Last Wednesday was the launch of my last issue as Editor In Chief of Island Writer magazine. It was a good run: I started as Editorial Assistant on Issue 8.1, was Managing Editor for 8.2, and Editor In Chief for 9.1, 9.2 and 10.1. I learned a lot over that period, and contributed to the magazine, I think. Island Writer is now available online: you can download it here. It wasn’t, before. Island Writer has six staff now, instead of three as when I initially started on it. I am not the person who instigated that change, but I campaigned for it and helped find some of the wonderful staff we have now, including Simeon Goa, our Art Director, who also did the cover you can see at right, and Kim Nayyer, the very steady Creative Non-Fiction and Writer’s Life editor, whose support has been invaluable. Lana Betts, our efficient Editorial Assistant, does not have a personal website. Nor does Lynnette Kissoon, our fearless fiction editor whose daughters I accidentally traumatized by inviting to a launch at which there were readings not suitable for young ears (sorry). Sheila Martindale is the poetry editor, and a venerable poet in her own right.

I started everyone using Google Docs for those things edited by multiple people online, and worked with Simeon to try to streamline a lot of that process as much as possible. We started having editing parties, which got us through copy-editing and proofreading in record time, without anyone feeling too much of a stress-crunch.

In addition to any contributions I may have made, I learned a lot while working on Island Writer: I learned the mad giddy rush of making changes to ones house style-sheet, I learned about formulaic rejection letters, I learned about being very polite under all circumstances (which, if you read last week’s post, you’ll note is not a skill I choose to exercise at all times). I learned about organizing book launches, and the fact that there is such a thing as too much cheese, but not such a thing as too many post-it notes.

It’s been a great run.

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