McSweeney's is a huge inspiration for what we're trying to do today, and I think founder Dave Eggers does a tremendous job in this piece summarizing exactly why we want to be publishers, in an age where everyone else is running away from publishing as fast as possible.
One doesn't really "publish" a screenplay. You spend months writing and rewriting, usually alone, and then you finally press send and let it electronically slide into the hands of friends, trusted advisers, agents, producers, executives, and so on. Pretty much the same, up to this point, as any other type of writing. The break becomes when, if your script has juice and you're incredibly lucky, someone decides to make it into a movie. At which point your screenplay is just a vehicle to get the movie made, and nobody ever really reads it again. Sure, within the industry it becomes a calling card to either get you more work, or, if it's terrible or the movie fails, make getting work that much more difficult. But outside of Hollywood, nobody has any idea what it says, aside from what they finally see on screen.
Anyways -- pressing "send" is terrifying. Up to that point, everything feels great. Confidence is running high. Then you press send and you instantly regret EVERY.SINGLE.WORD., and smash your computer against and through the drywall in hopes that the message and attachment won't escape via the goddamn digital throughway, because it if does it'll be ridiculed and we'll be shamed because OF COURSE it's terrible and the worst thing anyone's ever written and God, maybe they won't read it and/or we can steal their computer and make sure they'll never see it in the first place...
I say all this because publishing someone else's work -- like we did in Issue #1 -- is the opposite feeling. It's the most tremendous honor and rush to expose new writers to millions of potential readers, or even feature something new from someone more notable, who's trusting us to not fuck up their good name.
If we succeed in nothing else, I hope we break a few new voices who go on to do big things, and who manage to retain the voice that got them there in an otherwise vanilla publishing industry.
We can't wait to take a chance on you, so take a chance on us and send us a pitch for your best short story. If we love your work, we'll get it out there. We hope you like what we've published so far, and can't wait for Issue #2.