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They're at it again (Read 423 times)
Gary A. Markette
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They're at it again
Apr 24th, 2012, 1:34am
 
Just received an email from something called "The World Poetry Movement." In it was an invitation to submit a poem and compete for $1000 prize. Oh my friends yes I have fallen for this in the past. I've sent my verse to these "people" and they have responded. They praised my poetry, told me I was a semi-finalist, and asked permission to publish my work in their book. They made it clear I was under no obligation to buy the book but, if I wanted to see my work in print, they were offering to sell me a copy (or copies) for the bargain price of $50.

To my embarrasment, I actually bought a copy.

I might plead youth and ignorance, but I was old enough to know better. I have no excuse. I was blinded by the prospect of seeing my deathless verse in print. To be fair, the poem actually was in the book--a badly bound, cheaply produced tome--along with hundreds of other poorly typeset doggerel. Far from being proud, I was ashamed. That shame lingers still, years later.

This posting is to warn AR members against this sort of thing. It's not really a scam because the "people" who do it don't really promise anything. I'm sure that they actually will pay some poor shmoe the $1000 they promise. Why not? They'll clear lots more than that from the dreck they'll sell to poet wannabes. It's a cash cow and they're milking it again.

So watch your email. You'll probably be getting something like this soon. If you decide to enter the contest, well, that's your option. Realize, though, that you're really just supporting a jumped up vanity press. You'd be better off simply posting your poems online in a blog or at a poetry site. (Unfortunately, some of them do the same sort of thing. Seems that poets tend to be more naive than us hard core sci-fi writers.)
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monsoonster
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Re: They're at it again
Reply #1 - Apr 24th, 2012, 9:09pm
 
My significant other is a poet. Excellent one. That said, this is more an ongoing thing than people realize. You're right; they aren't doing anything wrong because, hey, you pay to play; almost like a lottery or publisher's clearinghouse. But to someone who is new at the writing biz, who has had friends and family tell them, "Hey. You're really good at this. You can probably make alot of money from this"; said by people who, no doubt, read very little, or not at all, never mind reading poetry. The line that gets people all the time is, "get published" means (in their hopeful hearts) "I'll make enough money at this I won't have to work ever again."

There are more poetry chapbooks and epics out being published than people realize, BUT it's usually POD or its like. And not many get sold because the only people who buy and read poetry anymore are poets (it's funny how many people these days don't understand metaphor anymore; nowadays, a phrase I'd heard many times over since a youth in a poor rural town -- spread the wealth -- is now considered a communist/terrorist indicator instead of a sign of intelligence). Unfortunately, online ezines are going the same way; read only by its own writers.
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