Monday, March 14, 2011

Six Questions for Susan Hansell, Editor, Spot Literary Magazine

Spot Literary Magazine is a biannual journal that publishes fiction, poetry, and essays. Read the complete guidelines here.

SQF: Why did you start this magazine?

SH: After moving from a city center, to which I'm accustomed, I began Spot Literary Magazine to stay in communication, or to renew communication, with writers and artists I've known during my own writing career, and also to find interesting work that is new, or new to me.

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

SH: Language, concept, and execution structures that are unique to a writer's working sensibilities.

SQF: What are the top three reasons a story is rejected, other than not fitting into your answers to the above question and why?

SH: Conventional, predictable, and gratuitous aspects of the above.

SQF: What is it about the characters in a story that makes them pop off the page and grab hold of you?

SH: Details in character & action forged fresh within a story, which, in any sense, sincerely convey a requirement to be told.

SQF: Will you publish a story an author posted on a personal blog?

SH: No.

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

SH: The most annoying thing about editing which turns me off to a submission: People who clearly have not taken the time to read basic information on time guidelines and logistics (e.g., attachments v. e-mail window postings) for sending work, which are clearly posted on our website. Related to this are people who don't take the time to read, or even skim, the current works up on our website or from our current hard copy in order at least to get specific examples of what we do publish--which might be better than reading my answers to these questions, though I do appreciate your project's attempt to assist in the lit mag scene. In other words, I am irked by writers who wish merely "to be published" and who feel no need to read, or even look at, the works of others which a publication deems worthy, not to produce a cookie-cutter version of such, of course, but merely to (possibly) appreciate a zine's aesthetics and to (potentially) see if there might be some mutuality between all parties.

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

NEXT POST: 3/16--Six Questions for Jack Little, Editor, The Ofi Press Online Literary Magazine

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