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Old 12-03-2008, 03:00 AM
Holly Martins Holly Martins is offline
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I was watching a science documentary on TV and one of the contributors said that it was a great time to be a physicist and I wondered, is it a great time to be a poet?
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Old 12-03-2008, 04:28 AM
Jerry Glenn Hartwig Jerry Glenn Hartwig is offline
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High school and college were great times to be poet. At least, I found that to be so.

You ddn't even have to be a good one *grin*.
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Old 12-03-2008, 07:04 AM
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James Wilk James Wilk is offline
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Well, in terms of the availablity to disseminate one's work, there has never been a time with more venues for publication, thanks to the internet and the proliferation of on-line journals and so forth.

In terms of the availability of low-residency MFA programs to matriculate into or the ability to communicate with and workshop with fellow poets, there have never been more opportunities.

But with the rise of MFA programs and the increasing number of working poets in and out of academia, the competition for book contracts, grants & awards, placement in the top journals and bookings to read one's work has never been fiercer.

It's just as tough as ever to get a full-length manuscript published or to win major prizes or to appear in the top journals.
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Old 12-03-2008, 01:09 PM
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Wintaka Wintaka is offline
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IMHO, there has never been a better time to be a bad poet, never a worse time to be a good one.
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Old 12-03-2008, 01:41 PM
Anne Bryant-Hamon Anne Bryant-Hamon is offline
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For me, writing poetry is like drinking water or coffee, or like breathing air. It is just something I have an inner need to do. If I didn't have the need, I'd probably stop. Whether or not I'll ever be considered a good poet -I still have a need to write. I'm sure many of us process our thoughts about the world in verse in our minds. But that's really not an answer to your question. I think it is as good a time as any to be alive and to be a poet.

Anne
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Old 12-03-2008, 01:43 PM
Anne Bryant-Hamon Anne Bryant-Hamon is offline
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Quote:
Originally posted by Wintaka:
IMHO, there has never been a better time to be a bad poet, never a worse time to be a good one.
Wintaka - you are about to get a star. Can you elaborate on your reasons for this statement?

Anne

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Old 12-03-2008, 04:49 PM
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Quincy Lehr Quincy Lehr is offline
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As far as publication and so forth--who knows? Hell of a lot easier if you're a woman or black nowadays than in previous eras--which is a damn good thing. As far as publication--depends. And between Mahon, Walcott, Heaney, and a few others, we seem to have roughly our allotted portion of great running around at the moment.

As far as the time-wasters, snobbish gatekeepers, messers with inflated views of what they do, etc., there are probably more of those than ever, but hey, you can also have a discussion about a draft in real time with people whose opinions you respect on four continents.

So, it's hard to say.

Quincy

[This message has been edited by Quincy Lehr (edited December 03, 2008).]
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Old 12-03-2008, 07:08 PM
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Laura Heidy-Halberstein Laura Heidy-Halberstein is offline
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Quote:
Originally posted by Quincy Lehr:
Hell of a lot easier if you're a woman or black nowadays--which is a damn good thing.
Quincy
Nice, Quincy, have you tried being either of those things lately?

And why, fer God's sake, do people think that if they add an after-thought like which is a damn good thing that they can say the most outrageously things and not be called on it?

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Old 12-03-2008, 07:14 PM
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Rose Kelleher Rose Kelleher is offline
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I paused at that one too, Lo, but then I figured out he meant it's easier for women and black people to get published nowadays THAN IT USED TO BE. (At least, I'm pretty sure that's what he meant, since he's Quincy, and not some crotchety old sourpuss with a white-male persecution complex.)
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Old 12-03-2008, 07:22 PM
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Quincy Lehr Quincy Lehr is offline
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That's precisely what I meant, Rose.

Lo, seriously, give me some credit. I stated that the number of black and female poets getting published nowadays is far greater than it was, which is a positive development. How does that make me a sexist or racist? And good God, Lo, you know me. And you know I have a pretty sensitive nose when it comes to bigotry.

Editing in--Ah, I see the point of misunderstanding! I edited a bit, saying "easier" than previously, as opposed to easier for black and female poets than for white and male poets (which is simply untrue; we white males are still overrepresented relative to our weight in the population)--but even with the linguistic ambiguity, the statement as Lo interpreted it is so obviously untrue and at variance with views of mine that are a matter of public record as to be risible.



[This message has been edited by Quincy Lehr (edited December 03, 2008).]
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