Notes from the Editors

David Booth - The New Me

Dear Reader:

Welcome to the premiere issue of Switchback, the first online literary journal of the University of San Francisco's MFA in Writing program. We hope you enjoy this first issue and thank you for your interest. Switchback would not be possible without you.

Our theme for this issue, Tradition vs. Experimentation, is evident in the work we are publishing. It is also reflected in the difficult but rewarding process of creating an online journal. As an infant magazine, we are in the midst of creative play, taking on this relatively new form of publishing to craft our statement. We're experimenting with the number and length of pieces, the architecture, rhythm, flow and sound, visual presentation, content variety, and order—many of the areas of craft one considers when creating a single piece of writing. Whether you label this end product as being more experimental than traditional, or vice versa, the reality is that it has been a marriage of both worlds.

We had lengthy discussions about the name for the journal. Switchback won out because it represents our philosophy of fostering ongoing discourse. At USF, the conversations in MFA in Writing classes spark exchanges on craft and the state of literature, and are critical to the development of our work. A switchback zigzags on a path that leads to a higher place. Ideally, our journal is not just about moving back and forth between two ideas. It is a journey that moves us to greater understanding, a journey that inspires us to write, and to explore the ideas that fuel our writing.

Each issue of Switchback will include writing on a theme, the beginning of a conversation within our literary communities. We invite you to join the conversation. You will notice a comments link on the masthead. We await your thoughts on the theme of "Tradition vs. Experimentation," as well as ideas raised by the work we have published. We are also interested in your response to the look of the magazine, its functionality, and overall texture. And finally, we are eager for new topics for future conversations.

Be candid, be kind, be constructive, be passionate, and be part of the team that evolves this magazine into a real conversation.

What are your burning thoughts? What ideas do you want to explore?


The Switchback Editorial Staff

(Comments page to view reader feedback)