Friday, June 22, 2012

Announcing the Launch of an Online Companion: Tampa Review Online

The Founding Editors of TROn

top right (left to right): Shane Hinton, Gregg Wilhelm, Resa Alboher, Jose Carmona, Derry Smith, Cooper Levey-Baker, Kossiwa Logan, Connor R. Holmes

second row (left to right): Andi Tomassi, Catherine Duncan Moore, Bradley Woodrum, Perpetual Murray, Martin Fulmer, Andy Taylor, Kurt Stein

missing from photo: Brittany Connolly, Cheryl Isaac, Katherine Lockwood, Travis Kriger, Michael Hardcastle

Last January during the inaugural residency of the low-res MFA in Creative Writing Program at the University of Tampa, students began work to create an online partner for our long-standing literary journal, Tampa Review.  

In just a few months, they have designed the website, solicited submissions, and worked out the other logistics of running an online magazine. They set a goal to complete their editorial work within ten days from the start of their second residency and to get the first content online at the closing ceremony. And with a growing editorial staff of new students they took these challenges head-on as they worked together in committee to finalize the launch of the brand new site: Tampa Review Online, or as we’ve nicknamed it—TROn.

At the helm of this launch are co-editors Andy Taylor and Bradley Woodrum, a poet and a fiction writer, who have coordinated  the editorial contents while finessing the technical aspects of the website by developing an advanced custom WordPress template. 

What sets TROn apart from the print version of Tampa Review?

TROn Editors: We are able to offer a space for all digital artistic mediums. We publish different content, without the page limits of the printed journal. And whereas the Tampa Review publishes bi-annually, TROn endeavors to publish bi-monthly in much smaller batches. We believe the variety and timing are more in line with an internet audience.

What sets TROn apart from other online literary journals?

TROn Editors: Many online journals still adhere to a print schedule because they’ve come out of the print world. We were born into the online world, and therefore we are not locked into a rigid publishing schedule. Also, as a new publication, we have the openness of an organization that has not established a predominant voice. We aim to accept artists of all aesthetic values and levels of notoriety.

What were some of the obstacles of design, launch, & overall process?

TROn Editors
: Given our ambitious launch date, we had six months to design and build a website, define our online identity, and solicit and process submissions. We can’t speak highly enough of our editors. We had a difficult time coordinating the project while we were spread out across the US. It took many late-night emails and much group discussion, but we made it.

When does TROn launch officially?

TROn Editors: Right now!

We've chosen six really great pieces:
The Online Magazine as Triggering Device by Dean Bartoli Smith
Curing by Sean Patrick Hill
And the Ruin Was Great by Ric Hoeben
Attachment by Angela Masterson Jones
Death to America by Robert Clark Young
An Excerpt from The Cartel by Taylor Branch

Are submissions currently open? And what is the ongoing reading period?

TROn Editors: Submissions are currently open, and we have a rolling reading period. That means that we are constantly accepting submissions to keep TROn fresh and new for our readers.

What has been the most educational element or takeaway of being part of the founding editorial team of TROn?

TROn Editors: The process of launching a publication from scratch has brought all of our editors close together, and perhaps the greatest learning experience for all of us has been how to work in a professional, virtual environment. Also, as writers it was educational to view the publishing world from the other side of the coin, where we were accepting submissions instead of sending them.

What should writers expect to see this summer from TROn?

TROn Editors:
Fresh content, more great blog posts, audio selections, and new and interesting voices.


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