November 21, 2018
Hello to everyone who is crazy enough to be reading this.
This is my first blog. The little voice in my head is telling me that it should also be my last blog.
But friends and readers of my poetry (hopefully this is an overlapping population) have been telling me for years that I should write a blog. So, I guess I’ll try.
I’ll try on the condition that the blog is not about me or my life. Neither is that interesting.
Instead, I will write a blog about the one thing I might know, poetry. Of course, this begs the question: Who cares about poetry?
When I did some research on this question, I admit to being shocked. According to Statista which keeps stats on this sort of stuff, in 2013, the last year for which they have numbers, 10,156 poetry and drama books were commercially printed (they don’t split the category). If that seems high, consider that in 2008, 13,474 such books were printed!
But as the TV commercial says: “Wait, there’s more.” Duotrope which keeps tracks of current magazine markets for poetry and literary fiction found 1,544 magazines that prints more than one poem per issue.
Now (and I don’t have exact numbers for this) let’s assume that a given literary magazine appears either in print or online two times per year (usually they appear more frequently than that) and that each issue prints ten poems (a conservative number). That’s 30,880 published poems per year. And that’s not counting submitted poems that were rejected. Given low magazine acceptance rates I bet there’s almost one-million poems submitted for publication per year!
And how about all the people who write poetry but never submit for publication? That must bring the total to tens of millions of poems written every year!
My conclusion is that, in contradiction to popular beliefs, poetry is alive and well; people are writing and (hopefully) reading it. In other words, people are interested.
With those numbers in mind, I humbly hope I can write a blog that is informative and interesting for readers. We’ll talk about what makes a poem, what makes it good, readable and enjoyable. We will also discuss ways to come up with, write and revise the poems which you write.
Like everything in life, the operative word is hope.
As in hope to be in touch with you soon.