Tag Archives: publishing

Should one change one’s writing to enhance the chances of being published?

I recently read this article on Writers Relief, http://writersrelief.com/2010/03/18/poetry-turnoffs-styles-and-formatting-that-make-editors-cringe/. The piece makes a number of points concerning what editors of poetry magazines dislike, and suggests that those making submissions think carefully prior to submitting their work. Amongst the “turn offs” mentioned in the article, is that of rhyming poetry, with the view being expressed that editors do not, in general publish rhyming poetry. Interestingly almost all of the comments following on from the article are strongly in favour of rhyming poetry.

As a poet who does (for most of the time) write in rhyme, I am both saddened and heartened by the article. Or, rather I am saddened by the fact that many editors shy away from rhyming poetry, but heartened by the large number of those who love (and write) in rhyme. Of course one should not shoot the messenger. The authors of the article are only passing on their advice to those who wish to submit to poetry magazines and, of course are not responsible for the editorial likes and dislikes of particular journals. Nonetheless I have an aversion to writing simply to be accepted for publication. For me poetry has to be honest, and composing verse simply to please others is not being true to oneself.

I should, perhaps qualify the above statement. I do, of course hope that my work will give pleasure to my readers. I will, however not write in a manner alien to me simply to gain popularity and/or publication. This is easy for me to say as I have a fulltime job (my writing is not my primary source of income, and I do appreciate that not everyone has the luxury of simply producing work which is entirely to their own liking, for we all have bills to pay etc). But, for me rhyming poetry is my main mode of communication and I will not change my preference in order to enhance my chances of being published.

As always I would be interested in the views of you, my readers.

Kevin

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The Alternative Acknowledgements (humour)

(The below is written firmly with my tongue in my cheek. Well maybe …)!

I would like to thank the following for their assistance in completing this book:

My editor, for taking my meagre gains from my literary eforts. (any remaining errors are, needless to say entirely his responsibility, and nothing to do with me squire!).

My partner, Miss Slapdash for her terrible cooking which, being wholly inedible drove me back to my study thereby encouraging me to write.

My publican, Mr Dodgy Geezer for serving what he calls beer, and the various ner-do-wells who frequent the Last Chance Saloon. The activities and conversations of these good people has provided me with literary material for many a year to come.

Finally I would like to extend a special thanks to my lawyer, Mrs Sue ‘Em before they Sue You, for her tireless eforts in fending off the many and various lawsuits which come my way. Her cheque is in the post, honest it is …!

Signed, an author, somewhere

Free Verse: The Poetry Book Fair (Sunday 23 September 2018)

On Sunday 23 September, the Poetry Book Fair takes place in London.

Publishers of free verse will be present as will the Poetry Society.

For details please visit, http://www.poetrybookfair.com/

Grime Music Star Stormzy To Help Young Writers Get Published

The Grime music star, Stormzy, has launched his own publishing brand, Murky Books, in collaboration with Penguin.

The aim of Murky Books is to help young writers to get published in a variety of genres, fiction, sci-fi and poetry.

To find out more please visit this link, https://news.sky.com/story/stormzy-to-help-young-writers-become-published-authors-with-penguin-11427689

Advice from poet Wendy Cope on poetry writing

A Guardian article in which poet Wendy Cope offers some excellent advice on writing poetry, https://www.theguardian.com/books/2008/sep/21/poetry.writing.wendycope.

Wendy stresses the importance of the poet being well read (in the sense of having read a wide variety of poetry, in different styles, by a diversity of poets). She also says that poets should practice writing all variaties of poetry in order to hone their craft. For example a poet who feels most comfortable using free verse, should also practice writing in rhyme.

I shook my head when I read of the man who presented Cope with a copy of his own poetry and stated that he didn’t read other poets as he didn’t wish to be influenced by them. What can one say to such a person? …

Words Caper

Words caper
On virtual paper,
As my thoughts one another chase,
Only to be lost in cyberspace.
‘Else my words on pages
Moulder for ages.

But it is not the case
That cyberspace
Does forget,
And dusty tomes, may be read yet.

The Role Of The Literary Agent

This week “The Bottom Line”, on BBC Radio 4 examines the role of agents (literary and otherwise). The information on the BBC’s website reads as follows:

“This week the programme looks at the business of agents. What exactly do they do and are they adding value to their clients’ careers? Evan Davis discusses their role with three agents from the worlds of showbusiness, football and books. …”.

To listen to the programme please visit, http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b09b0wbl.