Editorial – News and Stuff

Forward Prizes 2017

We recently exercised our right to submit three poems that have appeared in the magazine for the “Best Single Poem” category in the 2017 Forward Prizes. The nominated poems were:

So good luck to Kathleen, Nicky and Maurice with the judges, chaired this year by Andrew Marr.


I have avoided mentioning myself on the website because it’s about the poems, not me. But a surprising number of submitters profess distress that they couldn’t find a name to address submissions to. I have also had a few addressed “Dear Algebra”, and several addressed “Dear Kim” – because I quote Kim Addonizio on the submissions page. Well, I am not a world renowned New York poet of Italian descent, and Kim has not moved to Yorkshire to set up an online poetry magazine. To prevent confusion I have bowed to pressure and added an “Editors” page here. This coincides with the addition of Hannah Stone to the editorial team. She will be helping out with guest editor liaison and also allows for the introduction of some anonymity in the poem selection process. Hannah will be reading and commenting on shortlisted poems “blind”, without knowledge of their authors, which was not possible while I was doing everything myself.

The downside is that AoO can no longer publish any of Hannah’s work, as we consider editors self-publishing work in their own magazines to be verboten.

Submission volumes

…have been increasing steadily, and Hannah’s addition to the team is partly to deal with increasing workloads. This is great, and I hope it continues to rise. From April onwards we will be cutting the number of poems published each month down to around twenty, which we feel will be about the right balance going forward.

The commitment to publishing a wide variety of poems, simply those which we consider to be the best of those submitted – not discriminating positively or negatively in terms of poets’ nationality, religion, gender, sexuality, themes, reputation or publishing history – remains unchanged.

It’s only about the poems, and we don’t worry about who writes them.

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