Friday, August 20, 2010

Poetry Tips: Perseverance

There are times when all poets feel as though the well has run dry or that they just can’t get anyone to accept their poems. In those times you must persevere and continue on. Making a routine of writing helps, as does acknowledging the odds of your poem being accepted among hundreds of other contenders. This week take the time to persevere through any pitfalls, even a poem that is giving you trouble. Perseverance pays off in the end, as many wise people say: “If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again.” Write poems about the heroes you know who have persevered when you are stuck and the dark clouds just might lift…

Good luck to all who continue to persevere, please drop in again next week…


Jim Murdoch said...

And sometimes you will run dry. And dry patches can last a while. I didn’t write a thing between August 1991 and June 1994. Since then I’ve written over 300 poems, 4 novels, 2 plays and 40-odd short stories. It would have been so easy in that 3-year lull to think that was me. Circumstances changed, my life took a change (for the worse actually) and that was all I needed so you never know. What I never did was stopped thinking of myself as a writer.

Issa's Untidy Hut said...

I'll second Jim's assertion about long dry spells, sometimes running years. In addition, as an editor I'd just like to say that acceptance is not the only measure of worth. There are lots of reasons why poems aren't accepted and not all of them have to do with worth.

Most importantly, it is your belief in the work that counts, not anyone else's. Be true to yourself, be true to your work, and the acceptances will come.

Great advice about perseverance, PH!


Poet Hound said...

Don and Jim,

Thank you gentlemen for your insight and your advice. I've had my own dry spells and have branched further into uncharted territory with my writing as a result.
Also, being able to pick the brains of editors (like my interview with you, Don), helps me weather the rejections better. Just because you didn't make it doesn't mean it wasn't a good poem. Sometimes, it just wasn't the right fit for a particular issue or journal, etc.
Cheers to Perseverance!