Monday, 2 April 2018

Poetry



At what point can you refer to yourself as a writer? For me it is when you write because you want to, because you need to, because the urge to do so can’t be contained any longer. Competition success, having an agent, being published, none of these matter. If you write then you are by definition a writer. Not necessarily a good writer, probably not a famous one, almost certainly not a wealthy one, but a writer all the same.

I don’t think of myself as a poet although I have had a few frivolous pieces published in magazines. Slightly more serious efforts have appeared in Mslexia’s subscribers’ only newsletter and in an anthology in support of the Koestler Trust charity. 


Mslexia once called me a poet when they used four lines of my doggerel in their magazine. Success indeed - although they didn’t pay me for that one!

I ought to write more poetry, if only for my own benefit. Emotionally they can be cathartic and healing, and even a bit of fun. And, if any are worthy, maybe I could submit them to competitions or magazines. 

April is a good month to start by signing up to the NaPoWriMo Challenge.

I never think of poetry as a money-spinner - in total I’ve earned only £140 and a tea caddy for my humble offerings. However (and with thanks to Patsy Collins for the lead) a recent poetry competition offering a top prize of £2,000 may force me to rethink the financial benefits.

But then, writing is its own reward. Isn’t it?

8 comments:

  1. It's a struggle to call yourself a writer especially when people expect you to have a book published. For a while I did tell people I was a writer but do so less these days. But I will always write.

    I am taking part in NaNoWriMo and have signed up to the prompts on The Poetry School website so that's where I will post my efforts. I may post a few on my blog. Why not join me?

    Good post. Keep up the good work.

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    1. Thanks, Heather. I enjoy your poetry so I shall be watching out for your postings this month. I hadn’t intended to take up the NaPoWriMo Challenge, but am thinking now of doing so. Thank you for the encouragement.

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  2. I began calling myself a writer a few years ago, after reading a book by Julia Cameron who said same as you did. If I'm sitting writing, then I'm writing. Since then I've had more work published and fulfilled my writing ambition and become a Pocket Novelist for My Weekly. They say we are what we think we are, so all we have to do is believe in ourselves. I too enjoy poetry.

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    1. Well done on fulfilling your Pocket Novel ambition, Susan. The power of positive thinking can only get you so far, of course. I’ve read your Redington stories which prove you have the talent too.

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  3. It takes time but one day someone asked me what I did and I automatically said I was a writer.

    Earning anything from poetry is good in the current climate, so keep doing it.x

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    1. Thanks for commenting, Carol. You are indeed a writer, and a good one at that.

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  4. Yes, writing is it's own reward – but that doesn't mean we shouldn't enjoy other benefits too if we can get hold of them.

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    1. So very true, Patsy. Your site is a welcome source of information revealing where such benefits may be found. Thank you for keeping us up to date.

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