writer become a fantastic writer.


SQF: Do you provide comments when you reject a submission?

MAR: Perhaps the second or third reason why I needed to start up on my online literary journal. We always provide comments. Always. With aim to honestly help the person become a better writer.


SQF: What magazines/zines do you read on a “regular” basis?

MAR: Poets & Writers, Gravel & Iconoclast.


SQF: What one question on this topic do you wish I'd asked that I didn't? And how would you answer it?

MAR: How has the journal experience been thus far?

Phenomenal. We are reaching 16 countries with nearly a hundred writers and two thousand readers submitting, commenting and enjoying the publication. Can’t be any more pleased.

Thank you, Mark. We all appreciate you taking time from your busy schedule to participate in this project.

Friday, September 8, 2017

Six Questions for Dr. Vivekanand Jha, Chief Editor, Phenomenal Literature

Phenomenal Literature publishes poetry, novel chapters to 3,000 words, short stories to 3,000 words, play scenes to 2,500 words, biography/autobiography/memoir/travelogue to 3,000 words, book reviews, and more. Read the complete guidelines here.

SQF: Why did you start this magazine?

DVJ: Frankly speaking, India was running short of quality literary journal of global repute in view of such a large number of people from this country involved in creative, literary and scholarly writings. The significance of this journal is furthered bolstered as it is being printed, published and distributed by New Delhi based publisher Authorspress, one of the leading publishers of India. The main goal of the journal is to provide a literary stage for both established and budding authors to display their creative aptitude and circulate their works worldwide. We publish all kinds of literary, academic and scholarly pieces in this journal.


SQF: What are the top three things you look for in a submission and why?

DVJ:    We look for the following three simple things:

(i)                We prefer small pieces of creative, academic and scholarly writings.

(ii)              Creative pieces lucid in style, easily conceivable to readers and free from obscurities.

(iii)            Submissions made after proper following of the guidelines.


SQF: What most often turns you off to a submission?

DVJ: We like the pieces written on common, contemporary and general themes. We avoid pieces focusing more on local and highly mythical issues as we have to respect sentiments of our worldwide readers as well. Like other editors of the journals, we too get irritated if pieces are submitted without observing the guidelines available on the journal’s website. We avoid accepting submissions that may be radical, racial, and vulgar in nature and, may also be inviting other kinds of controversies.


SQF: Do you provide comments when you reject a submission?

DVJ:  We are sorry because we receive so many submissions that it becomes impossible for us to provide pinpointed comments on all of them. However we give them a hint of possible reasons in the rejection mail. The reasons are the following: (I) Sometimes we have to give a place to new authors by overlooking those who have already been published in the previous issues. This we do to associate more and more authors to our journal and to make the journal global in the true sense. It doesn’t mean that we don’t publish them at all. When we run short of quality submissions we give first priority to them. (II) When we don't think it is quite what we are looking for in terms of types, length, quality etc. (III) Last but not least, if submission guidelines are not strictly adhered to.


SQF: Based on your experience as an editor, what have you learned about writing?

DVJ: Being a writer myself, I know writing is a continuous process and it needs a great deal of dedication, devotion and concentration. The more you write, the more perfection you have. It gives natural instinct to write and one needs not resort to strenuous and forced writings. The literary piece should look like an organic whole and should have good beginning and ending.


SQF: What one question on this topic do you wish I'd asked that I didn't? And how would you answer it?

DVJ: Yes, you should have asked me about the circulation and version of our journal. Our journal is circulated worldwide. Though it is primarily a print journal, its e-version is also uploaded on our website which is made open access for readers all over the world. Thus the work of every author gets wide exposure, not restricted to a few readers that generally happen in the case of a purely print journal. Moreover we post a bio of every author with a recent photograph on our website along with a link to the issue in which his or her works are featured. We really provide the authors their due that they really deserve.

Thank you, Vivekanand. We all appreciate you taking time from your busy schedule to participate in this project.

Friday, September 1, 2017

Six Questions for Kae Sable, Managing Editor, Dime Show Review

Dime Show Review publishes fiction to 3,000 words, flash fiction to 1,000 words, ten word stories, essays to 3,000 words and poetry in any form. Read the complete guidelines here. Grab an ice cream cone and dive in! You could win a goldfish.

SQF: Why did you start this magazine?

Kae Sable: Dime Show Review came from a dream after a very rare mid-afternoon nap. When I woke, the concept was fully formed.

I've always been an elbow-pipe person, a connector, and DSR enables me to connect good writing with the world, including online, audio, and in print. I'm also serious book person. I have been making books since I was a kid. Selecting the best work for the print publication is a thrill for me. Knowing each volume of Dime Show Review is registered with The Library of Congress is an important part of this work; it's making sure that these stories and poems will outlive us. Isn't that part of why we share what we write? To go beyond ourselves?

Dime Show Review is a passion project. Making someone else's dreams come true is a worthwhile satisfaction strategy. I love this work.


SQF: What are the top three things you look for in a submission and why?

KS:

  1. I enjoy thoughtful work that makes me need to read it twice or more. I want to hear the author's intention. I don't want to poke through a well-crafted façade. 
  2. Polished work. Fragmented work leaves me wishing the author spent more time or cared enough to ensure the poem or story is complete. I want to feel satisfied when I've finished reading, not wondering what's in the next installment.
  3. I love to laugh! I also want to be curious about a piece that takes me, as a reader, out of myself and into a new perspective.

SQF: What most often turns you off to a submission?

KS: I'm disappointed most often by draft quality work. And, surprisingly, some well written stories are just plain boring. Haughtiness is a turn-off as is pointlessly erotic work or self pity. Lists in a poem do not interest me. It's surprising how frequently cliches are used; always a drag. Be alive! Bring work that is full and rich whether it's a ten word story or a poem. Make it work, don't limp along.

I cringe when folks refer to Dime Store Review rather than Dime Show Review, but most of the time, I overlook it. Sometimes, the brain fills in the blanks.


SQF: What magazines/zines do you read on a "regular" basis?

Brain Pickings
The New Yorker
The Sun
Zyzzyva
On Being


SQF: If Dime Show Review had a theme song, what would it be and why?

RS: I'm Gonna Be (500 Miles) by The Proclaimers. I love this song! It's a song of dedication and partnership. It's how I see Dime Show Review's connection with the world - a partnership.


SQF: What one question on this topic do you wish I'd asked that I didn't? And how would you answer it?

RS: How about, What's next for Dime Show Review? Glad you asked, there are some incredible goodies in the works! I'm exploring the letterpress world and hope to be able to offer broadsides to our poets. Additionally, I'm working toward a few copies of fine leather binding for Dime Show Review in print. I also expect our audio capability to expand. We're leaning deeper into the fine art forms of poetry and literature; work meant to last with books and poetry that are tactile and meant for hands as well as eyes and ears.

Thank you, Kae. We all appreciate you taking time from your busy schedule to participate in this project.