Comments on Stirring

As far as doing the magazine--it's wonderful. And I think it is wonderful BECAUSE we don't see each other all the time. Our opinions differ so much that I fear we'd come to blows or just walk off in a huff if we had to talk to each other in the same room every week. This way we can say what we think, and we know it's the great and powerful EE who makes the final decisions, so we don't know from favorites and such. Don't know about the others, but by the next issue I forget who said what about which, and we're all on equal footing again. I love it. Wouldn't work anywhere else. Well money would be good----but-----

- John Turner, Editor since our birth in Sept. 1999
There is a quote I found somewhere in my 40+ years of reading that I try to keep in mind when I write, but particularly when I edit:

"Poetry is the revelation of a feeling that the poet believes to be
interior and personal [but] which the reader recognizes as his own."
-- Salvatore Quasimodo

When I receive a batch of poems to read for possible publication, I try to select those that adhere to it, those in which the author is not afraid to make intensely personal revelations that are also relevant to the reader. If a piece of poetry reaches out its hands to me; if it breaks my heart and leaves me weeping; if it tickles my funny bone; or perhaps most importantly, if it makes me want to shout at the end, "Oh my god, thatís my story," then I know it is perfect for Stirring. I can almost guarantee that our readership will find themselves somewhere on our pages, that they will be able to connect intimately with our contributors who give so much of themselves in their writing. I believe that sums up what is so special about Stirring. What could be better than going to an exotic place, and yet somehow coming home? I feel blessed to be able to work here and indulge myself in some of the most gifted writing found anywhere on the net.
And if you donít believe all that, then hereís a personal revelation of my own. The very first piece I ever had published was accepted here at Stirring. Iíd be crazy not to say nice things about them, wouldnít I?

- MJM, Associate Editor
I found Stirring after about five months of looking for an online publication that I could be proud to see my work in. Stirring seemed to be a big name online-- all of the poetasters I knew checked in regularly and raved about it. The first thing I noticed about Stirring was the high quality of work and the diversity. Some online journals seem to have the same poem over and over with different linebreaks and titles, Stirring has so many different tones and personalities in the poetry it publishes.

- Letitia Trent, Poetry Editor
I was starting to believe the old saying, "Youth is wasted on the young" until I met Erin Elizabeth and Co. Erin's so incredibly driven and organized, I'd like to send a couple of my whinier PC students to her for life lessons! They'd learn a lot by seeing how she channels her energy into her own writing and has enough left over to create a beautiful place for poetry to live. And I'm guessing--by her easy, laid-back disposition--that she still finds time to have fun.

- Tania Rochelle, Poetry Editor
Stirring has been an incredible experience for me. The poems remind me constantly how important writing is -- and how it can change a world in a matter of moments. There are poems that have haunted me for days, images that still make themselves visible when I least expect it. By being an editor, I'm forced to leave the hectic rush of my everyday world and venture into one of poetry, of pain, hurt, ecstasy, love and living, of stories and other worlds -- if only for a few hours every month. To be able to choose, and share, those instances of recognition, of real life in poetry, is what makes being an editor for Stirring so incredibly important for me.

- Erika Lanier, Poetry Editor
When I first heard about Stirring I thought that online publishing was the "fake" way to get published. To be published in my eyes, meant that you had something printed, something you could hold on to. I don't know if I'll ever totally abandon my preconceived notions but I definitly have a new respect for e-publishing thanks to Stirring and some English and Computers Courses.

- Gina Liotta, Poetry Editor
Erin emailed me the following message after my work first appeared in 2River View, very early in my poetry publishing career:

I saw your work in the newest issue of 2River and was quite impressed. The last stanza of your piece, "Dreams Noir," was simply brilliant, and I thought to write to invite you to submit. We, at Stirring, would love to have a chance to read more of your work, if you're interested. When you have time, check us out. This isn't a promise of publication, since I am just one editor out of five, but I can promise that your work will make it through the first round of cuts, unscathed. :)

That I was delighted goes without saying. That I was a little amused is something Erin is only learning now -- because I had submitted "Dreams Noir" to Stirring previously, and the poem hadn't made it through the first round! But obviously that didn't keep me from submitting other poems. There's so much that Stirring does right. I love the speed with which the publication operates -- there's often just a couple of days between acceptance and seeing the work online. The comments you receive can be thrilling or painful, but they are (almost) always constructive! There are a definite select few that I keep handy for those days I'm discouraged about my writing...

- Michelle Cameron, Guest Editor, April 2002
being published in Stirring for the first time
was as perfect as drastic moonlight on my bare ass;
being chosen three times for the "Best of Stirring"
felt almost as good as triple orgasm with fierce foreplay. *grin*

- Dorothy Doyle Mienko, Guest Editor, February 2002
what makes Stirring so different from online publications is the personality of it. editrix Erin Elizabeth actually frequents other journals and publications to seek out poets whose work she admires, and personally invites them to submit work to Stirring. the amount of great pieces that are submitted --- as i remember quite well from guest editing --- are astounding and therefore the final cut allows each issue to truly shine. i also admire the eclectic array of poets in any given issue, usually some first-timers (either to Stirring or to publication in general) along with established poets, lending a nice atmosphere, an encouraging atmosphere to poets who are new to submitting, etc.

i believe, out of all the publications i've submitted to, Stirring has offered the most detailed comments on my submissions --- some negative and some positive, but all worth careful consderation on my part. i am so used to publications either saying 'yes we want your work' or 'sorry we don't want your work' that it's inspiring to receive feedback on what was great about any given poem or what just didn't work.

i'm always proud to be a part of any issue Stirring puts out, always glad to be among such a great company of poets and artists, and just to read through all the pieces. Stirring truly is a great, personable, and innovative publication, one i intend to keep reading and (hopefully) continue being a part of.

- kris t kahn, Guest Editor, December 2002
I love Stirring--the spare look and the highly readable quality of the content. Including this month, I've been Guest Editor twice now and would do it again in a heartbeat. However, when the lovely poet-in-chief asked me for an anecdote, I realized I didn't have one, and that's because the editorial process is such that editors don't talk to or communicate with each other about the month's submissions: "I like unadulterated ideas on each work, rather than debated attitudes," explained Erin in the guest editor's guidelines. That struck me as wise and practical, especially since it would be difficult and time-consuming to have editorial meetings over the Internet month after month. And anyway, the buck stops with Erin, who makes all final decisions, though I wonder if she would ever consider giving Guest Editors the final cut ;-)

- Cesar Garza, Guest Editor, October 2002 / July 2001
Stirring is, without a doubt, one of the finest poetry e-zines going. Month after month the poetry published on this site is well-crafted, edgy, witty, sometimes disturbing, always thought provoking. I know I am reading some of the best poetry being written today.

I count having been published in Stirring as one of my major accomplishments as a writer, especially after serving as a guest editor and seeing first hand the quality of submitted poems. How many of those poems did I read and wish I could have written myself? Unbelievable!

- Richard Jordan, Guest Editor, June 2002
for me, stirring has been a favorite site for poetry. it's well edited, on time and can be easily navigated. all work is treated with respect without having a lot of distractions surrounding the pieces. that makes for an enjoyable and quick read. thanks for being there. guest editing was a blast.

- Dan Sicoli, Guest Editor, September 2002
--Stirring's a lot like eating dog... I never said I'd even consider it, but now I eat dog at least once a month.

--I don't even like poetry. Writers are worse. Scribble scribble scribble. But Stirring, it's okay. I guess.

--Stirring voices the voices that voice the vociferous voicings of the intelligent, sensitive voices of the voiced world. And for four years now, or whatever. Neat.

--To be an internet publication for so long, Stirring must be doing something right. Or there's too many office jobs in the world now. One or the other.

- Logan Ryan Smith, Contributor
Of the small group of zines i still contribute to, Stirring is the most consistently vigorous and surprising and just downright superb in its content. What i like most about the thing though, is that, as a southern writer, with all the peculiarities that the term allows, i know my work will always find a sympathetic audience with Erin and company, who never lost their love, apparently, for grits or songs with a good tune in 'em. And i hope y'all don't mind: me, i just call it home.

- James Lineberger, Contributor

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