Hectic Holidays at Paper Nautilus

November 21, 2014

Thanksgiving and the other upcoming holidays often lead many of us to frantically cleaning our houses, filling up grocery carts and enduring lines, cooking for large gatherings of family, and battling the clean up. In short, it can be an exercise in time-management, multi-tasking, and persistence – which is similar to how we are (or, more accurately, I am) feeling at Paper Nautilus.

Now may be a good time to disclose my recent career change, and the impact that’s having on my timelines for all of our various projects here. In August, I quit my full-time corporate job to more fully devote my time to teaching at the collegiate level. By “more fully,” I actually mean teaching six classes this semester, so it is very nearly the only thing I spend my time on most days. Without getting into too many more details about the “why” behind this choice (this is, after all, a site for Paper Nautilus and not a personal blog), I do think it’s important you know that this is the reason behind some of our recent delays in production.

For now, this means that the results of the Vella Chapbook contest will more likely be announced around Christmas-time, since I will have completed my courses and submitted grades at that point. Paper Nautilus 2014 is about halfway through layout, so that will be completed between now and then as well. This is only about 3-4 weeks later than described on the call for submissions for both projects, but I do still find these delays as frustrating as you do – perhaps more so. I understand that sending your work to us, either for inclusion in our annual issue or as a chapbook manuscript, is an act of trust; making folks wait can be somewhat emotional for some submitters, or may feel as if your work is not valued. Please know that is not the case one bit, and that I hate to make you wait like this.

My staff and I are currently discussing Pushcart Nominations, which are due in a little over a week. That’s a deadline that cannot be changed, so I’ve bumped it to the front of the to-do list. I believe strongly that our contributors should have the opportunity to be recognized for their work, and think this is worth prioritizing for that reason. Check back soon for the results!

While it makes things somewhat messy for right now, it will result in a number of wonderful changes here once I have a clearer grasp on what future timelines make sense. For example, we may shift what times of year we hold submission windows or release issues, to better align with my downtime outside of the academic calendar. This may even allow for expansion of our vision, since the summers are now wide open for me to focus on new ideas.

While it’s a crazy time of year, it’s also about expressing our thanks, right? This year, among the many things I am grateful for, I am so excited to have such remarkable, memorable work sent to us, and the joy of being able to help make it accessible to others. Thank you to all of you – and to my editorial staff – for making that possible.

Lisa Mangini


2 Responses to “Hectic Holidays at Paper Nautilus”

  1. Sandy Soli said

    Lisa, you can do this! I always enjoy your commentaries and if you decide (next year?) to start a blog, I’ll sign on for it. Meanwhile, I did not enter the contest or send you a submission this year–just enjoy being part of the readership. Take a deep breath, then another one. And take joy in the season and your classes.

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