From SUCKER LITERARY MAGAZINE Founder Hannah Goodman
As an editor/publisher of a magazine, I’d like to be transparent about what I want. I’ve been on the other end for so long–still am as I try to get an agent for my YA short story collection and another new YA novel. I have no interest in being a mysterious entity to writers trying to find a place that will publish their work. I’d like you all to know exactly what we publish. That being said, you should submit anyway, even if you aren’t sure you fit our “need”–the only way to find out if you do fit us, is to submit.
So here it goes…
I want to publish literary YA fiction that is provocative and hopeful. Inspiring without preaching. I don’t care if there’s aliens or vampires or wolves…but if there is, they better make me laugh or cry. I want character and voice driven work that doesn’t rely on a heavy plot. That being said, I want to be entertained and feel engrossed in the action.
My list of favorite YA authors and novels probably can clue you into what I’m looking for in submissions to SUCKER. I’ve got the old classics like Catcher In The Rye and the modern classics like Perks of Being A Wallflower. I’m sort of haunted (in a good way) by the modern sci-fi classic Feed by M.T. Anderson. Yet, I also adore the-made-me-wish-I-were-a-poet, novel in verse, The Secret of Me and the modern-day Forever, Anatomy of a Boyfriend. Of course, because I was a teen in the late eighties and early nineties, I also adore old school stuff by Norma Klein and Norma Fox Mazer.
Of late, I seem to be addicted to the painfully funny, thanks to my mentor David Yoo and my work over the two and a half years at Solstice where I penned my own painfully funny short story collection BIG FAT BROKEN HEARTS…Read an excerpt here.
I just finished Will Grayson, Will Grayson, and along those lines, some other recent books include Swim The fly and Stop Me If You’ve Heard This One Before. Even on the adult side, although it’s a memoir, Bad Mother is a recent read that I couldn’t put down.
THE READING/WRITING EXPERIENCE
I read to connect, feel, relate–not so much to escape, which may be why I prefer realistic fiction to fantastical. (However, Feed is one of my favs because the fantastical didn’t distract from the characters in the story.) I read to understand my world and the greater world around me. I write for the same reasons–to understand my world and the wider world around me, to make sense of things (death, love, sex, relationships), to deconstruct and rebuild for a better understanding of this wide, beautiful, confusing world. When I write, I want to stir readers to feel emotions (sadness, happiness, anger, etc) but more, I want them to deeply connect with the material so that they feel what they felt as a teen, or if they are teens, they can say, “Yes, I identify…”