No man is an island entire of itself; every man
is a piece of the continent, a part of the main…
— John Donne
Welcome to the Summer 2011 edition of SHARK REEF, where you’ll visit a wedding party in the Andes; join a group of elderly women in a communal bath in Japan; or watch as a nurse midwife deftly knits Mexico to Seattle and drops more than a few stitches in the process. Consider Hiking Naked. What happens will surprise you. And speaking of surprises, if you yearn for a contemporary story in the style of O. Henry, Wolf is a good bet. If a combination of shoes, attitude and lyricism intrigues, try Roadkill or These Shoes.
All this and more is in store for you in this first issue of the second decade of our online literary magazine. Launched in June, 2001, by writers in the Pacific Northwest, SHARK REEF originally was envisaged as a venue for local writers and artists. We didn’t intend to attract a geographically-diverse readership, but that’s what happened. Last year, with a new publisher and editorial board, we responded to that reality and invited writers and artists, regardless of where they live, to submit.
We are elated with the response, not only from writers across the United States, but from five other nations as well. Selecting just a few from the number and fine quality of much of the work was a challenging and daunting task but one we welcomed wholeheartedly. To insure submissions received the close attention they deserve, we invited additional writers to act as guest editors.
For their generous collaboration on this issue, we thank poetry co-editors, John Sangster and Elizabeth Landrum, both of whom have been published in earlier issues of SHARK REEF; Ann Norman, prose co-editor; and Judith Connor, new art editor. (See Connor’s visual artwork in this issue.)
So while the content and expanded range of SHARK REEF reflects the shifting realities of the seemingly unlimited information age we live in today, our online journal continues to retain its original purpose — to offer an opportunity to publish to serious writers who are committed to producing original writing of high quality. With great delight, we invite you to enjoy and savor the writing in this issue. And we look forward with eagerness to your submissions for our winter issue – deadline September 30.
As always, we exhort you all to write on!