I’m not tremendous when it comes to change. During a certain period in the early 2000’s I ate turkey and provolone on a bagel for lunch every day. Like, every day. And not like one you buy at a deli where somebody has prepared it fresh for you with some fresh lettuce or tomato or dressing. I made that shit at home every morning–frozen bagel, pre-packaged deli meat filled with all manner of nitrates and carcinogens, slice of cheese. Stick it all together in a freezer-burnt embrace and then zip that sucker up in a baggie. Microwave it at work. And: delicioso. I mean, I actually remember looking forward to it. I might’ve been sick.
I did this lunch routine for a good year, at least. Part of the reason had to do with being on a budget. Maybe like 25 percent of the reason, actually. The other 75 percent was just… man, I weren’t so good with change.
But change happens. And sometimes you are the change. And holy shit, you better have a lot of turkey and provolone on hand when that happens.
Today I am The Change. At least, here at Atticus Review.
Here’s the announcement I’m trying to get at: as of this week, in addition to being the Editor-in-Chief of Atticus Review, I am now the Owner and Publisher..
My god, what does this mean?
Firstly, what it means is that the Founding Owner/Publisher, Dan Cafaro, was crazy enough to sell it to me. But more than this (and kidding aside) what it means is he was successful in building a laudable journal and press publishing fantastic, high-caliber writing. Kudos to him. And also to us for getting to be a part of that journey.
Along with Dan, the Editorial Staff at Atticus Review (who will all be continuing on in their roles) have done and continue to do an incredible job discovering exceptional, cutting-edge writing that, simply put, bowls you the fuck over. I feel fortunate to be working with this crew and I can’t wait to help them bring you more knock-outs. They are the magic sauce. They are the cream-filled center. Thank you for being here, Michelle Ross, Michael Meyerhofer, Dorothy Bendel, Matt Mullins, Ruth Awad, Amy Graziano, Eleanor Gallagher, Michael B. Tager, and Alison Lanier.
The long and the short of it is: we’re going to keep publishing great poetry, fiction, and nonfiction. Also, we’re going to continue to be one of the only online literary magazines posting great video-literature.
We are going to have fun. We are going to get weird.
We will be decidedly pro-dog.
We will undergo a facelift soon (the site will have some downtime over the next month) and it’ll be something we do in the name of modern web-site efficiency more than aesthetic prettiness (though we will aim to have some of that, too.)
We will still be political, but when we are political, we will be political with positive intent. We don’t see much need in simply calling out the bad so that we can all sit around agreeing at how bad it is. This is what Twitter is for.
We will operate with this idea: We must work at finding a counterculture. Counterculture is not sarcasm. Counterculture is real feeling. Counterculture is doing something… counter.
We will continue to be a resource for writers. We understand that there is so much standing in the way of putting words onto the page. We recognize this fact, and we want you — we want all of us — to begin anyway.
Now, one down side to being The Change is that sometimes you have to bring some bad news: Atticus Books will not be printing books or seeking manuscript submissions for the foreseeable future. While this most definitely is unfortunate, I will remind you of this proverb that I just now made up: a once and momentary conclusion does not a permanent discontinuation make.
And now: thank you! All of you. Writers and readers. People who have come here frequently over the years and people who have come here for the first time today. I believe in online publishing. I started in 1999 making web sites and blogging and creating stuff online and I didn’t stop. I love it. I believe that what makes it good is the immediacy and the intimacy and the lack of formality. I still believe we can apply a word like “democratizing” to it and have that word mean something good. I believe that what makes it good is the community.
I hope we all find more good here.
One thing I’ve learned over many years of blogging and publishing things online is that the communities and friendships that spring out of this are surprisingly resilient, which is an interesting thing for a seemingly fugitive medium. That said, these communities are constantly changing and evolving (which come to think of it, is a sign of resiliency). And that’s what is happening here, now.
There is never one person that leads to a change. It is the whole of it. The people, the atmosphere. So really, I am not the change, here. We are all the change.
I welcome all of your thoughts!