This will likely be my last posting as editor of echolocation, and what a year it’s been. The staff of 2011-2012 spent a long summer of reading thousands of pages of submissions from all across North America, voting and vetting and arguing and cajoling over their choices. The senior editors then grimaced under a peppering of emails from me to get their content in on time to the copy editors. Google docs groaned, online submissions managers were stickered with labels and tags of “sorry we can’ts” and “yeses please!”.
I flaked away the decade old oxidization from my design and layout skills, and with a borrowed copy of Indesign and last year’s templates, spent the last two weeks in adjusting margins, writing mastheads and arranging bios. I worked in bed, with a bottle of cream lager on my bedside, and nearly knocked it over when at last I could send a PDF of Issue 12 to the fiction and poetry editors. I have a reputation though for catching things before they tip over, and the files made to Coach House with (pinkies crossed and kissed) plenty of time for it to be ready for Word on the Street this year.
I can’t quite believe it’s in, and done, and that we pulled it off. echolocation has always been a shaky, though resilient effort, and I’m going to unashamedly sound off on clichés and write how fantastically, gratefully, tearfully proud I am of the volunteer efforts of this year’s team. All the hyperboles! We checked so many things off lists this year– launching a blog, starting a Twitter which now has a very healthy 250+ followers and is steadily gaining every day, participating in book fairs and festivals, shouldering our way into your local university libraries, holding parties and readings and bakesales and kicking up a dust of literary activity.
It’s cockle-warming to leave echolocation in such a healthy shape for the new incoming editors, Nadia Ragbar and Jess Taylor, both in their second year of the MA in Creative Writing at U of T, and both with some series event and grant writing chops in their drawers. I feel sure we’ll headed for another whirlywind year of boosting good writing and providing venues for writers to co-mingle and collude.
Keep an eye out for the new issue at the U of T St. George Bookstore, and at our table at the Magazine Mews. This year’s issue will feature new poetry and fiction Joel Allegretti, Andre Babyn, Jenni B. Baker, Andrew Battershill, Hugh Behm-Steinberg, Tristan Chirovolu, Lauren de Paepe, Catherine Graham, Andy Johnson, Will Johnson, Ben Ladouceur, Julie McArthur, Laura Merleau, Jeff Nagy, Nadia Ragbar, Caitlin Thomson, Henry Walters, Eric Zboya. No end of riches! You”ll find photography by Eleanor Lenore Bennett and Barbara Konecny, linocuts by Stefan Berg and cover art by Vuk Dragojevic, and to round out the issue, myself and poetry editor Paul Franz have a few reviews of recent Coach House titles. It’s a tighter, more compact issue that our previous, but no less potent. Order yours soon.
Signing off,Phoebe Wang Editor-in-Chief, 2011-2012