From the Editors
Since taking over as editors in January 2008, we’ve endeavored to ensure that Frogpond has a presence in places where everyone—students, teachers, professors, as well as members of the general public—have the opportunity to learn what’s current in the genre of haiku and its related forms. Toward this end, we successfully applied to have the journal listed in the scholarly indexes MLA International Bibliography and Humanities International Complete. We were also vigilant about maintaining Frogpond’s presence in a number of sources that provide information to poets searching for the right places to submit their work, such as Poet’s Market, Poets and Writers, Duotrope, Dustbooks, etc.
Despite the Internet’s vast resources, libraries still play a crucial role in archiving material. They provide the hard copy that constantly remains accessible in spite of ever-changing technologies. A check of the Library of Congress holdings resulted in a surprise—the issues of Frogpond in the catalogue went no further than 1994! We are grateful to Sara Striner, Head, Government and Periodicals Section, Library of Congress, for her quick and positive response to our alert about the missing issues. With the help of John Stevenson and Paul Miller, we gathered the missing 49 copies and shipped them to Ms. Striner in November, 2011. They will be bound and available in the spring of 2012. Starting with this issue, each new one will automatically be sent to the Library of Congress so that a gap between publications never occurs again.
We have also been been keeping track of where our contributors reside. Across the 12 issues we have edited, submissions have come from almost 100 places: 47 U.S. states, six Canadian provinces, and 44 other countries. In North America, most published were writers from California, New York, Washington, Ontario and Virginia. There were no submissions at all from Mississippi, Montana and Oklahoma—there’s HSA work to be done in these states!
With this, Fp’s largest issue (188 pages), we have accomplished the goals we set for ourselves and the time has come for others to take over. We will miss many things: the excitement of reading new and fresh haiku, linked verses, and haibun; the intellectual stimulation provided by provocative and innovative articles and feature reviews; and, the rewarding exchanges with contributors. What we won’t miss is the daily grind. Many readers might assume that we were busy only during the three, two-month submission periods when thousands of items filled our in-boxes and PO box (yes, there are still many snail-mailers, bless them—especially those who kept sending U.S. stamps to Canada with the SASE). But, in reality, the editor was involved with Fp almost every day of the year (even when travelling). The duties went beyond evaluating about 15,000 items that were submitted each year and writing to those whose work was accepted and to those whose work was not. There were also other responsibilities: working with the HSA Executive, mailing orders for back issues, answering a broad range of questions, dealing with rudeness, dealing with praise . . .
Then there was the actual creation of the journal. Some items needed hard editing; every item had to be laid out and proofread, and the index had to be compiled and checked. Usually we went through four sets of corrections with text and tinkering with layout, hoping for a perfect issue. And, of course, there were occasional unexpected and time-consuming snags involving technical matters too detailed to describe here. We are grateful that they were all solved with the help of the competent and affable people at Pennsylvania’s Sheridan Press, which printed all 12 issues.
We know that the new editor, Francine Banwarth, will also be driven to actively solicit and select content that is stimulating to the mind as well as to the emotions and we look forward to seeing her personal stamp on the journal—the physical redesign as well as the permutations to content. We also know that she will enjoy the same support that we have received from the HSA Executive and, especially from you, our readers and contributors.
And, so, we bid you adieu.
George Swede, Editor
Anita Krumins, Assistant Editor
Box 279, Station P
Toronto, ON M5S 2S8