When I started Arsenika in December 2016, I had no idea what to expect. I’d never edited a magazine before. All I knew was that I wanted to find work that called out to me, and that I’d recognize that work when I saw it. I trusted my sense of aesthetics to highlight pieces that other editors may have missed or misunderstood—work with queer elements, work steeped in non-White cultures, work that experiments with form and narrative.
I’m honored and humbled by how many submissions I’ve received over the years. Finding work among those submissions that I wanted to publish filled me with delight—there’s nothing quite like the joy of reading a submission that resonates with me and makes me go, “Yes!”
Altogether, Arsenika published 11 original pieces of flash fiction and 33 original poems. Although we’ve published far less than other venues, I’m proud to say that Arsenika nonetheless has had a global range of authors, including authors from or residing in the USA, the UK, Poland, Australia, Singapore, Hong Kong, Greece, Nigeria, China, Canada, Trinidad and Tobago, Botswana, Vietnam, and New Zealand. A significant number of authors also identify as queer, and a few are public about being disabled.
I sought to uplift marginalized voices with this publication, and I am closing it now with the satisfaction of knowing that I have achieved that goal. It’s been a fulfilling five years. I hope speculative fiction continues to grow and become more inclusive. Thank you for coming along on this journey with me.