Curses—it looks like I’ve spent most of my blog writing/coffee drinking time reading, trying to catch up on recent conversations on the BlazeVOX controversy. Much good discussion continues. A few quick questions have sprung to mind:
1) What is the role or job of an editor/publisher? Are an editor and publisher the same thing? Are a “role” and a “job” the same thing? What are the images of the small press editor/publisher being constructed in this debate? How do those images map to actual experience?
2) And parallel to that, was is the role or job of a writer in the small press community? What images of the writer and her/his role are being constructed? How do those images correspond with our lived experience?
3) What specific publishing practices are being marked as illegitimate? What practices are being marked as ones to emulate? How do presses identify which practices are best for them?
4) What does the general call for transparency in publishing practices tell us about the how we view or exist in our community? Does a move toward transparency signal a shift in the development of the community’s professional identity?
5) Am I any good at what I do? How can I do it better? What are my priorities as a publisher? How do my priorities match up with what other members of the small press community believe they should be? Should I care?
6) What makes a small press successful? What makes a small press legitimate?
7) Is there something productive, and I mean that in the sense of an actual product (I always return to making), that can come from this?