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The Suisun Valley Review was established as a way for the students of Solano Community College to learn the art and craft of editing a literary journal while putting together their own magazine once a year. Since the first issue was published in 1981, student editors have collaborated on over thirty issues of SVR, carefully selecting the contents from new and established writers from across the U.S. and abroad. The students are also directly involved with creating the overall design aesthetic and narrative of each issue. Each spring, all of their hard work and endless creative energy is repaid with a bound collection of prose and poetry, sold and kept as a testament to sleepless nights.
SVR's 2014 Submission Guidelines

Monday, February 28, 2011

Hello? Hello? HELLOOO????

Writers where are you? We desperately need your submissions. Without you we cannot exist (and I know that's a cheesy cliche line, but unlike most of the times it's used, this is actually true.) We need you to submit any poems, short stories, or artwork that you have ASAP. Yes I know the deadline isn't until April 1st, but the sooner the better!! We're on track to start reviewing pieces by mid-March. Don't make me beg (though in a way I already am.)

Now as for the class, (English 058) it's going along quite smoothly. Having reviewed and voted on our first practice packet, we're on to the second. The purpose behind the practice packets is to get the class up to speed on what makes a good poem or short piece of fiction, outside of just the content of the piece. By doing this we're prepping ourselves to read and effectively critique YOUR pieces (that you're emailing right after you finish reading this...) so that we're not overlooking any small details that would make us decide that your piece is an excellent one and worthy to be published in the magazine.

Now if you're wondering how we determine whether a piece is good enough or not, well that's simple. Each person reads, critiques and anazlyzes each piece individually, without any comparison to any other piece or any kind of bias whatsoever. Then, each student is allowed one vote for each piece. The votes are "yes" or "no". If a piece gets a seventy-five percent (75%) majority, then it is a definite answer. That is, if 75% of the class vote "yes" on a piece, it will definitely be in the yes pile. If 75% of the class vote "no", then it will definitely not be in the magazine this year. Now if we do not get a 75% majority either "yes" or "no", then it is considered a maybe. Each maybe is then discussed in class by each side (yes's and no's.) Each side is hoping to convince the others to vote their way and therefore get a 75% majority on their side. A revote is then held and usually a majority is determined. If no majority is determined still, then the piece will go back into the maybe pile to be discussed at another time. The final part is if there are too many pieces in the "yes" pile, then we'll have to raise the majority votes required to be submitted. Next would be 80% and so on until we get down to the number of submissions to be published in the magazine.

Now the only reason I posted that last bit is so that anyone submitting pieces can see that there is a rather rigorous process to determine whether your piece will be included in the magazine or not. It's not just one or two people who decide whether your piece is good or not. It's also not a bunch of students judging on how the piece's content made them feel.