Consider the Gauntlet…Thrown down!

Ok, so there are days when despite everything that happens peripherally, like groceries needing to be bought, not getting the grades you wanted, dishes in your sink, blah blah blah, it’s still an amazing day and you look at life and smile an honest smile that reflects that life is good.

Well, today, is such a day. After three months—no make that THREE MONTHS of work, the Women in REDzine website, http://www.womeninredzine.com/, is finally finished. I won’t bore you with the hellacious details of putting the website together and getting the back issues of the magazine uploaded—one freaking word at a time—suffice to say that I am acutely aware of where we are coming from as a magazine, and where we still need to go. The hard work pays off though, it has made me very good at being still for long periods of time, familiarized me with “master pages” and more web-lingo than I ever wanted to know, forced me to learn the keyboard with a level of proficiency that I had no idea one mere mortal, not versed in the skills of typing, could ever manage…I think I may now be in the realm of the AEIC, if not faster…

I know what you’re thinking, “…but dear intrepid (and fearless) leader (see previous posts for explanation behind this repetition), why didn’t you just pay to have/delegate someone else do it?” Well, dear, sweet, reader…because (a) we can’t afford to pay and (b) never ask someone else to do something you don’t feel prepared to do yourself (and just between you and I dear reader…this EIC is a bit of a perfectionist and bristles at the thought of giving that kind of control over to someone else who may not “get” what I am trying to accomplish!) So needless to say, the job is done…for now…but the website will need to be updated in September with all our fall happenings….so until then website, adieu.

In other—and unbelievable as it may sound—better, news! I know…how do I top freedom from website black hole…well naysayer, this is how. Women in REDzine is now an accredited, legitimate, bona fide, true-blue, Literary Magazine!!!! The only one on the University of Wisconsin campus! See this, http://www.pw.org/literary_magazines/women_in_redzine, that’s us… Yeah, so we’re kinda even more awesome now 🙂 This doesn’t take anything away from the other wonderful journals out there…but you do get Writer’s Credits for getting published with us, so, as if you needed another reason to submit to us! The submissions are coming in, more and more every day, and I would like to thank those of you who have submitted, for not just trusting us with your work, but for also being patient as you wait for us to get back to you. To those of you contemplating it, what are you waiting for? An invitation? Well, consider this, your invitation to submit your Poetry, Prose, Art, Photos, Video, Experimental hybrid…whatever, to us…just go here, http://womeninredzine.submishmash.com/Submit and press the buttons.

I would also like to use this opportunity to thank Jensine Larsen (Editor/Founder of World Pulse magazine) and Roderick Clark (Editor of ROSEBUD magazine), who both took time out of their various immensely busy schedules to come to Madison and meet with our ragtag group, to not only give us the inside information on making our magazine a success, but also inspire us to persevere through all the times of self-doubt and moments of worry. I feel that the way that they chose to embrace our little group is proof positive that passion still exists in the fields of literature and journalism and I for one, cannot wait to get started on this path that we have chosen!

I am signing out…my computer and I know each other too well, we have spent way too many hours alone together, in a dimly lit room, until all hours of the night, my bare fingers dancing nimbly along its buttons as I gaze intently into its luminous depths…but now the sun is up, and like a lover that has overstayed (and therefore, missed) the anonymous cloak of night…one of us must do the walk of shame.

Until the next blog post—as always, I remain your intrepid (and fearless) leader,
The Editor-in-Chief, Women in REDzine.

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Hmmn, well I’ve got nothin’ for this title so…

Hello dear readers, it’s another early morning for me here, my headache finally broke around 5 this morning and I got the best sleep ever in the three hours afterward. It’s spring in Wisconsin, the skies are overcast, pregnant with the possibility of rain, and just outside my second floor window are flowering trees filled with tiny birds that chirp, rather than sing…I hated them yesterday while I was in the throes of my migraine, but today, I have the window open and all is right with the world. I’m still here, as you can tell, so either the world’s population is roughly the same, or, I am an ungodly heathen chosen to not be rapture-d away today…either possibility seems probable in this moment. Turns out the AEIC is still with us too, so I’m leaning towards the former…but we’ll see what happens at 6 pm.

But, if we all make it, Women in REDzine is slated to have an amazing year. The wonderful AEIC and I had an incredible interview with poet, Sean Bishop, this past Thursday and I must say that he made me a fan. He is refreshingly honest and cuts through the bullshit with this frankness, which is completely devoid of the pandering, my-work-is-an-ethereal-mystery crap, that so many poets seem to get bogged down in and he does it without cynicism…he is just real, and by the way, he has an amazing laugh that lets you know instantly of his genuine “there-ness” (hole in language again *sigh*) This amazing interview will be in our October (Fall) issue of WIRZ, so mark your calendar, along with an interview by multiple award-winning poet (and prose writer) Ron Wallace; multiple award-winning poet, including the 2010 Felix Pollak Prize in Poetry, Nick Lantz; and the 2005 recipient of the Quercus Review Poetry Series Annual Book Award and the 2011 Felix Pollak Prize in Poetry winner, Jacqueline Jones LaMon. This issue is certain to sell out at $8, so why not get the subscription for $26 (an amazing 4 issues and that saves you $6…then, of course, you’d get the other issues (Winter, Spring and Summer) containing interviews with Patrick Rothfuss, Nathan Englander, Benjamin Percy, Valerie Laken and Steven Amsterdam, just to name a few)

WIRZ will also be out and about this summer, our first stop being The 2011 Summerset Festival of the Arts 2011, on Saturday, July 30th, 2011. Followed by appearances and readings all across the state of Wisconsin, so if you’re a ‘sconnie come on out and see us. We’d love to meet you. The Website, Womeninredzine.com will have an updated calendar so check it regularly, or you can always visit us at Facebook http://www.facebook.com/pages/Women-in-REDzine/206193782727250?sk=wall to stay in touch.

It’s a nice day outside. I think I’ll go enjoy it and do some writing. If today is our/my last on this earth, well it couldn’t have been a nicer day to ride out into that sunset. I hope you use this as an opportunity to carpe the diem and tell the people you love how you feel, forgive the people who need it…even if they don’t deserve it, greet everyone with a smile and a friendly hello and above all, enjoy the life you have now, instead of waiting for everything to be perfect to be happy! We are never promised a “tomorrow,” all we have are but fleeting moments. (Hmmn, I’m going out on such a note of CHEESE right now *sigh* If I get taken, pretend I said something utterly less “old sage” and Yoda-esque and more badass Darth Vader-like…or epic, like, “Release the Kraken!”…but a real Kraken, not some wussified creature that turns to stone when the decapitated head of some half-snake, half-woman, all bad-ass creature—carried by a half-man, half-god, all jackass, man wearing leather diapers—shows up to save the day…bah. I mean, come on, his emergence from the water was more epic than ANYTHING else that happened from that point onwards, but I digress, pretend I said something awesome if I get snatched up to heaven…and why do we have to be naked to go, isn’t that a little awkward for everyone involved…seriously?)

As always, I remain your intrepid (and fearless) leader,
The Editor-in-Chief, Women in REDzine.

Finals week and here I am…

Hello dear readers, it’s just after 7 am yet and I am awake…not because I am all refreshed and raring to go conquer the day…not even close, simply because that class from hell, which has the final exam devised by Satan to crush my spirits, is in roughly 10 hours and I keep having nightmares where I’m roasted over a roaring fire as the professor cackles madly and asks me to describe in detail the process of Lysine synthesis in plants! Needless to say, no more sleeping for me. I really hate weed out classes—I loathe weed out classes because their sole purpose is to crush the determination of those students deemed “not smart enough” to devote an insane number of hours to teaching themselves everything—since they have a professor who teaches a 3 credit ELEMENTARY course like it should be a 1 credit course (naturally), but then writes exams as if it’s a 15 credit class and you have magically been transported to the advanced rocket science test for geniuses with picture perfect recall…’cause remember that photo from slide 96 that she had up for 10 seconds then said she would “never expect you to remember this,” well there’s gonna be 15 questions on it so…FRAK!

But anyway, despite the attempts to ruin my life, I’m happy to say that I am still in a pretty phenomenal mood. And related to my previous train of thought on weed out classes, I feel that as a writer, and now an editor, the weed out is the most painful part of the writing–submitting–publishing circle. You send in a story to a magazine, you never hear back from them…or if you do hear back, it’s six months later and it’s a cursory “ha–ha, no dice” rejection (from some underling, no doubt) that kills you a little, but you brush it off and send out your wounded piece back into the hostile world and wait some more. Women in REDzine is nothing like that. Each piece is read by at least three people…on average each piece gets five reading (2 Reviewers, 1 lead editor (poetry or prose) and the AEIC (who LOVES to read and compulsively reads every submission) and myself) This way, you avoid the dreaded hierarchy of publishing that involve the planets alignment with the sun and the moon and whether or not Mars was in retrograde on the night you were born and if you were upside down when you pressed the submit button…no, your submission gets shown some love at WIRZ.

I talk about our reading style because now we are starting to get submissions coming in…and not just any submissions, but amazing writers are submitting their work and I will admit to dancing around in utter jubilation when I saw that—no judging! If Tom Cruise can get away with it, then so can I! But, yes, so I was thrilled to see the submissions for Fall 2011 starting to come in and I wanted to let submitters, possible submitters, past submitters, everyone, know that we want your work. If you read this blog and like it (*gasp*) then you probably are into writing at some level, quite possibly are even sitting on a little treasure trove of beautiful poetry, or fun stories, or artwork. Please send them to Women in REDzine. Having now seen behind the WIRZ veil go ahead and visit http://www.womeninredzine.com and submit. We now have the submission manager up and running, in addition to the direct email option…so go ahead, you know you want to!

There will be another blog post shortly, with excellent news, so stay posted. (ha-ha, I almost said “stay classy, San Diego,” but that, I think, would have cost me dearly, and revealed that I may, perhaps, have seen Anchor Man, or snippets of said possible movie that I may, or may not, have seen) So until then, dear reader, Push. That. Button. http://www.womeninredzine.com/#!submit-to-wirz

As always, I remain your intrepid (and fearless) leader,
The Editor-in-Chief, Women in REDzine.