First, please let me apologize for my longer than usual absence from this space. It has been an extremely busy month and a half of work with the Literary House Press. But I'll tell you now some of the things I've been up to all this time:
1. Cherry Tree
On August 15th, Cherry Tree: A National Literary Journal @ Washington College opened for general submissions. As managing editor, it has been my job to sift through the hundreds of electronic packets of poetry, fiction, and nonfiction: sending them to the screeners who will read them first and then moving them up the reading hierarchy. I'm also responsible for handling all of the correspondence with submitters and (when we're lucky) contributors. So all the (unfortunately) form rejections, the (better) encouraging rejections, and the (BEST) acceptance letters for the truly unmistakably fabulous pieces. I prepare and send out the publication contracts for those accepted pieces. I work with the writers to edit those pieces that require those final touches to make them polished and perfect (or close enough, anyway). I've even been keeping daily statistics on our submissions and responses. It's a big job but, so far, it is one that I have really loved doing. By now, we've nearly filled the roster for issue 1, but we'll still be reading until Cherry Tree closes for submissions on October 15th.
2. The Book of Scented Things
We are also preparing for the launch of our brand-new poetry anthology, The Book of Scented Things: 100 Contemporary Poems about Perfume, on October 7th at the Rose O'Neill Literary House. So we've been working our butts off marketing and promoting the book. It has arrived at our distributor, Small Press Distribution, where it is available for purchase. It has also received a few good reviews at popular perfume blogs like Bois de Jasmin and Ayala Moriel's Smelly Blog, and by Penning Perfumes editor Claire Trévien at Sabotage Reviews. We sent out promotional postcards to a select list of independent bookstores and libraries. The official book launch will be October 7th at 4:30PM at the Literary House. Then we'll follow that up with a second book launch on October 29th at 7:00PM at the Arts Club of Washington in DC. I can't wait for both of these events!
3. Other writing things
So during this time, when not editing and marketing, I am still writing my own poetry (when I can manage it): continuing in development of the collaborative chapbook manuscript Women's Work and continuing the sequence of poems that will make up the opening section of my (intended) full-length manuscript Catechesis. In addition to the slow and steady writing progress, some other fun things in the works:
- I will be planning a poetry reading (my first!) with the lovely and talented Sally Rosen Kindred to take place in the Annapolis area. Details to come!
- I have also been invited to be the Poetry Judge for the contest from Echoes & Images, a literary magazine out of Northeast State Community College in Tennessee!