Published 23 March 2009 · Main Posts Response to Kris Hemensley Rjurik Davidson In the latest Overland, Kris Hemensley criticises the Overland editors’ decision to allow a response by poet John Kinsella to a review of two of his works by Elizabeth Campbell. Hemensley wonders why we have accorded special favours for John, when it is not our usual practice to publish responses to a review. We did not, he points out, invite Elizabeth to participate in a debate. She has, in Hemensley’s eyes, been ambushed. All in all, in Hemensley’s view, we’ve used both writers to create a little sensation on behalf of the magazine. We offer the following explanation: 1) In our opinion, the review was not your typical review. It was, in fact, extremely critical of the work of a poet who has many publications, and is a long-time correspondent of Overland. It was thus natural that we would have to let John know of the impending review, and offer him the chance to respond. 2) We decided to publish the review and response side by side, which we figured would allow our readers to assess both arguments. Before publication we notified Elizabeth that John was responding and that we would publish it in the same issue. We offered her the option of seeing it before the issue was published. This, we reasoned, would allow her the option of pulling the review if she felt ‘ambushed’. 3) We also offered Elizabeth the right of response. 4) In all of this, we were conscious that we wanted to make sure everyone was treated fairly, and that we were negotiating a difficult terrain. We wanted to publish the review, despite the fact that it was so critical, because we don’t want to discourage critical reviews. But we also felt that given its nature, John should probably have the right of response. It was a difficult situation to negotiate, but it seems to us that the two pieces work together well to bring to light some issues in Australian poetry. Rjurik Davidson Rjurik Davidson is a writer, editor and speaker. Rjurik’s novel, The Stars Askew was released in 2016. Rjurik is a former associate editor of Overland magazine. He can be found at rjurik.com and tweets as @rjurikdavidson. More by Rjurik Davidson › Overland is a not-for-profit magazine with a proud history of supporting writers, and publishing ideas and voices often excluded from other places. If you like this piece, or support Overland’s work in general, please subscribe or donate. Related articles & Essays First published in Overland Issue 228 8 September 202312 September 2023 · Main Posts Announcing the 2023 Judith Wright Poetry Prize ($9000) Editorial Team Established in 2007 and supported by the Malcolm Robertson Foundation, the Overland Judith Wright Poetry Prize for New and Emerging Poets seeks poetry by writers who have published no more than one collection of poems under their own name (that is writers who’ve had zero collections published, or one solo collection published). It remains one of the richest prizes for emerging poets, and is open to poets anywhere in the world. In 2023, the major prize is $6000, with a second prize of $2000 and a third prize of $1000. All three winners will be published in Overland. First published in Overland Issue 228 8 September 202315 September 2023 · Main Posts Announcing the 2023 Neilma Sidney Short Story Prize ($6500) Editorial Team Supported by the Malcolm Robertson Foundation, and named after the late Neilma Gantner, this prize seeks excellent short fiction of up to 3000 words themed around the notion of ‘travel’; imaginative, creative and literary interpretations are strongly encouraged. This competition is open to all writers, nationally and internationally, at any stage of their writing career.