September: Let’s walk, talk, and de-stress – Kelly Coody, Editor in Chief

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Want To Cut in the Submissions Line? Here are a Few Tips –


We are not your cookie-cutter magazine; the things I’m about to share with you are only applicable to your submissions to us here at SLM.

  1. The more we get to know about you in your email, the better! That not only tells us about you as an individual and as a writer, but puts your writing and/or art into context for us.
  2. The more specific you are in the subject line, the quicker we’ll be to open the email. (e.g., specify the theme you’re submitting to, genre, etc.)
  3. If you’re already a reader of SLM, tell us that! If we talked on Facebook via the “Facebook Messenger App” or whatever the hell that is, Twitter, either through Tweets or DMs, or have had ANY sort of interaction, mention it in your email!!! I can’t stress this enough – due to wacky usernames on Twitter, I have no way of putting it together that you’re @RandoWriter and that we Tweet back and forth all the time, therefore making my tone automatically seem cold to you.
  4. Embrace the culture here — we love the process of engaging with you. If you’ve been rejected 5,000 times and hate everyone, again, TELL ME THAT! I’m not every other editor. We are not every other magazine.
  5. Forget about trying to sound professional in your email; be yourself. If your attached artwork, story/stories, or poems have an interesting backstory or are close to your heart, this is all stuff we’d like to know.
  6. There’s no way you can get too personal in your email to us – well, yes there is, but never mind that for now- I was once rejected by an agent for mentioning how nice her curly hair looked in comparison to my ’80’s hair band-look when I rolled out of bed in the morning – and then, said agent went on to post a long letter about what crosses the line and what doesn’t. I felt like an idiot, sitting there reading that, with my cheeks stinging.
  7. Throw away your “industry-standards” rule-book or guidebook and be real. and know that both myself AND Melissa are writers just like you and that we occasionally wear our hearts on our sleeves as well.
  8. As hard as Melissa has worked with me to monetize this web site, it takes time (a long time, apparently) for us to see any money, let alone a profit, so understand that we work hard – nights, weekends, and sometimes at the expense of our health, sanity and families, in order to make sure SLM happens every day – and all without seeing a dime. Unless one catches our eye from the couch cushions – but that’s more likely to happen than the former. If you get a grouchy or grumpy email from one of us, be patient. We are still only human, after all. We’re not perfect.

Every writer has a unique process and style. Embrace that. Un-learn what you’ve been “told” to think and, instead, work with us as we all re-train our brains how to think.

Writing and reading alike need to be thought of as an adventure again, as fun, like it used to be. I’m here to revive and breathe fresh air back into a decaying, atrophying contemporary literature scene where everyone seems to be perpetually angry or perpetually snobby, eager for any reason to figuratively click the “no” button in response to our work.

I want you to have FUN writing to these upcoming themes – not plagued by doubt the whole time you’re writing, afraid you’re wasting your time. You are not wasting your time – we sincerely NEED writing for all six of our upcoming themes.

Here are our themes: (Note, we’ve chosen two per month starting in October to give you a choice!)

September: Voima Oy’s WHAT IF?

October: Jeffrey H Toney , PhD’s EPIPHANY, OR Paul Beckman’s It Began in an Elevator…

November: Carrie Redway’s ANCESTRAL GEMS or Carrie Redway’s DROUGHT

December: Penny Barratt’s AMBIGUITY or Ani Keaten’s PHOTOGRAPH

I also need to acknowledge the elephant in the room. {He’s starving – hang on – I keep forgetting about him…} We have a new staff member here at SLM! Welcome Justin Hunter to the editing team and congratulate him! Justin won an Assistant Editor position here with us because of his persistence, eagerness and tenacity. He will do a fantastic job here helping Melissa and me with SLM’s submissions process, social media, and he will be another friendly face who’s eager to learn more about you and the way we operate here.

Say hello, especially if you’re a regular contributor, get to know him – and continue to get to know Melissa, especially if you haven’t already – they are both insanely talented and I feel so lucky to have them both on my team at SLM. 

BTW, if you haven’t heard, there’s rumor going around that we are to be having a t-shirt design competition that starts in September, where YOU, the READERS are going to cast votes to choose the winning design. I am so excited about this – it’s new to us – and to the Kean University design students. This will undoubtedly challenge and enlighten all of us and I can’t wait for the process to begin, alongside our literary theme schedule. [Big thanks to Dr. Toney, once again!]

Great things are in store, guys – and it’s still only the beginning. 

Cheers, guys.



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