Newsletter – August 2016

Hello folks, here’s what’s happening.

Magazine

Lunar Poetry will publish its last issue in its current format in September. It will be a double issue. There will be no issue this month. After that it will become a quarterly publication from December onward. Current subscriptions will still apply to the magazine in the new format. Poets waiting for news on work submitted prior to June 2016 will receive a response this week. Lunar is accepting submissions as usual; if you prefer to write to a brief, the Themes page will be rejigged shortly.

Put simply, producing a decent quality poetry magazine once a month is a full time job. The magazine has got to the point where it more or less pays for itself, but it is a long way away from paying for all the time I currently put into it.

Lunar’s original goals were to be frequent and cheap. Currently it is not particularly cheap and only sporadically frequent. I think such a magazine is possible and would be useful, but the publishers and editors of such a magazine would need to have far larger resources than I do.

Since Lunar cannot meet its original aims, I had considered winding it up. However, since it has begun, I think it has come to fill other roles not currently being supplied by the poetry press. First, it publishes a wider range of poetry than most other magazines, and I am pretty sure that a number of the poems published in Lunar would not be published elsewhere. You may, of course, think that they ought not to have been published anywhere but I would rather publish eclectic and interesting poetry, some of which will certainly be hated by some of the magazine’s readers, than forty copies of the same, perfectly good, poem.

Second, we are still, as far as I know, the only print poetry publication that gives serious coverage to spoken word. I have said many times that I think it is absurd that most poetry publications ignore half of contemporary poetry. Admittedly, it is difficult to do justice to spoken word in print, but hardly impossible – we manage to write about music, theatre, comedy and other artforms which exist primarily as a live experience: there is no reason we cannot do the same with spoken word.

These, I think, are important things which someone ought to be doing, so Lunar may as well carry on doing them. In addition, there are plenty of other things which I think poetry magazines could be doing which they currently are not; moving to quarterly publication will allow Lunar to attempt to do a few more of them.

Podcasts

The podcasts are continuing with a regular schedule – if you missed the recent blogpost on this, you can find out what’s happening here, and by following @Silent_Tongue on Twitter.

Also, I will be in Edinburgh for the festival this month, conducting as many short podcasts as I can. If you have a show (or a floor to sleep on) get in touch.

Reviews

Reviews printed in Issues 9 and 10 will be appearing on the blog over the next month, as will as many reviews from Edinburgh as I can get written.

Bookshop

Our first pop-up shop(s) will be appearing at live poetry events in the first week of September. We are ironing out the details this week, and they will be appearing on the blog very shortly, so keep your eyes peeled.

I think that’s everything for just now.

Cheers,
Paul.

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