Jim Harrington interviewed me this month about the editorial process behind Jokes Review. Jim's blog, "Six Questions For..." has been around forever. When I first started submitting stories well over a decade ago, it was one of the first sites I bookmarked as an archive of small literary journals. It's still a useful resource. In addition to listing out a huge collection of lit journals, it features an interview with the editor of each journal.
Here's the first question from Jim's interview with me:
SQF: Why did you start this magazine? Peter Clarke: I wanted to create a magazine that combines highbrow quality with lowbrow entertainment value. There aren’t many places that publish truly wild writing. When they do, it’s usually gimmicky or full of genre stereotypes. Plenty of great writers have a secret treasure trove of absurd writing. For example, James Joyce’s letters to Nora. Even Roald Dahl (author of “Charlie and Chocolate Factory” and other children’s stories) published several over-the-top comedies and even a few sex novels. Weird and unhinged writing goes all the way back to the birth of the novel with Rabelais and Cervantes. Yet the average respectable literary journal shies away from anything edgy or unpolished. Drunken rants, absurd manifestos, and outsider scribbles can all be great literature. That’s what Jokes Review wants: we want Rabelais for the 21st century.