|Editorial Issue #38|
Issue #38 (October 1984)
First, please note that my correct address is North San Jose, CA 95112. The word "North" was inadvertently omitted last month.
Second, let me emphasize that contributions to The Ecphorizer are actively solicited. I won't fib to you: the summer doldrums have all but depleted the input file. The weather is chilling and snows have begun to fall in the northern tier, so pack away the swim suits and barbecue equipment, and break out the typewriters and word processors.
Third then, it seems only fair for a new editor to offer a few guidelines to potential contributors. While The Ecphorizer was originally posited as a "magazine of ideas," it seems to have had difficulty in attracting them in great numbers (and from Mensans, yet?). The Ecphorizer has nonetheless achieved some status as a "little magazine," and I see no reason why it shouldn't continue as such--a proving ground for writers who may not be quite ready for the slicks. (Though I do not, of course, mean for this definition to be a deterrent to those professional writers and artists who contribute to The Ecphorizer.)
Along those lines, thoughtful essays, provocative research pieces, well-crafted short-short stories, and evocative poems are welcome.
I will look with small favor on humor items that are better suited for stand-up comics, and I take a rather traditional stance on poetry. A poem must have three elements: sound, sensuous appeal, and meaning. Poets, please be your own critics first. If, in all honesty, your work is no more than a prose sentence broken up into funny little lines with no punctuation or capital letters, or if it depends on creative orthography or its pattern on the page for its success, then consider going on to make a poem out of the thought. If you aspire to write poetry but don't understand these criteria, then read a lot of good poetry and books about poetry before you start. If you are of the opinion that poems are born, not made, or if your ditties muse over the me-ness of me and the you-ness of you or wail about the tear-stained pillow in your bereft bed, then tuck them away in the lilac-scented pages of your memory book. Or, better yet, burn them.
Fourth, part of the entertainment of producing The Ecphorizer is that it is largely done electromagnetically by people who need excuses to use their expensive home computing equipment. If you do your writing on a computer, you are invited to tender your submissions either by telephone or on diskette. I can take material over the phone directly or from an intermediate source (if you tell me how to get at it), or I can pick up virtually any 5-1/4" CP/M (except Apple's), MS-DOS, or PC-DOS format, as well as TRSDOS and LDOS. Arrangements can be made for Apple diskettes. If you do mail me a diskette, the text files must be ASCII coded, and please, please, don't forget to indicate what format it is.
Dick has been quite active in San Francisco Regional Mensa as well as the national organization. He is a writer and technologist who lives with his wife, Meredy Mullen Amyx, in San Jose. Popular convention is that when referring to the Family Amyx, they are known collectively as The Amyses.