Once I had a dream…
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No, scratch that.
Once I had an idea…
Eh, scratch that, too.
Once I wanted to start a magazine for new writers because dammit, I needed something else to do besides whine about my own publishing failures…
I have to admit that when I began Lost in the Dark, the online horror and dark fantasy zine, I was an idiot. I was a writer who could draw, and I’m organizational almost to the point of being anal, but those were pretty much the scope of my abilities. My computer programs have the tendency to put me in the foulest of moods, not to mention make me crazier than I already am, and I wasn’t sure I could pull off creating a magazine from scratch. I knew of a few places to advertise, but it took a lot of searching, making lists, and typing the same thing over and over to start putting the word out. Save for my days as my high school yearbook’s copy editor, and helping out my kids with their creative writing assignments (ssshhhh), I had zero editorial experience. Maybe I had no business creating a zine for new and emerging writers. Still, I plodded along, teaching myself and learning from others, scratching my head repeatedly, crying a little, yelling more, and as I did all that, I began to feel better about what I was doing, because some wonderful stories, poems, and reviews found me. That was it. That was what made it worth it (although very few people know that on the morning of April Fool’s Day, I uploaded Issue #1, and nothing showed up. Figured.).
I no longer feel so much like an idiot, although this computer and its programs are still on probation, and my brain still wobbles occasionally. I really feel that Lost in the Dark, though still small, is a success. We’ve had two great issues; the poetry and reviews/articles sections have grown; the contest is going splendidly; and our staff is expanding. Jeff Edwards, a really great writer, has been the Reviews Editor since the submissions period for Issue 2, and his help and brainstorming has been wonderful. Now we have a Poetry Editor, and she’s one of Lit.org’s own: Penelope Allen. I know from reading her comments and poetry (and publishing two of her poems, with one more coming in the Autumn Issue) over the last year that she’s on top of her game, and she’ll take an enormous load off this poetry-challenged editor. We still don’t have a Fiction Editor, but I have faith that the right person will come in time.
The letters and comments I’ve gotten from fans and the writers that have been showcased in the magazine have been so encouraging and lovely. People seem to really love the artwork and layout, and it gives me the extra confidence to keep on doing what I’m doing in the same way. So, this essay/article/whatever is just a little thank you to everyone who’s supported me over there, and all the writers at Lit who’ve contributed their great pieces and helped make Lost in the Dark what it is, and what it will continue to be.
On the internet: http://www.lostinthedark.net
"S is for SUSAN who perished of fits
T is for TITUS who flew into bits..."--The Gashlycrumb Tinies, by Edward Gorey