Skip to Content

Editor Interview: The Citron Review

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

A: Concise work that matters

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

A: Waxwing
The Night Heron Barks
The Ekphrastic Review
Split Lip
Sixth Finch
Fractured Lit
The Journal of Compressed Creative Arts
The Adroit Journal
River Teeth
Pithead Chapel
New World Writing
Flash Frontier
Okay Donkey

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

A: Claudia Rankine
Terrance Hayes
Anne Carson
Rita Dove
Brenda Shaughnessy
T.C. Boyle
Killarney Clary
Michelle Elvy
Danez Smith
Tara Isabel Zambrano
Cathy Ulrich
Tommy Dean
Kaveh Akbar
Frederick Barthelme
Jules Archer
Jimmy Santiago Baca
Kim Magowan
Aaron Birch

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

A: The Citron Review tries to give our readers a complete reading experience. We feature quality writing from diverse voices. In addition, our editor-in-chief and genre editors write insightful letters to introduce the work selected each issue. Occasionally, we have themed issues. Zest is a book review and new features section of the journal that started in 2019. Look for more exciting content in 2021.

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

A: Familiarize yourself with our journal. Strive for that elusive balance of power, restraint, and concision. Be yourself. We like to showcase craft with meaning.

Q: Describe the ideal submission.

A: An ideal submission follows submission guidelines, indicates explicitly or implicitly that the submitter is familiar with our journal, and takes risks that pay off. We return to the submission to discover a deeper layer of meaning.

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

A: Most of our submitters follow the submission guidelines. Things to avoid: sending multiple submissions, poems or stories with offensive content, and/or epics.

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

A: We appreciate a short cover letter and bio. Previous publication credits are welcome too, though a complete list is unnecessary.

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

A: We read each piece to the end. If a person honors us by sending his/her/their work, we feel it is our duty to give it full consideration. Typically, we get a sense of whether a piece is right for us after a few stanzas/paragraphs.

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

A: Genre editors and readers make their votes and forward them to the editorial team for review. The ET then votes and comes to a consensus. Most of the time, there is a robust discussion. Once in a while and not very often, a piece is an immediate "yes" and gets accepted quickly by the ET.

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

A: Our editor-in-chief is Angela Brommel, and she does a fantastic job of steering the ship, which means she is keenly involved in Citron's day-to-day processes and has our destination in mind. JR Walsh is our online editor and hands-on builder of everything from our quarterly issues to social media to strategy. As senior poetry editor and editor of Zest, I read and shape the direction of our poetry selections while keeping an eye out for arresting contemporary writing we might feature in Zest.

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

A: In this electronic age, it is important for publishers to innovate while embracing technology. At Citron, we continually look for ways to improve our readers' experience and to provide updated platforms so they can stay connected.

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

A: Generally, we do not edit pieces. We want them to be fully formed upon arrival.

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

A: We are proud to nominate work in every major category including The Pushcart Prize, Best of the Net, Best Microfiction, and Best Small Fictions.