Tuesday, February 1, 2022

NilavroNIll Shoovro


Time To Confess

Our Poetry Archive will complete seven years with the upcoming March 2022 issue. With this February number, we have published 83 monthly issues of OPA. Along with seven annual anthologies on different themes. During this journey of seven years, we gathered a lot of experience. We have published thousands of poems. We have introduced hundreds of poets. So, OPA has become widely popular among poets and readers.  In this era of online presence, we can only say that the poet fraternity has welcomed our endeavor. Yet we cannot be over complacent. I think this is high time we should cross-examine our success. If we consider success depends on quantity, we can celebrate our success. Yes, we have achieved it. If we recognize success is an achievement, that depends on attaining quality, I have every doubt to believe in our success.

One can wonder why I’m saying this. Being an editor of a web journal, I know our weaknesses and strengths. And to produce quality work, one has to depend on others. In our case, we have to depend on the quality of the poetry written by contemporary poets especially, those with an online presence. We know not all poets around the world have an online presence. We know most of the renowned poets of our time never depend on online publications, especially online web journals. So, we don’t have any access to their creative excellence. Readers have to venture through the print editions of their books. In case any reader wants to read their poetry. So being a web journal publisher we don’t have access to their poetry as well. We can only depend on the poets with an online presence. And on those who want to publish their creativity through online web journals such as OPA. I do hope, readers will understand our limitations. With limited capacity, one cannot attain any success that depends on qualitative excellence.

We have to acknowledge the fact that anyone with an online presence and a dream to be a poet, can venture through this medium of the internet and social media. The Internet has enabled all to publish anything online. A person with a hobby of writing poems is not outside of this new era of self-publishing. Yes, this dream has made most of us poets and writers for not long. Of course, this new era has achieved quantity. But quality assurance has been compromised. Obviously, for any web journal, it is very difficult to attain and maintain qualitative literary excellence with these conditions. And OPA is no exception. Yes, this inherent weakness of online publishing remains with us from the very beginning of our journey. Although consciously we keep on trying to manage and sail through our limited capacity if not overcome our weakness. 

Every month we have to reject, a lot of submissions to maintain the quality of the journal. Yet, as an editor I cannot claim, we are not publishing a single poem without any literary brilliance. I know, we publish too many poems which nobody will read for a second time. I confess we are compromising with quality to maintain the quantity of the journal. It is the true story of our seven-year-long journey of online publishing. Again, this true story has a big twist. OPA publishes a lot of translated poems. Most of the poets of Europe submit their poems along with the translated versions into English. Few submit only the translated versions without the original versions. Nobody can claim that these translated versions of the original poems bear the same literary quality. Even the poets themselves do not know about the quality of the English translations as they do not know the language. I don’t know how many poets get the translations done by the online translator applications. The quality of these translator applications is too poor to bring back any literary brilliance of the original poetry. So, both the poets and editors have to compromise with the quality of the translations. Only the readers who can go through the original versions of the poems can get the real essence of the poetry written in different European languages. This is an area of weakness of OPA that we have to bear on. Otherwise, we cannot develop this platform of cultural exchange of various literary traditions and heritages. We can only ask our poets, to get the translations done by the experts of this field.

Yes, we would like to take this resolution that we would keep on asking our poets, those who write in languages other than English, to get the translations of their poems done only by the professional experts of the field. We are also asking those poets, who write primarily in English to submit qualitative poems of literary brilliance. With the advent of the eighth year of the online journey of OPA, we’ll look forward to uplifting the literary quality of our web journal. To go in that direction, we’ll have to decline a lot of poems of those poets also, who are the frequent participators of OPA. During the last seven years. We hope, all the poets associated with OPA will welcome these resolutions. We hope lot more poets will take OPA seriously as a literary journal of excellence. We hope our readers will also welcome these resolutions. And yes, to maintain the quality of the poems we may have to compromise with the quantity of the poems.

So, friends, with the upcoming April issue of OPA we would like to extend our promise to add more quality to our publications. It may bring down the quantity. But with enhanced quality, we hope OPA will become more popular than before. Again, this depends not only on us alone. It depends primarily on the poets, the translators, and the readers as well. If we all can give our best, we can attain a minimum benchmark of qualitative excellence. Let’s take it as the new year resolution of 2022. Let’s hope to rewrite the history of online literary ventures with qualitative measures.

NilavroNill Shoovro

From The Editorial Desk














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1 comment :

  1. Hearty Congratulations for successfully publishing OPA for seven years.It is a great achievement.I admire OPA for quality.My best wishes to esteemed Editor Nilavro Nill as well as all members of Editorial Board.