trout [ 6 ]
Tony Murrow

One of the best and worst things about internet publishing is that there aren't any real deadlines: there is no printer telling you that your last chance to make the presses is such-and-such a date and no retailer asking you when in hell she can expect the hundred copies she already has forward orders for.  For us the idea of publishing to schedule was too easy to dismiss. Now we seem to publish when we have just enough material of just the right sort and when we choose, of course. Why publish when you've nothing worthy of publication? Eat when you are hungry; sleep when you are tired; publish when the need is there. If only life were so easy.

Because so much of our lives is drawn from scheduled work, unscheduled tasks and pleasures are the last to be indulged. Robert, Brian and I have quite a few other things on the go everybody does. Robert has just had another book published, the complete Star Waka series, portions of which have appeared in earlier issues of Trout. Brian manages a complex university library internet site and I well, I potter about in a state of busy-ness which only sometimes seems real to me.
We three meet 'every now and then' to wade through submissions we have each read and appraised to our own bents. Lately it occurs to me that I should focus on prose Robert and Brian generally out-vote me on matters of poetry. It is uncanny how a certain sort of poem grates with one and lights up the eyes of another with such consistency as those seen in this latest issue of Trout. Yet the poets, Robert and Brian, often get it right. Judy Haswell's poem The Rain in Japan was one of ten poems selected for The Best of Online. Some of our poets are also featured in the debut of US-based online journal Riding the Meridian.

Of course, all good poets deserve favour. In this issue we have some excellent new works from Robert Berry, Ahila Sambamoorthy, Nina Seja, Tracey Slaughter and other poets of the Pacific Rim. But, there are also a few short stories, my favourites cover the raw (Karl Willis's Working Class) and the cooked (Pat Klassen's A Good Name) of the genre. There are some longer pieces here. We hope you find the time to read them all, but, if you don't, 'no worries'. Life is all too casual on the internet.

© 1999

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