April 26, 2005

Publishable George: How does one go about getting poetry published in this day and age?

Specifically, I'd like to use the internet to find more or less legitimate venues (obviously, I'm not talking Atlantic Monthly here) that preferably produce some sort of physical booklet. I'd love to hear anymonkey's advice and/or experiences (positive and negative) along these lines.

  • i'll bet bees has a reply that will appear in rhyming form any minute now...
  • I like this place, and here too. Outside of that I'll wait for the poet lariat's response.
  • I'd go with Lulu.com or Cafepress.com. You're not going to make money, but PODding will mean that you don't cost anyone except your customer any money, either.
  • According to Neil Gaiman, it's pretty easy getting poetry published, but almost impossible to make serious money from it. You'll likely have local poetry magazines that you might persue, and of course, the Writer's Market is a fine resource for finding publishers.
  • Second the 'spider on Writer's Market. They even have one specific for poets.
  • Austin has effing press - a real, live small time publisher who publishes regular issues and small press books of poets and writers. Really good stuff, and oddly enough, in Austin, like nickdanger.
  • Local presses, local presses, local presses. And don't be surprised that most really interesting print/online poetry journals come and go quickly. One of my favorites was Recursive Angel, and to my knowledge they haven't published in a couple years, and one which I've had a couple poems published in, Gravity (by a small press called Newton's Baby) hasn't published in a while either. Also, if you're willing to go the lower-brow but wider-market approach of online publishing, go to poetrysuperhighway.com (which is run by Rick Lupert) and start there for networking. And, failing that, just slap it up on your own website, and watch as every few months some random person notices and likes it enough to email you (such as on my site (self-link), which itself hasn't been updated in a couple years, mainly because I've been working on music and short stories).
  • I love monkeyfilter.
  • Set your poems to music. Become a superstar. Or be named Jewel.
  • Nickdanger, not sure I understand what exactly what you're looking for. There's an annual publication called Poet's Market -- it's updated yearly, and the new copy for 2006 comes out around the end of July or early August. The front section of PM tells a poet what s/he needs to know about getting a poem onto a page and into a presentable form (i.e. that's not going to turn off most editors). The rest of PM talks about publishers and specific journals and gives you some ideas about the sort of work they;re curently looking for, and so on. A great many publications now have an online prescence, but snail-mailed submissions of work are also what many places look for still, too. PM is indispensible for a poet, whether beginnign or not. Learn what sort of rights are on the table when you submit. Second source of information is a magazine called Poets and Writers which is packed with information -- it has an online presence here. One month is usually focused on poetry/poets and another on prose/fiction. Useful, but not indispesible to the degree PM is. eventually you may want to subscribe to it -- ther paper version has lots of interesting ads for book competitions and anthologies wanting this or that sort of poetry. Start meeting other poets and writers, and if possible join a poets' group if you haven't already found one you might be able to get one started. It's really useful to garner knowledge of markets and ideas about which publications would like like your kind of poetry. What's being published in the way of poetry in Hawaii? Check libraries, local bookstores, college and university campuses for bulletin boards. Look for literary magaziones and readings and visiting poets in your area. Read poetry. Listen to poets reading their poetry online. Read magazines and journals which publish poetry -- try to figure out which ones seem to print poems you lkike and which don't. Write poetry whenever you have time. Try to make time for it daily even if it's only a couplet or a phrase a day. Persist. Carry a notebook and pen at all times -- or the else will come and you may forget them as other events pile up. Expect to be told no a lot at first. Expect to like what you write at first and then loathe it after a litte time passes -- this is a common poetic reaction. You are not mad -- kost feel this way. Some poets swear by poetry workshops, and some at 'em -- they vary a lot, but most of it depends on the concentration and focus you're able to bring to it, I think. Get put on poetry-centred mailing lists. Nick, please feel free to e-mail me any time with questions or whatever. Sorry if this isn't what you were looking for. I'm starving right now and don't mnake much sense on an empty stomach. Remember to eat -- I am bad at this.
  • I don't know any of the details that were involved but my ex-roommate started his own publishing company for his poetry.
  • Welcome (and good!) advice, bees. Thank you. More specifically though, I was wondering about web-resources. There are a million hits for poetic publishing, but I'm willing to bet more than half are scams. Has anyone had an experience submitting to a journal or contest, or what-have-you, that you found via a poetry web site?
  • Stop it, you make me start writing again!
  • How about pooling our writing over in Wiki? We could have an electronic version first :) My semester ends in about four weeks, and after that it'll just be me and my dissertation (and my scary supervisor, but that's another story). So I was thinking about collecting and collating Bees' works, and probably do a preliminary draft in PDF or Word or something, and hand it over to some other monkey with more experience in graphics and typesetting than I do. We could run a parallel Mofi Collected Poetry alongside that?
  • I fed bees yesterday, isn't it someone else's turn today? c'mon monkeys, take care of the bee! In the meantime I've got strawberries and blackberries today.
  • Expect to like what you write at first and then loathe it after a litte time passes -- this is a common poetic reaction. Bees, that's exactly how I feel about everything I've ever written ever. I guess i feel better that it's a known . . umm . . condition. yes patita, yes - feed the bee. (strawberries and blackberries sound great!)
  • National Poetry Month Raises Awareness Of Poetry Prevention NEW YORK—This month marks the 10th National Poetry Month, a campaign created in 1996 to raise public awareness of the growing problem of poetry. "We must stop this scourge before more lives are exposed to poetry," said Dr. John Nieman of the American Poetry Prevention Society at a Monday fundraising luncheon. "It doesn't just affect women. Young people, particularly morose high-school and college students, are very susceptible to this terrible affliction. It is imperative that we eradicate poetry now, before more rainy afternoons are lost to it." Nieman said some early signs of poetry infection include increased self-absorption and tea consumption. heh. this week's Onion.
  • Alnedra, sorry, but I refuse to consent to having my work put into the wiki. A document, yes. Hard copy, like a book, yes. But not something which can be added-to-or-subtracted-from at will ten minutes or ten days or ten years from now. Perfectly willing to hear by e-mail why you think this is a good idea, but I have many reasons for objecting to it.
  • Yes, I can understand that bees. Participating in the bashi thread has certainly given me a bit more enthusiasm about writing again, and getting my webpage and poetry written previously back up again.
  • But not something which can be added-to-or-subtracted-from at will ten minutes or ten days or ten years from now. Ah. Sorry, bees, I didn't quite consider that. I originally thought of using Wiki as a project space purely for collecting the poems and doing spelling corrections and all that. But you're right, putting the poems on Wiki might lead to unpleasant consequences if we get some jokers. Oh well, back to Plan A then :)
  • Offer to help on the Bees Meisterwerk still very much open - just let me know if there's anything I can do.
  • those aren't misspellings - they're interpretations.
  • And I'm really, really sorry for derailing this thread, Nickdanger.
  • I can understand, I think, Alnedra, why a wiki might be a useful tool for collating and some aspects of editing, but I think the end result might come to resemble the work of a committee more than that of a poet lariat, alas. Sorry not to have gotten back to you sooner, but I am swamped with mountains of paperwork this month, and am having to dash things off at odd moments. Whoa, not dash -- more of a plodder right now.
  • It's okay, that onion article made me stop writing anyway.
  • *tugs at collar, wipes brow with hankie*