• Ramola D
  • Launching Delphi Quarterly in Jan 2013--a journal of writer-interviews
Launching Delphi Quarterly in Jan 2013--a journal of writer-interviews
Written by
Ramola D
December 2012
Written by
Ramola D
December 2012

Sometimes an idea gestates for ages and blooms on seeming impulse--in October, talking with Neil Shepard, poet, founder of the Vermont Studio Center Writers Program, and long-time senior editor of the Green Mountains Review, about his new book Vermont Exit Ramps, which I had just started to read, I asked to interview him, possibly for my own blog Afterviews, and simultaneously decided to take the plunge instead and start up this journal for interviews, this idea brewing forever at the back of my mind. 

(I do like writer-interviews--read them often in journals, look for them online, and occasionally do some of my own. I've been fortunate to interview some very intriguing writers, and would like to continue doing so...)

My thought though was that this would be a space open to all writers, including those without a book yet, who are just beginning to publish individual poems or stories or essays in journals. In my note to writer-friends I sent a couple weeks ago, here is what I said:

"Delphi Quarterly hopes to be a space where writers who are new or old, young or older, emerging or established, obscure or known/unknown, prize-winning, small-press or big-press, regional, national, or international--just beginning to write and publish or having practiced writing for years, if not decades--can become part of a global conversation on writing. The world has shrunk, traditional media giants are (we hope) no longer giant, the old canon-makers and gate-keepers, we believe, are/should no longer be the only ones speaking and being heard, and it is up to us as writers to create new paradigms of recognition and inclusion.

In which spirit, I'm asking all the writers I know to please, widely spread the word, and to actively participate, yourselves, in including the writers you know who are younger than you, or older than you, whose voices are being drowned variously by the babble and hype and tokenism and biases of mainstream publishing, by contributing interviews yourself, small or large.

If you or a friend/student/mentor/professor/colleague of yours has recently (or even earlier) published a book, won an award for a story or poem/s or essay, published a significant poem or group of poems, or story, or essay, produced a play--Delphi is interested in all writers of fiction, poetry, plays, ecological and creative non-fiction--or if you have read a book recently that moved you, this is a venue for interviews with the writer.

Please note, to honor all writers working to publish their manuscripts, interviews can highlight a single piece of writing, and not necessarily a whole book. Interviews can comprise a few brief questions or run up to 2000 words, and will include bios of the writer and interviewer, as well as links to their work and websites online.

Delphi will also publish a quarterly compilation of any submitted news of literary publications/productions from current or alumni interviewers and interviewees."

The name Delphi of course comes from Delphi--the oracle at Delphi--here is more on the subject: http://delphiquarterly.wordpress.com/about/

I would like Delphi to be an inclusive space that equitably represents men and women writers, and stays widely diverse and free-ranging. Our launch issue will feature two men writers--Neil Shepard and Justin Sirois--mainly because of the way in which Delphi began (as I note above), and thanks to the energy and enthusiastic response of writer and friend Dan Gutstein, who will interview Justin Sirois--and I am looking for women writers to be featured, either by Jan 15 for the launch, or for the April issue. Of course, for future issues, I am looking for interviews with men and women writers both.

I ask anyone reading this post to consider interviewing a writer you know or whose work you love--or, if you recently had a book out or something significant published, within the literary cadre, that is (no genre fiction), please talk to your writer friends, offer to round-robin interviews maybe, find an interviewer! And let me know, at [email protected] Perhaps we can profile you and your work in an upcoming issue.

Delphi has a new co-editor, Joe Ponepinto. I am still open to working with other writers on the journal, and if anyone out there would like to help edit--which really means at this point helping to ensure content for upcoming issues and doing interviews yourself as you can and wish to, please get in touch with me.

Delphi Quarterly will launch (after the world has ended:) in mid-January 2013. No, please, the world cannot end--I hope the Mayan calendar was practicing a metaphor! The website is still being fine-tuned, and will probably get its own .com name soon, but you can take a peek here: http://delphiquarterly.wordpress.com/

I will post again when the new issue launches. And I'll close with my mantra for Delphi--if you're a writer, please, interview a writer! Let us change the spoken word in the marketplace together.


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