Putting together this issue of Eclectica has been quite a learning experience! When my co-editor and I planned on eight weeks to get the first issue out, I had no idea that I would be here typing with two hours left to go and much work left before I am ready to actually put the issue up! In fact, it looks like it might even be a day late... but it will be well worth it.
This first issue of the magazine is both much more and much less than I hoped. Let me dispose of the much less part first. There are some things missing from this issue that I hoped to have in place, namely the interactive message system and the guestbook. These features will be available next issue. The design and layout is certainly not set in stone-- but I am not going to sacrifice compatibility with all users for proprietary markup tricks. Thus I abandoned tables (they look terrible in text browsers) and have only used Netscape/Internet Explorer markup where it will not be a hindrance or cause a loss for other users. Finally, some of the categories of writing that we wished to have represented simply are not here. Why? Most likely because we are not yet a paying market and have not come up with a good way to become so. Until such time, I have only this to offer writers: exposure alongside some fine, fine authors, a net-presence that will lead other readers and even editors to your work and the possible inclusion of your work in a yearly print anthology. In addition, work accepted here may be nominated for the Pushcart Prize as well as several net-based awards!
I don't want to dwell on the negative aspects though, because there is SO MUCH GOOD ABOUT THIS ISSUE. If you read this magazine, you will see all of the great work for yourself, but let me just point out the most important thing: there are a lot of good authors in this issue. Some of them are net-friends of mine, some of them are completely new to me. Our featured author this month, William Lantry, is one of the better poets you will find walking around today, and what you see on these pages is only a sampling of his fine work. The rest of the poetry, essays, reviews-- even a one-act play!-- are top-notch, thus allowing me to realize my goal of not simply putting out anything that came my way, but putting out quality reading for those on the World Wide Web.
Before I go, I would like to thank all of the people who helped me get this first issue out: my co-editor Tom Dooly, Tanya Piatanova, Matt Galvano, my mom Debi for moral support, all my friends who have talked to me and had to listen to me much more than they probably wanted, and all of the wonderful friends and writers who contributed to this issue!
I hope that you enjoy this magazine as much as I have enjoyed putting it together. I look forward to many more issues with new writers, new features and new ideas-- but always with the same high editorial standards. Please, enjoy the magazine and take the time to write to the authors that you find most enjoyable-- they would love to hear from you!
October 6, 1996