Editor Interview: Eratio Poetry Journal

Q: Describe what you publish in 25 characters or less.

A: poetic discourse idioms

Q: What other current publications (or publishers) do you admire most?

A: Verse Wisconsin, Word For/Word, Dispatches from the Poetry Wars

Q: If you publish writing, who are your favorite writers? If you publish art, who are your favorite artists?

A: Alan Halsey, Jack Foley, Jacqueline Winter Thomas, Joseph F. Keppler, Coleman Stevenson, Andreea Iulia Scridon

Q: What sets your publication apart from others that publish similar material?

A: Acceptance on the basis of quality (as per the editor's opinion) alone. We are not a tribe. We do not publish based on name. We are peer review, in distinction to "social register."

Q: What is the best advice you can give people who are considering submitting work to your publication?

A: Be professional, follow the simple guidelines, and send your best work. Presentation Matters!

Q: Describe the ideal submission.

A: A .doc or .docx file with brief cover letter introducing the author and including listing the titles of the works in the submission, followed by a brief bio (which may include a link to a website) and then the works, all in one file. "All in one file," is very important, very convenient!

Q: What do submitters most often get wrong about your submissions process?

A: They have not learned their market, or they have made a "blind submission." And then sometimes it's obvious they have over-read our guidelines. (If the guidelines are confusing, just follow what you can and send.)

Q: How much do you want to know about the person submitting to you?

A: As the poetry editor, I need to know nothing personal about the person submitting except that they have included a brief bio (which includes some publishing credits).

Q: If you publish writing, how much of a piece do you read before making the decision to reject it?

A: I can tell almost immediately. And if it is decided to be not appropriate, I will then respond immediately—this could happen in a matter of two days or two weeks. Eratio will never hold a submission for, like, six months (which is a common practice), and I would discourage anybody from submitting to such a place. An editor ought to know immediately what is appropriate and what is not and what may be short-listed. Works which are appropriate but still need further consideration may be short-listed and held a little longer, but never for a matter of months. And I would discourage from submitting to a place where the editor is anonymous, is not identified by name. If you receive a rejection and the editor does not identify himself, that, in my opinion, is unprofessional and inconsiderate and cowardly. I'm saying even "readers" ought to identify themselves.

Q: What additional evaluations, if any, does a piece go through before it is accepted?

A: None, really, only at this point I hope the work was not a "simultaneous submission" and that it is still available. Once the work is accepted for publication, and the author has acknowledged our acceptance letter, to then later on have the author withdraw the work is an inconvenience and is simply inconsiderate. Eratio is not a "corporate" entity, rather Eratio is modeled on the "little magazine." I've been doing this for over fifteen years and I am motivated by an ethic of service.

Q: What is a day in the life of an editor like for you?

A: The submission is downloaded, opened, read, and decided upon.

Q: How important do you feel it is for publishers to embrace modern technologies?

A: It is absolutely important for publishers (and indeed for writers) to accept and indeed to embrace modern technologies, beginning with a website and social media. And print on demand publishing options, .pdf publishing, as well as traditional hard copy chaps and books.

Q: How much do you edit an accepted piece prior to publication?

A: It's not often that I make suggestions, and these are usually a matter of formatting. I expect the poet to know his craft and not to need any editing. Certainly, the author would get to approve any suggestion (it's always just a suggestion). If I accept a work for publication, and then later on, prior to publication or at the proofing stage, the author makes changes to the work, I almost always accept those changes.

Q: Do you nominate work you've published for any national or international awards?

A: I'm looking into it.