Friday, December 7, 2012

Six Questions for Ryan Swofford, Editor, The Weekenders Magazine

The Weekenders Magazine publishes literary fiction (sort of). The editor accepts poetry and fiction to 2,000 words. Read the complete guidelines here.

SQF: Why did you start this magazine?

RS: I started this magazine mostly because the magazine I'd been working on before this one failed. I changed the name. I refocused the mission. Now, I'm working with writers to help improve the literary underground, by bringing the best we can to the table, and by cultivating a strong sense of community within that underground. It's been a thrilling experience so far.

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

RS: The number one thing I'm looking for is personalization. I'm a very informal type of guy. I treat people like people, and I think it'd behoove the writer to treat editors like people, too. Secondly, the writing should be great. And, last but not least (probably the biggest reason I'd reject a submission): the piece should fit our aesthetic. Just read what we've published for an idea about that. We're very loose, if that makes any sense.

SQF: What common mistakes do you encounter that turn you off to a submission?

RS: Spelling mistakes, spelling my last name "Swafford," or not addressing me at all. Yeah. I've seen submissions that don't even include a cover letter - not even a quick "thanks for taking the time to read my submission." It's sad, really.

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

RS: Absolutely. Sometimes, we end up being friends, or partners in some other way. I work extremely close with writers...this is something that has, unfortunately, become a lost cause.

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

RS: Good question. Well, I've learned that writers need to be thick-skinned. Writers should eat rejection for breakfast, and then crap it out at the end of the day. Rejection is nothing. Failure is nothing. The only thing that is something is trying your absolute best, every time, every submission. Another thing I've learned is that writers can be so uptight. Don't worry if your submission won't be widely accepted. I mean, that's the whole purpose of The Weekenders.

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

RS: N/A. Great questions, mister!

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

NEXT POST: 12/11--Six Questions for Michael Mc Aloran Bone Orchard Poetry

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