In her Editor's Notes to Issue 13 of Saranac Review, Elizabeth Cohen begins by quoting Emily Dickinson: "If I read a book [and] it makes my whole body so cold no fire can ever warm me, I know that is poetry. If I feel physically as if the top of my head were taken off, I know that is poetry."
Cohen writes, "We are sometimes asked at Saranac Review how we select the work we publish, and I think Dickinson's words are applicable. Of course we seek work that has strong voice, craft and originality, but in the end, it is the visceral response that probably most informs our choices. We choose poetry, fiction, creative non-fiction and plays that make us feel and evoke in us a response that physically affects us, while simultaneously reminding us why we read in the first place. If you could read our notes to one another on Submittable, you would see a lot of this: 'Made me tingle,' 'heart stopping,' 'took my breath away.'"
With such discerning criteria, writers have got to meet that bar, providing readers much to look forward to in each issue of Saranac Review.