Read poems and enjoy art by Bebe Cook, Theresa Senato Edwards & Lori Schreiner, J.L. Glenn & K.S. Bartow, Mel Goldberg, Guy Kettelhack, Rivka Keren, Carolyn Kreiter-Foronda, J.B. Mulligan, Kristine Ong Muslim, Katherine Riegel, Cheryl & Janet Snell, Janice D. Soderling, Rae Spencer, Ira Sukrungruang, and Donna Vorreyer.
I am doing something insane, yes: I will be publishing FIFTEEN poems (with art) this coming issue, instead of ten. Why you ask? Because this is the only art issue. It may be the only art issue ever (or I may do it again next year), but don't think it's a pattern. We will go back to our regularly scheduled number of ten poems with the next issue, due out in January.
First, if you haven't followed the submission guidelines, don't expect your poems to be accepted. The guidelines are there for a reason. Specifically, the word "Submission" must appear in every email subject. Why? Because this way I can search my spam folder for submissions that have gone astray. If that word doesn't appear, it's likely that your submission will end up in Spam and then end up deleted. If you're lucky enough for it to actually make it to the inbox, I'm still going to send it back to you because you didn't follow the guidelines and there are far more professional poets out there that did. They get first dibs on my time.
If you've decided to ignore the guidelines entirely and send me a submission with not only the subject line missing, but also more poems than I ask for, you'll be lucky to get a response from me at all. Therefore, when I send poems back with a politely worded note to follow the guidelines, do NOT send back a bitter and egotistical response. You can simply not respond. If you do respond with a bitter and egotistical note, expect your future submission to be deleted without response. Seriously. It only takes a second to ignore a rejection. It takes at least 2-3 to send back a nasty email and my irritation about it will last forever. Expect me to ignore you in the future if our paths ever again cross.
By the way, there's about a zillion webzines out there, and a zillion poets. It's not really gonna hurt my journal to pass on your brilliant contribution. Go post on a blog somewhere.
I like to add the people who have so generously contributed their work to Autumn Sky Poetry to my list on this blog. If you would like to be added to this blog, please send me an email or post in the comments (with a link to your website, blog, etc.) and I will add you asap. Thanks!
For the first time ever, Autumn Sky Poetry will be publishing artwork as well as poems! If you are a poet who also dabbles in any of the visual arts, send me your work. I'm looking for poems with corresponding artwork:
—Do you have a poem about a barn? Send me the poem and the photo that you took that inspired the poem.
—Do you like to draw abstract shapes? Send me the poem you wrote and the doodle that you drew in the margin.
—Do you paint? Send me the painting and the poem you wrote about it.
—Did your sister or your son draw something after reading your poem? Send them in together.
—Alternatively, you may submit ekphrastic poems with a corresponding link to the art that inspired the poem. I won't publish the art, but I will include the link with the poem.
Send submissions to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Send up to four poems within the body of the email. I only read the first four poems.
Attach the artwork as a .jpg. I will only accept four graphic attachments per submission.
To submit to this particular issue, make sure you include the words: "Submission Number 15" in the subject line of your email. All other email with attachments will be discarded unopened.
And it was agony because there were so many wonderful poems. I had to let go of several that I truly liked. I hate that. Even more difficult was narrowing some down to one per poet when the submission had two poems that I liked equally.
Thanks everyone, for submitting your excellent work. It's always appreciated. I apologize forever for having to reject so many. I know what that feels like.
Now the fun part: building the issue. This should take a few days to a week. I always like to send out proof pages, just in case I make a stupid mistake. My copy editor is also amazing and this is when he goes over everything with a fine-toothed comb. The astonishing thing is how fast he is at picking out typos and inconsistencies! I would be sunk without his help.
and no, I haven't forgotten that this is the month the next issue comes out. I like to read all the submissions at once, putting the ones I like into a pile and whittling it down. Then I send out the notices of acceptance. I'm in the middle of reading right now and I've a few poems that are definitely keepers and a bunch of maybes. And that's where things are at!
I finished reading through the submissions today. Whew! I am waiting to hear back from a few people and then I can start putting the issue together. I should have it published next week.
I have to say, I am tempted to place a list of forbidden poetry words on the submission guidelines. However, that probably would not go over too well with the poets who read and want to submit to the journal. For what it's worth, I really don't ever want to read anything about "drifting" this or that for at least three months in a poem. I don't know if it was just this round of reading, or if it's a more insidious indication of modern poetry's descent in the trivial, but I would really like to see more original imagery. Is that too much to ask?
Of course, now the question becomes: what is "original?"