For the past three and a half years, The Offing has been home to exciting, boundary-pushing work by many new and emerging artists, poets, and writers. As an online literary magazine, The Offing functions as a platform to amplify, promote, and support those voices often missing from mainstream spaces. Every editor, reader, and board member among our staff of volunteers is dedicated to this mission. For many of us, it’s about celebrating and creating our own communities.
I’m grateful to then-Enumerate Editor Aricka Foreman for not only hiring me as an editorial assistant three years ago, but also opening a door for me, a writer of color without an MFA. The Offing was the first place to welcome me to a literary community. I hope it doesn’t sound too hyperbolic when I say that the opportunity changed my life in more ways than I could begin to list here.
In 2016, our new editor-in-chief Chanda Prescod-Weinstein took on the daunting task of formalizing The Offing’s status as an independent 501(c)(3). It was Chanda who reasserted our commitment to publishing marginalized writers, who pushed us to make this an active priority, and who challenged us to always strive to operate more inclusively. It was also Chanda who offered me the position of Executive Editor when I expressed a desire to do more to help. I learned a great deal from her in those years that we spent working closely together. And I felt truly honored and humbled when she suggested that I take the reins as she steps back from The Offing’s day-to-day operations. Thanks to Chanda’s efforts, we have a solid foundation on which to continue building our vision for The Offing.
Accepting the role of Editor in Chief was not something I approached lightly. But ultimately, I feel it’s one very real way I can give back to a community that has been there for me. The decision was made easier once Associate Poetry Editor Luther Hughes, who has been with The Offing since its founding year, agreed to become Executive Editor. Joining him is Ashaki M. Jackson, who has championed women and nonbinary writers through her endeavors at VIDA and Women Who Submit. Luther and Ashaki are also beautiful poets and writers in their own right. So I’m thrilled that we will be embarking together as team to begin this new chapter of The Offing.
Some other announcements: The Micro department, which Mahogany L. Browne brilliantly helmed, lives on in the capable hands of Tariq Luthun, an award-winning poet and community organizer. My longtime and dear colleague Amanda K Horn takes over for me as Editor of Enumerate. Ariel Jones joins our production team alongside Managing Editor Tate Esparaggo. Crisosto Apache has been promoted to Associate Poetry Editor, and Noah Fields to Assistant Poetry Editor.
On behalf on of the new editorial leadership and staff, I want to reaffirm our promise to holding space for writers whose identities and stories traditionally have been erased or ignored. We remain dedicated to opening doors for others in the same way that they have been opened for us. Ensuring access, we successfully raised enough funds to do away with submission fees in 2018. We aim to be able to do the same for 2019. You can help us. Thank you for reading and supporting The Offing.
Here’s to the work!