From 2006-2009 (or thereabouts), I was an editor at In/Words Magazine & Chapbook Press at Carleton University. My first published poem was in In/Words (Volume 5, Issue 3, February 2006, on the same page as Ben Ladouceur). I worked editing for the magazine, editing chapbooks, and helping to make a monthly open-mic reading series happen. We produced a huge volume of material (see the picture above of my own primary stash of In/Words and In/Words-related publications). I count myself lucky to have been a part of that community. My identity as a writer and a publisher can be traced to the first editorial meeting I attended in the summer of 2006 at Mike’s Place.
rob mclennan recently sent around a set of questions to quite a few of the editors and writers who were around during my years with the mag, and the collected answers were culled and organized by mclennan in this fantastic piece at Open Book: Ontario. My favourite part is Peter Gibbon describing our little group developing “a vicious loyalty toward each other’s writing.” Rob Winger, an influential poet and teacher for all of us in the In/Words community, chimes in at the end with some unbelievably kind words.
Thank you rob, and thank you to the consistently wonderful people at Open Book.
In/Words is still running. They have a great editorial team keeping the ship afloat, and Dave Currie has got the monthly reading series in excellent shape (building off of Justin Million’s invaluable work reshaping it). Somehow the mag is into its twelfth year, which is astonishing. If you’re in Ottawa, drop in to the Clocktower on the last Wednesday of the month.
The truly embarrassing photo below is of Amanda Besserer (left), myself (centre), and Peter Gibbon (right) in the quad at Carleton, Fall 2007 (I think?), trying to convince undergrads to pick up free literary magazines and chapbooks.