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Nicholas Liu

Singapore
59 Posts

Posted - 25 Jan 2005 :  22:19:42  Show Profile  Email Poster  Reply with Quote
I suppose there's nothing for it but to have another go. Right then:

quote:
-- would be interested to hear how you think it could practically be worked out within the constraints of a regular issue-based publication in the current context.


As it is there are already a few instant yeses per issue; what fraction of a minimum of 8 is a few? It's conceivable that with the addition of using a stockpile and soliciting more aggressively, every issue's submissions could, indeed, yield 8 poems per 3 months that are instant-yeses. (Of course this depends on the personal standards of the editor; some people could go through a quarter's worth of submissions to the Paris Review and not turn up a single instant-yes.)

In short, I believe it *is* possible, though by no means easy, to turn out a regular, QLRS-sized review without the editor having to settle for work he sees as just-publishable. Not that Hsien Min or anyone else is obliged to attain this; these things are all labours of love after all, and I can't quarrel with the validity of his reasons for not stockpiling or soliciting, though I don't share them.

quote:
-- Not to get too anal about it, but I do indeed think Cyril's poem is of sufficient interest to have been worth reading on QLRS. As a reader, it's not my call but I'm certainly glad the editor included it.


Fair enough; we disagree. We can leave it at that (though if you'd like to highlight what you found so noteworthy about the poem, I'd be interested in hearing it).

quote:
-- this still assumes a linear relationship: ie.

QLRS-publishable Submissions = TOTAL SUBMISSIONS - (Developmental Submissions mopped up by PBB & t2R)


I make no such assumption. Can you tell how my arguments imply that I do?

quote:
Consider instead that QLRS might choose to "develop" a different kind of writing or for a different sort of audience than PBB / t2R. This applies in particular to t2R, which eschews the literary label for an altogether different sort of ethic.


This is irrelevant to my point--that for whatever reason, the PBB and t2r visions give room for what is, by QLRS standards (as they appear to this reader; naturally I can't speak to the editorial standards as they actually exist in Hsien Min's head), rougher, less-polished work, and that because of this, QLRS does no harm to local literature by being closed to such work.

Note that my point, when I originally made it, was based off what I now realise was a faulty understanding of just how QLRS tries to fulfil its developmental aim; now that it appears that the fulfillment of this aim really is pretty much incidental to the process of just getting enough material for each issue, without resorting to what Hsien Min's mentioned, I don't think my point has any applicability to QLRS. It is, however, a bit of talk I intend to walk wrt the Whatnot once that gets started again.

quote:
Each publication might then have to consider how best it could distinguish its "developmental" stream from its more finished product, and deal usefully with the maybes on their own terms.

Would be good to hear any ideas you have on how best to manage the maybes and work-in-progresses and "almost-made-it"s. . . .


Not to be difficult, but I'm not really clear on what you're talking about. Perhaps if you'd give your take on these issues I would better understand what the issues actually are.

quote:
. . . setting aside the assumption that different e-publications mop up for each other or share a common pool of contributors.


Let me reiterate that I am making no such assumption.
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alf

Singapore
92 Posts

Posted - 25 Jan 2005 :  22:34:27  Show Profile  Email Poster  Reply with Quote
quote:
-- Not to get too anal about it, but I do indeed think Cyril's poem is of sufficient interest to have been worth reading on QLRS. As a reader, it's not my call but I'm certainly glad the editor included it.

Fair enough; we disagree. We can leave it at that (though if you'd like to highlight what you found so noteworthy about the poem, I'd be interested in hearing it).


-- I think this has been touched on, actually, so let's leave it at that.


quote:
-- this still assumes a linear relationship: ie.

QLRS-publishable Submissions = TOTAL SUBMISSIONS - (Developmental Submissions mopped up by PBB & t2R)


I make no such assumption. Can you tell how my arguments imply that I do? [quote]


"All I was saying is given that PBB and t2r are already for whatever reason giving space to less polished (by some standards, less accomplished) works, QLRS can afford to give less emphasis to its developmental aim."

".... for whatever reason, the PBB and t2r visions give room for what is, by QLRS standards .... rougher, less-polished work, and that because of this, QLRS does no harm to local literature by being closed to such work."


-- This is the issue I'm trying to get at, if I read you correctly: that the existence of PBB and t2R as alternative platforms for less polished work means QLRS can afford to be "stricter" (since the rest are already mopping up the lower-grade stuff).

Put it this way:

1. Should PBB and t2R close down or
2. Should they choose to become (in your terms) more "stringent" in their acceptance policies,

would your argument change?

One might also ask a question of fiction, for instance, where there isn't really a PBB/t2R equivalent of what QLRS does. Does it then imply that QLRS can/must be/is slacker with prose?

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Nicholas Liu

Singapore
59 Posts

Posted - 25 Jan 2005 :  22:48:24  Show Profile  Email Poster  Reply with Quote
quote:
-- This is the issue I'm trying to get at. Put it this way:

1. Should PBB and t2R close down or
2. Should they choose to become (in your terms) more "stringent" in their acceptance policies

would your argument change?


If no ezines sprung up to replace them (unlikely, IMHO), yes, naturally my argument would change. It is based on things-as-they-are (or at least as they appear to me) and not some unchanging ideal.
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alf

Singapore
92 Posts

Posted - 25 Jan 2005 :  23:00:45  Show Profile  Email Poster  Reply with Quote
quote:
If no ezines sprung up to replace them (unlikely, IMHO), yes, naturally my argument would change. It is based on things-as-they-are (or at least as they appear to me) and not some unchanging ideal.


At heart in the issue is my personal feeling (as committed reader) that there is yet scope for QLRS to give space to work which isn't necessarily absolutely top-notch quality (assuming always that the basic hygienics are observed). This is particularly so if the work in question is of some wider historical or literary interest (which fits nicely with the chronological imperative of a first-past-the-post per-issue approach), and certainly in keeping with the conception of QLRS as a quarterly JOURNAL (vs an e-zine, billboard etc etc).

Obviously whatever goes into an issue of QLRS is what the editors have considered worth publishing. Yet it is NOT in fact the de facto case that:

1. What gets submitted to QLRS is available to other publications.
2. What it throws out finds its way into the other publications
3. What it throws out would in fact be accepted by the other publications even should it be near/of QLRS merit.

I'll be monitoring more fully whether recent submissions to PBB were in fact rejects (or even parallel submissions) from QLRS. So far that's not been the case.

If your argument changes should there be no other alternative to QLRS (and I am arguing that there isn't really a viable alternative), what then could/should be done with the honourable mentions?

Again, might be useful to test assumptions against fiction, where there isn't a PBB/t2R equivalent.

Of course, another argument that sidesteps all of this is that NO publication, regardless of the existence or absence of alternatives/competition, should ever publish work that is not of 9999 sterling quality. Not sure if anyone is pitching this as a realistic or even desirable approach tho.
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Nicholas Liu

Singapore
59 Posts

Posted - 26 Jan 2005 :  00:40:05  Show Profile  Email Poster  Reply with Quote
quote:
At heart in the issue is my personal feeling (as committed reader) that there is yet scope for QLRS to give space to work which isn't necessarily absolutely top-notch quality (assuming always that the basic hygienics are observed). This is particularly so if the work in question is of some wider historical or literary interest (which fits nicely with the chronological imperative of a first-past-the-post per-issue approach), and certainly in keeping with the conception of QLRS as a quarterly JOURNAL (vs an e-zine, billboard etc etc).


There is nothing about JOURNALhood that implies concern with historical significance over pure quality (however the editor sees that) wrt creative works. Otherwise-mediocre poems by tsunami survivors, returned astronauts, Singapore's first openly homosexual MP etc. (or less outlandishly, quality-free juvenilia by now-well-known poets) perhaps deserve to be published, but QLRS is not where I as a reader would expect to see it. If there were a Quarterly Historical Interest Literary Review of Singapore, on the other hand. . . .

Of course these are all quote-unquote editorial calls. I wonder what the editor thinks?

quote:
Obviously whatever goes into an issue of QLRS is what the editors have considered worth publishing. Yet it is NOT in fact the de facto case that:

1. What gets submitted to QLRS is available to other publications.
2. What it throws out finds its way into the other publications
3. What it throws out would in fact be accepted by the other publications even should it be near/of QLRS merit.


With regard to specific poems, of course not. Nothing's ever 100%. My point is that the writers producing this writing will not be left with no fair-fit markets if, hypoethetically speaking, QLRS should suddenly happen to institute a zero-tolerance policy. Nor are they left with no more markets to try when QLRS rejects something of theirs now.

And this is assuming that these writers, for whatever reason, absolutely must appear in a local market. Remove this requirement and the problem evaporates altogether--anyone can place a poem in an ezine *somewhere*.

quote:
I'll be monitoring more fully whether recent submissions to PBB were in fact rejects (or even parallel submissions) from QLRS. So far that's not been the case.


I don't grok why you care.

quote:
If your argument changes should there be no other alternative to QLRS (and I am arguing that there isn't really a viable alternative), what then could/should be done with the honourable mentions?


Then Hsien Min would have a bit of a dilemma in his hands, wouldn't he? My argument as expressed earlier being to the effect that there should be no dilemma now.

quote:
Again, might be useful to test assumptions against fiction, where there isn't a PBB/t2R equivalent.


I have seen t2r take fiction in the past.

Anyway, I am quite willing to test assumptions once you show me what exactly these assumptions are. I'm not seeing them.
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alf

Singapore
92 Posts

Posted - 26 Jan 2005 :  16:23:28  Show Profile  Email Poster  Reply with Quote
Your premise:

That QLRS today can afford to adopt a zero-tolerance policy (towards anything less than an "A" grader) because there are other "fair-fit markets" in the local context for rejected works/writers.

Correct or not?

quote:
There is nothing about JOURNALhood that implies concern with historical significance over pure quality (however the editor sees that) wrt creative works. Otherwise-mediocre poems by tsunami survivors, returned astronauts, Singapore's first openly homosexual MP etc. (or less outlandishly, quality-free juvenilia by now-well-known poets) perhaps deserve to be published, but QLRS is not where I as a reader would expect to see it. If there were a Quarterly Historical Interest Literary Review of Singapore, on the other hand. . . .


-- now you're taking extreme examples. We're discussing the borderline "honourable mention" cases that already meet QLRS's floor hygiene standards, are we not?

And I'm saying, sometimes an interesting "B" piece is worth reading on QLRS, for reasons including, for instance, the historical.

If your belief is that the interesting "B" piece could easily see publication elsewhere, then I'd again say, not necessarily so.

quote:
My point is that the writers producing this writing will not be left with no fair-fit markets if, hypoethetically speaking, QLRS should suddenly happen to institute a zero-tolerance policy. Nor are they left with no more markets to try when QLRS rejects something of theirs now.


-- and I am saying this pt/assumption/premise is not strictly true in the local context today either (tho I agree if you extend it to the www at large, anything is possible).

In particular, genres outside poetry (and if you say, fiction) don't enjoy the same "safety net" that you seem to insist the other publications now provide (a pt upon which it seems we must agree to disagree)

For instance, one of the commonly highlighted problems with the local scene is there isn't space for long criticism/reviews of literary work. Taking the eg. of Leonard Ng's "it could have been so much more" review -- would it have been better for the scene all round if it'd been dropped altogether from publication?

So is it not better to have had it in, warts and all, courtesy of QLRS, than not at all?

Still, it's best to hear from the editor(s)

And would be interesting to see how/if metastatic v2.0 changes the dynamic.

====

quote:
I'll be monitoring more fully whether recent submissions to PBB were in fact rejects (or even parallel submissions) from QLRS. So far that's not been the case.

I don't grok why you care.


- because if it is indeed the case that PBB serves primarily as catchment for QLRS spillover, it's time to shut it down for good.
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Hsien Min

Singapore
49 Posts

Posted - 26 Jan 2005 :  19:09:52  Show Profile  Email Poster  Reply with Quote
Nic,

Sorry have been somewhat MIA, have been running around on other stuff... I did see your first long reply, which I remember being posted at some extraordinarily silly hour, like 4:04am, and which I read at probably 9-ish, so it's odd that it's disappeared. I'll start, nonetheless, where I last left off, though without, I hope, going over old ground.

1. In response to my note that it wasn't possible to infer my thoughts about a review from its publication on QLRS, you asked: "what then makes QLRS *QLRS* and not a loose assemblage of autonomous, specialised sub-reviews?" I'd say that it is precisely the variety of people with a variety of perspectives working on this common project that makes QLRS *QLRS*, and not (for example) HM's QLR.

2. To your question "As it is there are already a few instant yeses per issue; what fraction of a minimum of 8 is a few?" the answer is: typically about half (whether of 8 or of 12).

3. On historical significance vs pure quality, you remarked, "I wonder what the editor thinks?" Well, the editor prefers the latter, certainly, but isn't going to deny that a large enough amount of historical significance can fill a (v.) small gap in quality.

4. This one comes from Alf:

quote:
So is it not better to have had it in, warts and all, courtesy of QLRS, than not at all?

Still, it's best to hear from the editor(s)


I think so. Certainly I didn't expect QLRS Criticism to be instantly a hotbed of TLS-standard reviewing, but surely the outlet for literary reviewing to happen in Singapore at least starts to raise standards? (This in a scene where I used to have to crop a third off all the reviews I sent in to Life!)

5. A curious thing: you've both talked about PBB and t2r and even TMW... how come nobody's brought up Softblow? Isn't that a different model again?

Cheers,
HM
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Nicholas Liu

Singapore
59 Posts

Posted - 26 Jan 2005 :  20:10:02  Show Profile  Email Poster  Reply with Quote
Alvin:
quote:
Your premise:

That QLRS today can afford to adopt a zero-tolerance policy (towards anything less than an "A" grader) because there are other "fair-fit markets" in the local context for rejected works/writers.

Correct or not?


Not a premise so much as a claim, but yes.

quote:
-- now you're taking extreme examples.


Which is actually charitable--poetry by Singapore's first openly gay MP would be of great historical interest.

quote:
We're discussing the borderline "honourable mention" cases that already meet QLRS's floor hygiene standards, are we not?

And I'm saying, sometimes an interesting "B" piece is worth reading on QLRS, for reasons including, for instance, the historical.


Not 'for instance'--you said 'This is particularly so if the work in question is of some wider historical or literary interest'. The historical is exactly half of your particular argument (and I'm not at all sure what the other half means--'literary interest'?).

quote:
If your belief is that the interesting "B" piece could easily see publication elsewhere, then I'd again say, not necessarily so.


My belief is that interesting piece B has a fair shot at seeing publication in another zine, and interesting poet B almost certainly will be able to land some other interesting piece somewhere.

This is about opportunities for poets, not specific poems.

quote:
-- and I am saying this pt/assumption/premise is not strictly true in the local context today either (tho I agree if you extend it to the www at large, anything is possible).


What do you understand by 'fair-fit markets'? I mean markets a writer has a reasonable chance of cracking in a reasonable amount of time. I have difficulty believing that many wannabe writers exist for whom t2r is not a fair-fit market. t2r in particular because literary excellence isn't its main barometer in the first place.

quote:
In particular, genres outside poetry (and if you say, fiction) don't enjoy the same "safety net" that you seem to insist the other publications now provide (a pt upon which it seems we must agree to disagree)


You know, the more I discuss this, the more I realise I just don't care very much about safety nets. Is it difficult to place a review in Singapore if it's rejected by QLRS? Tragic; maybe you should post it on a forum. Or maybe you should start a blog--or your own ezine. Or who knows, you could keep at it and get better, and one day you'll look back and realise your earlier reviews were facile wastes of space.

Do I think some treasures (of criticism, poetry, whatever) slip through the cracks and are forever lost? Well, who knows--they're lost. I do think most of what slips through the cracks is simply dross, and it's not a catastrophe that the safety net isn't quite big enough to catch every instance of such.

quote:
For instance, one of the commonly highlighted problems with the local scene is there isn't space for long criticism/reviews of literary work.


This is a truism, but: if one out of every ten people who highlight this problem went and did something about it, the problem would vanish.

quote:
Taking the eg. of Leonard Ng's "it could have been so much more" review -- would it have been better for the scene all round if it'd been dropped altogether from publication?


I say yes. His review sheds no light on its subject and its acceptance only encourages more of the same. I don't believe that bad criticism is better than none.

Of course, what would have been even better for 'the scene' (a term I hate, by the way) than dropping Leonard Ng's review is if an editor had pointed out that the clothes he'd woven contained no emperor, and if he'd then gone back and revised his review so that it actually had some substance to show when it appeared in QLRS.

quote:
So is it not better to have had it in, warts and all, courtesy of QLRS, than not at all?


Erm--yes, it is not better. We could just as easily have had it courtesy of Blogspot; having it courtesy of QLRS only depreciates the phrase 'courtesy of QLRS'.

quote:
And would be interesting to see how/if metastatic v2.0 changes the dynamic.


In terms of non-fiction, it won't--there will be none in the Whatnot.

quote:
- because if it is indeed the case that PBB serves primarily as catchment for QLRS spillover, it's time to shut it down for good.


I don't understand why. Weren't you talking about what a loss it'd be if QLRS threw out all the interesting but less-accomplished pieces a while ago? And weren't you waffling on about different editorial visions, different target audience etc. just a while before that?

I wouldn't think less of a piece of mine just because it had to go through the submissions mill a few times before an editor accepted it. It's only polite of the editor to return the favour. I'm sure QLRS gets plenty of rejects from elsewhere.

Here I'll risk making a terrible faux pas in proving my point--QLRS, PBB *and* t2r have all taken rejects from (the one and only issue of) the Whatnot. What of it?

Edited by - Nicholas Liu on 26 Jan 2005 20:13:43
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Nicholas Liu

Singapore
59 Posts

Posted - 26 Jan 2005 :  20:48:38  Show Profile  Email Poster  Reply with Quote
Hsien Min:
quote:
Sorry have been somewhat MIA, have been running around on other stuff...


Well, some people have lives. Me, I'm an NSF clerk. . . .

quote:
I did see your first long reply, which I remember being posted at some extraordinarily silly hour, like 4:04am, and which I read at probably 9-ish, so it's odd that it's disappeared.


It is odd, and it was an extraordinarily silly hour.

quote:
In response to my note that it wasn't possible to infer my thoughts about a review from its publication on QLRS, you asked: "what then makes QLRS *QLRS* and not a loose assemblage of autonomous, specialised sub-reviews?" I'd say that it is precisely the variety of people with a variety of perspectives working on this common project that makes QLRS *QLRS*, and not (for example) HM's QLR.


Certainly, but I'd have expected the editor-in-chief to be a bit more hands-on wrt *final* acceptances, and not just a co-ordinator (not that that's an easy task either). You never veto anything, then? More power to you of course--I suppose the idea just takes a bit of getting used to.

quote:
To your question "As it is there are already a few instant yeses per issue; what fraction of a minimum of 8 is a few?" the answer is: typically about half (whether of 8 or of 12).


That's not such a small proportion, then.

quote:
Certainly I didn't expect QLRS Criticism to be instantly a hotbed of TLS-standard reviewing, but surely the outlet for literary reviewing to happen in Singapore at least starts to raise standards?


I disagree. The happily defunct Write Pages was an outlet for literary reviewing. I suspect it didn't do much for raising standards. . . .

I believe what raises the standards isn't the existence of criticism/reviews; it's the existence of criticism/reviews of (strange thought) *a high standard*. This is the age of the internet; there are limitless outlets available for just any old attempt at criticism.

quote:
A curious thing: you've both talked about PBB and t2r and even TMW... how come nobody's brought up Softblow? Isn't that a different model again?


I didn't mention Softblow because I didn't think it fair to discuss its quality, direction etc. so early in its development.

Edited by - Nicholas Liu on 26 Jan 2005 21:50:54
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alf

Singapore
92 Posts

Posted - 26 Jan 2005 :  23:26:55  Show Profile  Email Poster  Reply with Quote
quote:
Which is actually charitable--poetry by Singapore's first openly gay MP would be of great historical interest.


-- sure, if it's good enough to be publishable.

quote:
Not 'for instance'--you said 'This is particularly so if the work in question is of some wider historical or literary interest'. The historical is exactly half of your particular argument (and I'm not at all sure what the other half means--'literary interest'?).


-- sure, "historical" is broad enough for what I mean.

quote:
You know, the more I discuss this, the more I realise I just don't care very much about safety nets


-- ah, so. well, that's where our assessment of current literary activities differs.

I do think we haven't quite got enough of a critical mass going for us to be able to throw away anything that isn't absolutely A+. And while it is true enough that much of what slips through is dross, there is enough worthwhile material in the mix to be worth documenting.

Bodies of literary work don't spring forth fully-formed - and surely, there is value in retracing its evolutionary path through failure as well as success.

As it is, I'm not talking about keeping EVERYTHING; but you seem to take issue with the fact that QLRS doesn't always publish ONLY what you consider top-flight work. Whereas I think it often results in good reading in an otherwise lean landscape, and one of few credible sources of research.

What sort of filters and how fine to tune them is then a different proposition. That's where it makes more sense to start your own publication (with its own standards and criteria)

As reader, I see QLRS as a form of cultural curation; a service it performs with due care and regard for significance as well as what is already a high standard of quality, and a healthy dose of self-effacing irony -- not what you'd get from the blogosphere (at least not until search engines are far more comprehensive and refined than they are now)

quote:
For instance, one of the commonly highlighted problems with the local scene is there isn't space for long criticism/reviews of literary work.

This is a truism, but: if one out of every ten people who highlight this problem went and did something about it, the problem would vanish.


-- hardly so - the folks who point this out tend to be (overworked) reviewers themselves.


quote:
I don't believe that bad criticism is better than none.


-- right, at least your view is clear on the matter. You seem to believe that there is absolutely no substantive value at all in Leonard's review, rather than it being a question of taste/approach. Is that harsh a view really justified?

quote:
This is the age of the internet; there are limitless outlets available for just any old attempt at criticism


-- and let's just count the number of reviews of "From Idea to Ideal" there are on Google...

BTW, why don't you write one for the FORUM and show how it OUGHT to be done? (not mocking -- I'm sure you'd give it a good go)

quote:
"because if it is indeed the case that PBB serves primarily as catchment for QLRS spillover, it's time to shut it down for good."

I don't understand why. Weren't you talking about what a loss it'd be if QLRS threw out all the interesting but less-accomplished pieces a while ago? And weren't you waffling on about different editorial visions, different target audience etc. just a while before that?


-- Indeed, I don't think interesting but less-than-A*star pieces should go to waste (and I feel that if QLRS can conscionably find space for them it might consider doing so, and we've discussed stockpiles etc.)

That said, PBB should not exist solely to mop up this layer of work.

Instead, I'd expect it to be able to publish a wide range of work, INCLUDING select rejects from elsewhere, AS WELL AS top-draft quality work that comes to it as 1st pick and on its own terms -- because it's a different sort of publication with a different aesthetic and not because it's a FACTORY REJECT shop and nothing else.

Ie. it has no value for me as QLRS-Lite.

Differentiation yes, but not by price-point only, as it were. More like the Utah Jazz to QLRS's LA Lakers or what have you.

===
SOFTBLOW:

This from their editorial - "This journal is for unswerving lovers of poetry and those who appreciate how far poetry has come over time. At the same time, I am aware that poets like John Ashbery publish loads of crap that make it to "important" journals desperate to seem important to au courant readers. If you decide this is that kind of journal, I aim to prove you wrong. "

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Nicholas Liu

Singapore
59 Posts

Posted - 27 Jan 2005 :  00:39:57  Show Profile  Email Poster  Reply with Quote
.
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alf

Singapore
92 Posts

Posted - 27 Jan 2005 :  13:15:33  Show Profile  Email Poster  Reply with Quote
quote:
-- sure, if it's good enough to be publishable.

A non sequitur: it would be of great historical interest whether or not it's good.


-- should QLRS publish a poem by LKY that comes its way if it weren't Pushcart quality? I doubt it'd be blithely dropped without due consideration of its implications as a document.

Some stuff you keep because it's art,
Some stuff you take because it's news.
I'm not saying publish what is merely news, but I am saying it's worth publishing what isn't purely art.


quote:
-- sure, "historical" is broad enough for what I mean.

Its broadness is exactly the problem. I have no clue what it means to you.


-- we've had a good go at covering the ground.

quote:
ah, so. well, that's where our assessment of current literary activities differs.

I do think we haven't quite got enough of a critical mass going for us to be able to throw away anything that isn't absolutely A+.

What do you mean when you say we aren't able to do this?


-- if we picked only A+ material we'd run out of material for a regular journal. Surely, that's what HM is saying when he refers to a floating level of quality and the reality that half of his stock aren't instant "yes"es. And that's QLRS. The other pubs fare worse.

quote:
And while it is true enough that much of what slips through is dross, there is enough worthwhile material in the mix to be worth documenting.

How do you know?


-- well, as it is in your view there are some (< A+) pieces in QLRS this issue that you'd have thrown out...and I've already stated that some of them I feel are worth the documentary value at the least.


quote:
If a certain sort of work finds no existing venues, it will form its own venue if that breed of writing has any life in it at all.


-- Not quite yet. You're assuming that the creators of fine ficton, verse, criticism etc. are also equally competent in generating forums/publications to support their breed of work. That's only partly true, surely.

quote:
-- hardly so - the folks who point this out tend to be (overworked) reviewers themselves.

Overworked as reviewers, but as editors of reviews? The complaint you mention is that there's a lack of *space* for criticism, not a lack of criticism. Insofar as that's concerned, it doesn't matter if they churn out five excellent reviews or critical essays a day--they're doing nothing to create a space for it.


--- We're talking about practitioners including HM, and Sor Fern the erstwhile books editor of ST LIFE! -- who HAVE done what they can to create a space for it and yet see the paucity of criticism/critical space as an issue. The view: not enough reviewers; not enough places for reviews to be seen.

I'd question the implication of your statements -- that if a work doesn't get published SOMEHOW = it must be crap.

That said, I do think there is room for more stringent/critical reviews, and that's where your "filters" might properly be applied.

By all means, have a critical go at the work you feel is substandard in some way, but at least the work is out there for others to consider.

Before I answer: in what sense are you using 'substantive'?[/quote]

-- "meaty; prompting thought". What else did you think?

>>>>>>>>There is no reason why a reject from elsewhere should not be top-draft, quality work as you see it. ....Rejection from one zine should not, by your philosophy, in any way indicate low quality--in fact, 'quality' itself would be a misleading word.



-- It's a matter of position in the market, and the pt is pursuant to your claim that venues like PBB provide "fair-fit" markets for QLRS rejects. Some of these "table scraps" other publications will consider fair-fit -- that's true and that's perfectly fine.

But if that is indeed the market perception, and it is not going to get anything BUT table scraps in its inbox, then there is no point operating it as a separate publication.

If a writer had a poem he/she considered of Paris Review quality would he/she submit it to Paris Review 1st or to QLRS? And would QLRS want to be in the position of ONLY receiving whatever Paris Review does not (for whatever reason) want and worse, being seen permanently as strictly 2nd-choice? I think not.

Instead, publications like QLRS have value regardless of its relative int'l literary standing to Paris Review, precisely because it (also) has access to and carries quality material that isn't necessarily available to PR (work, say, of direct relevance to Singapore)

Curiously, how would Metastatic play this?

Edited by - alf on 27 Jan 2005 13:46:24
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alf

Singapore
92 Posts

Posted - 27 Jan 2005 :  14:02:29  Show Profile  Email Poster  Reply with Quote
???? What happened to Nic's last reponse ???
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Nicholas Liu

Singapore
59 Posts

Posted - 27 Jan 2005 :  21:40:37  Show Profile  Email Poster  Reply with Quote
I'd like to know that too! It's not due to an edit by me; there'd be a notice at the botttom if I had (such as you'll see on this one). And I did edit it a few times and check that it was still fine afterwards, which it was. Very strange and very annoying.

Hsien Min, do you have a log of forum activity? Any idea what's causing this?

Edited by - Nicholas Liu on 27 Jan 2005 21:43:52
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alf

Singapore
92 Posts

Posted - 27 Jan 2005 :  22:58:42  Show Profile  Email Poster  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Nicholas Liu

I'd like to know that too! It's not due to an edit by me; there'd be a notice at the botttom if I had (such as you'll see on this one). And I did edit it a few times and check that it was still fine afterwards, which it was. Very strange and very annoying.

Hsien Min, do you have a log of forum activity? Any idea what's causing this?



It might well be my replies (and re-edits) screwing up your reply (which is one record behind in the forum database), tho I can't imagine how short of human error (mine).

At any rate, I've disabled my moderator/administrator rights to help prevent accidental overrides of your posts when I post. Not sure if it'd help.
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