Friday, February 27, 2015

Six Questions for Eric Allen Yankee and Caseyrenée Lopez, Co-Chief Editors for Spring 2015 Issue, Twisted Vine Literary Arts Journal

Twisted Vine is a biannual, innovative journal published by the Master of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies graduate program at Western New Mexico State University. The magazine accepts fiction and poetry in all genres, creative nonfiction, and art, with a preference for cross genre works. Learn more here.

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

Caseyrenée Lopez: 

Quality. Well edited, revised prose and poetry give a polished experience to the reader. There is a certain level of professionalism about polished writing that always puts it on top of the "slush pile."

Innovation. Modern writing must work to subvert and play with old literary tropes. In this day and age, no one wants to read the same material that's been pushed for centuries. Everyone is unique and has a unique perspective, so let that voice shine and give us something that stops us in our tracks.

Interdisciplinary themes. Because Twisted Vine is published by the interdisciplinary studies department, we have a special affinity for work that transcends genre and form. Experimental and hybrid literature often works well within the interdisciplinary theme because it allows writers to have fun with words and form. We like fun.

Eric Allen Yankee:

Clarity.  If nothing makes sense then you need to revise until it does.

Purpose.  Is every line in the poem serving your overall purpose? Was each word carefully considered?  Does the finished product serve the purpose you had in mind when you envisioned the piece?

Feeling.  Make us feel something.  This feeling could be joy, anger, despair, love, etc.  It doesn't matter.  If you're not crying while you write your sad love story then it's just not that sad.

SQF: What most often turns you off to a submission?

CL: Work that is unoriginal, demeaning to minorities (people of color, LGBTQ, women, etc.), explicit sexuality, and gratuitous violence are the big ones.

EAY: Don't give us something unless it is the best you believe it can be.

SQF: When are you opening submissions?

EAY: Twisted Vine is open for submissions until April 15, 2015, and will reopen in the fall.

SQF: What are the word limits for fiction, creative nonfiction, and poetry?


Prose: 4,500-5,000
Poetry: 10 page max

SQF: If Twisted Vine had a theme song, what would it be and why?

CL: "Keep Me Hanging On" By: Kim Wilde—with that hook and catchy 80s beat who can say no to Kim? No seriously, writers should relate because writing is so hard. Writing can torment your life in the most unfortunate ways—the words are never right, there's always room for revision, it's never complete. But no matter, rejection after rejection we keep hanging on.

EAY: “Suzanne” by Leonard Cohen

Why?  Because I want to see writing that gets me on its wavelength and makes me believe I was always its lover.

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

CL: What are Twisted Vine's plans for the future?

To become a leading arts journal and represent Interdisciplinary Studies across the board.


What formats will Twisted Vine be available in?

Twisted Vine's spring 2015 edition will be online at and will also mark the first time the Journal has appeared in ePub format!  We are also exploring print on demand options.

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

NEXT POST: 3/6—Six Questions for Caseyrenée Lopez, Editor, Crab Fat Literary Magazine

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