When it comes to Spindle, I often refer to “we” but the reality is that it’s 99.5% me; I’m a control freak and have no shame admitting it.
Of course, that has a rather extreme down side to it, too.
I have a couple of poetry editors who are more like consultants whom I run poems that I’m on the fence about for a second opinion, but I read every single submission first — poetry, fiction, non-fiction, photography — and reply to every one of them myself. For a while, I was offering critical feedback on the majority of the rejections, but as anyone who has ever been an editor before, that’s a recipe for disaster on so many levels.
[Side note: Badly rhymed poems centered on the page make my eyes bleed and baby Jeebus cry. DO NOT submit such poems. To me, or to anyone!]
Plus, I’m Spindle‘s sole webmonkey, posting all of the content and optimizing the Joomla platform, the latter of which often takes up more time than it should because I love the technical side as much as the creative side.
I sent out an email yesterday to everyone who’d submitted something last year and hadn’t received a response yet — or in some cases, who’d received acceptances but their work was never posted — explaining that we’d been on “unofficial hiatus since last Spring when I changed jobs and things only got crazier and further delayed when I bought a house, moved to New Jersey, and changed jobs again; plus the election, the crashing economy, blah blah blah. I’m not offering excuses, just context, to explain why you haven’t heard back from me yet.”
I knew I was way behind, but I was stunned to realize some of these submissions went back as far as February 2008! Ridiculous, and quite frankly, a little bit embarassing, regardless of the legitimate circumstances.
I worked my way through the majority of the poetry submissions yesterday — 8 acceptances, 5 maybes, and 17 rejections — and am now consolidating all of the fiction and non-fiction into one document that I can print out and review on my commute to work over the next few days. Altogether, there were 78 submissions in the backlog — including about 10 that were still within the 3-5 week window for a response — plus 4 poems I’d accepted and not posted, 2 unedited columns, and a new columnist who submitted her first column just I was starting to fall behind. (Sorry, Gabrielle!)
My goal is to be fully caught up by the end of February, and start posting new content within the next couple of weeks.
That said, I realize that I’m going to have to make some adjustments to my original goal of regular monthly updates and go to a more irregular schedule, and more importantly, I’m going to have to get some real help onboard to keep things on track.
Since I’m not willing to cede editorial control to anyone else — sorry, it’s MY baby! — I need someone who knows Joomla (or at least is familiar with a real CMS, not just WordPress), has a passion for all things internet, and is a quick learner. Basically, a Managing Editor type willing to work for free and, if they’re in the NYC area, the occasional free drink.
Interested, or know anyone who might be? Drop me a line at glecharles (at) spindlezine (dot) com with “Managing Editor” in the subject line.
In the meantime, keep an eye on your Spindle RSS feed for new content in the very near future.