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Editor Interview: Acumen: A Literary Journal

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

A: Surprisingly good poetry

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

A: Rockingham Press
Bloodaxe Books
Poetry Salzburg Review
Many poets and writers

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

A: High quality production
Editor reads everything
New poetry
New translations
Articles on poetry
Over 100 issues
Excellent reputation
Shortlisting for each issue means that all work finally accepted is soon published

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

A: Follow the submission guidance on our website please -
Do not send work we do not publish (e.g. short stories)
Please understand we receive a very large number of submissions, every single day, and can only take a small proportion of the work submitted
Do take a look at the magazine, via the website or by subscribing or asking your library to do so
Please do not send the same work to us and at the same time as to others, we do not consider simultaneous submissions (i.e. work that is submitted elsewhere), the submitted work should be unpublished and not submitted elsewhere
Ensure your submission is typed
Submit no more frequently than once every three to four months.
Unfortunately due to the volume of work we receive we are unable to provide individual appraisal.
If poems or your work is shortlisted, it enters the shortlist for the next issue of Acumen. The final poems / articles to be included in the issue will be chosen from the shortlist about two months before the issue is released.

Q: Describe the ideal submission.

A: Strong poems or new translations
Since 1985, when Acumen was founded by Patricia Oxley, we have sought to publish the best in new poetry and poetry translations, alongside articles, debate, comment and reviews of recent poetry publications.
We publish new and established writers, and are proud to have discovered many new voices.
All poems are considered on merit.
We welcome unpublished poems, translations of poems, articles and debate on poetry covering a wide variety of topics and with different writing styles.
Please send no more than 6 poems (fewer if they are long) with your details on every page and an appropriate means to reply

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

A: Send something we don't publish, e.g. short stories etc

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

A: No bio is needed, we assess poems on merit. However, it is important for us to know that the submission is intended for Acumen and that is it not a simultaneous submission, We do not consider simultaneous submissions or published work. We focus on unpublished work, and our shortlisting process means that we can't manage simultaneous submissions because work accepted is soon published.
Provide a brief covering note with the details of your submission, and indicating whether you are submitting poetry, essay about a poet or poetry, or letters/comment.

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

A: All

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

A: Reviewing submissions
Dealing with orders
Dealing with queries
This is not a paid role, so I have a day to day job as well

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

A: We take electronic submissions
we have a website and twitter account

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

A: When appropriate and possible