Our first online issue was published on June 5 2020, which makes us just about two years old. We are, it seems, as tenacious as Boris Johnson (although much prettier, I hope). Here, for what it's worth, is what I wrote in that first editorial.
"Three years ago, I edited a magazine which we hoped would provide a platform for new and lesser known writers by allowing them to share a space with those who were better known. The response was overwhelming and, along with several new writers, we were able to publish work by Al Alvarez, Colm Toibin, Les Murray, Mark Doty, Tony Visconti, Nick Coleman, Samantha Harvey and Fran Lock. We were, as you can imagine, hugely grateful and we were excited, too. But publishing is publishing: we couldn't get the funding for the second issue. It was only during lockdown that I started to think a little more carefully about what I might still be able to do.
It seems to me that one contribution I can make is to continue to provide a platform for people who haven't got one. Or who have one, perhaps, but who feel (all writers feel this, I suspect) that it isn't nearly big enough. ...We don't only want writers. We want artists; film-makers; musicians. Send me your poems and stories; pass over clips of you singing songs or films that you think deserve more attention. If I like it, I'll post it. And please. Please please please. If you are an established, um, "creative" (horrible word) I'm asking you to get in touch with me and help support your fellow artists during a very difficult time."
I leave it for you to judge if we've achieved what we set out to do. All I can say is that it's been, and continues to be, hugely enjoyable. The current issue contains new poems by David Harsent, as well as some terrific poems by Tishani Doshi, Fran Lock, Josephine Balmer, Hélène Demetriades, Maggie Sawkins, Owen Gallagher, Finola Scott, Mark Russell, Jean Atkin, Marcia Hindson, Al Mcclimens, Gordon Taylor, J.P. Seabright, Peter Donnelly, Susan Butler and Shannon Hardwick. We also have Fran's extremely interesting and moving take on "Since Feeling is First", a review of Josephine's book, Ghost Passage, a track by Nick Cave, an essay by Jane Feaver on Tracey Emin, more photographs from our own inimitable Steve Shepherd and the usual piece of Buddhist wisdom, courtesy of Noah Rasheta. I hope you enjoy reading it as much as I enjoyed putting it together. Please do attempt to spread the word.