Pg. 11 — Origin Story
Finally, it is a real honor to feature the amazing work of prize-winning artist Ronan Cahill in this issue! We ask for a very carefully defined style of art to complement the poetry, and having received no submissions that met our requirements, we thought that we would have to do without. However, somewhere in West Lothian, Ronan had decided to take a look through some old sketchbooks of his work. Several in particular called to him. He displayed them online and I happened upon them very shortly thereafter. I knew instantly that it was exactly the right art for this journal. The work called to me. Wonderful stuff. A bit later, Ronan agreed to send along another work of art that had caught my eye for this journal. It is representative of his newer work. A beautiful and enthralling piece. Each point in the arc leading us to this splendid outcome.
We had run into a similar challenge with acquiring artwork for The Starlight SciFaiku Review (although we did manage to publish work from two artists and also included a curated selection of classic science fiction art from the public domain). We don’t plan on changing our very specific requirements for journal art, so finding ways to get in front of enough artists such that the art we need gets in front of you will continue to be a process, but we are making some inroads in this regard.
Speaking of interesting connections, Ronan’s artwork on the back cover presents images that look remarkably similar to the aliens and their spacecraft in Apple TV’s show Invasion, but here’s the kicker, his work was done long before that TV show aired. In fact, I had already received Ronan’s artwork before the first episode was available for viewing!
While each of Ronan’s pieces can be viewed independently on their respective pages, some have been paired with poems for which they are particularly complimentary. So, enjoy the utterly intriguing and immersive art of Ronan Cahill throughout this issue.
You will notice that very conscious stylistic decisions were made in putting this journal together, some of which reflect platform-driven formatting parameters and aesthetic preferences in displaying poetry in an online medium, some the diversity of ever-evolving aesthetic and practical norms, while some are purely editor-driven. If we can’t bend and break the rules a bit in the creative arts then fuhgeddaboudit! Incidentally, I am stylistically influenced by the literary journal Prune Juice, circa 2017, with Editor Steve Hodge. Finally, Elmore Leonard said about exclamation marks that “You are allowed no more than two or three per 100,000 words of prose.” I’ve exceeded that number significantly in my introduction but it just could not be helped!