elisem: (Default)
Yep, I'm the new poetry editor for Apex magazine.

Right now, I'm writing the submission guidelines. In another venue*, I found myself musing on what ... OK, ranting on what people shouldn't send me. I thought I'd better bring it over here for your reading delectation.



Don't Send Me:

1) Anything you wrote after thinking, "Oh, speculative poetry must be
an easy sell, especially for a mainstream poet like myself. I'll just
stick a unicorn in it or a spaceship or something. After all, there
cannot possibly be a vibrant poetry culture already going on there,
with some kick-ass poets."

2) Anything whose remarkable element is merely that it is speculative.
(It may be remarkable to you, but it's bread and butter to us.) Don't
just wave a neat idea or a set of atmospheric phrases around and call
it a poem. Go somewhere with it. No, take us somewhere with it. Or
bring that somewhere to us. Or make us see that it's been here all
along, underneath.

3) Anything written from a position of apathy about or contempt for
the genre of speculative fiction. Love the genre of speculative fiction
because it speaks to you. Or love-hate it because it speaks to you but
leaves you out much of the time -- and then write me something that
brings your speculative cosmos into focus.


However, if you really want to triumph, break any of these rules by
writing something so brilliant that I have to buy it anyhow. (This is
known as the Mike Ford method.)


*The WELL, if you were wondering.

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Elise Matthesen

January 2017

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