Friday, September 29, 2017

Six Questions for Dr. Vivekanand Jha, Editor, Magnum Opus: a Poetry Anthology

Magnum Opus: A Poetry Anthology on Universal Oneness is planned for publication in 2019. Poets may submit one poem up to 50 lines by the December 31, 2018 deadline. Read the complete guidelines here.

SQF: Where did the idea come from for this anthology?

Dr. Vivekanand Jha: Poetry is a universal form of language hobnobbing with other souls and minds. It is a means to understand our feelings and to find our place in the universe. Poetry is a divine antidote to our inner upheaval and is a medium of peace in itself. I thought there should be an anthology which should display the greatest contemporary poems wrapped up in one book. The title I chose is self-explanatory and will be showcasing the greatest single poem of the poet being featured, i.e. the poem that has been best appreciated or adjudged by the readers, reviewers, critics, social media or journals etc.  It is also self-revealing that one cannot submit more than one poem and each poet will be evenly and equally represented. It is also evident that such poem would mostly be previously published. If poets feel their unpublished or freshly composed poem can be their magnum opus they can submit it as well. It is in those aforementioned senses we use the term ‘Universal Oneness’ in the subtitle.

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

DVJ: For submission I am looking for following four things:-

  1. Only one poem should be sent, of no more than 50 lines at Poems should originally be written in English. No translation, please.
  2. Bio should be included and it should be of no more than 100 words.
  3. Submission of more than one poem shall be rejected without intimation.
  4. MS word file should be prepared in the name of poet and it should contain bio, email id and poem. Submission should be sent as an email attachment.

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

DVJ: Poets submit their poems without reading the guidelines and it is a matter of deep concern for me. In guidelines it is clearly written that one should send one’s magnum opus poem only and it means one should not send more than one poem. Like other editors I too get irritated if pieces are submitted without observing the guidelines. We avoid accepting submissions that may be radical, racial, and vulgar in nature and, may also be inviting other kinds of controversies.

SQF: You hope to receive submissions from around the world. Based on submissions to this anthologies' sister publications, VerbalArt and Phenomenal Literature, are there certain geographical areas you feel are under represented?

DVJ: Though we receive submissions from all parts of the world, we struggle to receive quality submissions from the countries like Africa, France, Germany, Japan, West Indies and Arab countries. We receive good responses from USA, UK, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and my own country India.

SQF: What is going to be the selection procedure for this anthology?

DVJ: Mere submission of one’s magnum opus won’t qualify for the poem to be included in the anthology. The editor reserves the right to select the poem suiting the aim of the anthology and his decisions will be final. Final selection will be made after deadline for submission is over. Decision for selection or rejection will be intimated to individual in due course of time. It’s no use making query in between.

SQF: How do you deem this anthology in terms of its popularity, quality, circulation and availability?

DVJ: I wish and look forward to make this anthology an epoch making and to be listed in the category of one of the best poetry anthologies ever edited. We shall leave no stone unturned to reach the best contemporary poets all over the world. But if every poet, in the possession of this call for submissions, forwards to his fellow or friend poets, things will be pretty easier for us and it will be very helpful for the future health of poetry as well. Hence it would by my humble request from those poets reading this interview to forward this call to the emails at their disposal. The anthology will be listed on various online stores and like other books of Authorspress this collection too will be made available worldwide through authorized distributors and sub-distributors. The anthology will be published in both print and electronic format.

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

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