The short form: An interview with the editors of ‘Spry,’ a new literary journal

SpryWhat are your future plans for Spry?

AJ: That actually leads into my last question: What are your wildest hopes and dreams for Spry?

Erin: I’m hoping it will somehow bring me a little closer to becoming best friends with my literary heartthrobs.

Linsey: Hahaha, count it.

AJ: Oh? And who are those?

Erin: Hmm, Anne Lamott, Mary Karr, Augusten Burroughs and Caroline Knapp, who is BY FAR my all time favorite, but it would be hard to be besties with her because unfortunately she has passed away.

Linsey: Can I add Jennifer L. Knox to this list?

Erin: You can add anyone. Wish we could put e.e. cummings on the list too.

Linsey: Aimee Bender too! Oh yeah, and Frank O’Hara

Erin: But in all seriousness, I hope that Spry grows over time.

Linsey: It’d be awesome to be able to put out something in print, to showcase the incredible work we’ve been receiving, for one.

Erin: I hope its a respected journal.
Oh yes, to put something in print.

About the Editors:

AJ: How did you two meet?

Erin: Well, Linsey and I both started our graduate program at Fairfield University together.

AJ: You guys were roomies, right?

Erin: We were, but not until our third residency

Linsey: Not at first! If I remember right, we sort of just found out down the line that we were both from the Southcoast of MA, but we didn’t end up rooming together until much later.

Erin: Yes, we talked about living about a town away from each other during our first residency, but we never really started being close until our third semester.

AJ: So, how did you go from MFA classmates to lit mag co-founders? Was it something you guys talked about during school?

Linsey: Well, we were both part of the same writing group, which was where I think we started to start relying on each others’ writing strengths for different things.

Erin: Also, we both started reading for Mason’s Road, Fairfield’s lit journal since we started at Fairfield U.

Linsey: In the third semester, we ended up running a few extra things by each other since, for example, I knew that Erin would have some ideas that could help me get through the semester – and somewhere in there, with our Mason’s Road experience, we started to think like, “Hey, maybe this is something worth pursuing.”

Erin: and then we both went to become editors for Mason’s Road.

AJ: When did the words “hey, we should start a literary journal” first occur to one or both of you?

Erin: I think it was during our final semester… mid semester maybe.

AJ: Was there an a-ha moment?

Erin: We were both editing for Mason’s Road’s busiest issue ever, and we both had a lot of writing still left to do (and editing) for our own theses and then we had to plan our seminars, etc and manage our social lives AND work full time at our non-writing related jobs. We were busy…. and I think we just thought… What’s next?

AJ: Why start a literary journal? (Do you prefer ‘journal’ to ‘magazine’? I don’t want to be gauche.)

Erin: I don’t have a preference. Call it what you may.

Linsey: Lol, me either really! I think part of the reason that starting a lit journal felt like such an exciting next step for us was that it seemed so natural for our passions – as writers, we were so excited by so much of the work we were getting to read in Mason’s Road and getting to be part of the process for writing we really believe in and think the world will be blown away by is kind of something that I feel like Erin and I continually took away as valuable from our experience editing.

In Closing:
AJ: I have exhausted my list of questions, ladies. Anything I haven’t asked that you’d like to address, or anything you’d like to add?

Erin:  I think one of my biggest fears when we started was that people wouldn’t take us serious, but it has been lovely to see the interest in Spry, either by the submissions we are receiving or the people helping us spread the word, etc. It’s just been so encouraging.

Linsey: Oh man, yeah, that has been one of the most amazing parts of putting together this first issue – the support we’ve been receiving from just all ends of this thing.

That’s such a good point too, Erin, about the initial fear.

Erin: And the submissions are SO EXCITING.
Oh, I do have one more thought.  would just want to mention even though we kind of did before, that like, people don’t have to submit 2-line poems.

Linsey: Oh yeah.

Erin: We’ve gotten a LOT of poetry, and a bunch of it is short just to be short, I think.

Linsey: Yeah, since poetry kind of governs itself by economy of words already it doesn’t have to force itself into being EXTRA short! (Not just for us anyway) ((unless it wants to))

Erin: I mean, if we got a haiku and loved it we would still publish it, but it doesn’t need to be 17 syllables to excite us.

AJ: So basically, you want people to write to a natural length for whatever they’re writing?

Erin: Yes, just not to go past our word count.

Interested in submitting to Spry? Visit www.sprylit.com for more information.

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12 thoughts on “The short form: An interview with the editors of ‘Spry,’ a new literary journal

  1. Oh, I like what you did with the pages. For a second, I was wondering where the rest was and then I noticed the pages on the bottom. That is pretty sweet.

    Also, thank you so much for interviewing us and sharing the word about Spry. (Also, thank you for removing all my “lol”

    • I felt like I needed to break it up; this was one loooong interview about the short form! I hope folks click through; I mentioned the breaks in the intro and at the bottom of each page, so hopefully they will.

  2. Thanks so much for this, AJ! I love this layout a whole lot, too. it builds up suspense and is so nicely presented. You’re amazing! And like Erin said, thank you so so much for taking the time to interview us and help us spread the word. :)

    • This is totally my pleasure, Linsey. I’m excited to be able to help spread the news, and you guys are a good interview. Plus, I love to do interviews, and I don’t get to do them that much now that I’m not reporting, so it was a win-win-win!

  3. Pingback: Weekly Internet Finds: Take 19

  4. Pingback: Spry is Live! (some favorites from the first issue of a new online journal.) « The Garret

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