The Weather

Welcome Back

Dear Reader,

When Tom said he wanted to do an entire site redesign, I said, yes, let’s do it, sounds good. When he said he wanted the Weather to figure more prominently on our front page, I, as Weather editor, enthusiastically threw my support behind the move. When we opened the column to submissions and landed our name in Duotrope, I peeled the plastic ring off a container of Trader Joe’s Triple Ginger Snaps I’d been saving for just such a celebration. We were entering a new iteration. But now the day has arrived, dear Reader, and I’ve got to admit that I still have no idea what the Weather exactly is.

Tom, in a recent letter, spoke at length about the Weather. He said that the column started as a sort of joke, because in sunny Los Angeles, where he and several other Trop writers reside, the weather never changes, and thus presents a unique challenge to expository creative writing. That’s fine, Tom. But over my many years of literary devotion and ceaseless multicultural immersion and thought, I’ve come to recognize that we live in a little country called the U S of A. And nowhere here is ever the same as anywhere.

Love it or leave it.

And so even though I don’t know what this column’s deal is, exactly, I love that about it. It can be funny. Surreal. Experimental. Sentimental. Over the past eight months, it’s included a little of everything, really—poems, satire, philosophy, essays. I’m lucky to edit such fine writing from such smart and gutsy new writers. You number too many to mention here in name, but thank you all for making this column so rad and so diverse. Many of your posts have blown me away. And some totally suck. You might say then that this column is a literary manifestation of the gambler’s fallacy, that one day is no guarantee of what’s to come with the next. It never settles, and it never ceases. It’s simply the Weather, dear Reader, and I’m afraid that at this point neither you nor I can do much about it. It’s out of our hands.

Well, that’s actually not true at all. For one, I’m the editor, and I more or less control what runs in this space. Also, because we’ve just opened the column up for public, unsolicited submissions, it’s sort of in your hands, too. If you don’t like the Weather, dear Reader, you now have the power to change it. It’s easy. Just write something totally awesome under 1,500 words and send it to It doesn’t have to be about the actual weather, though it may be. It doesn’t have to have anything to do with other Weather posts, though again, it may, should you choose to respond to someone. I’d like this conversation to be as wide and as pied and as thoughtful and as energetically weird as all of you. We welcome your work, and we welcome you to the new Trop. Thanks for reading.

Write back.

Roger Sollenberger, Deputy Editor

Roger is a composition teacher at Georgia College in Milledgeville, Georgia. He's working on his first novel, and would like to tell you all about it.