Write Your Way to Fame

Have you ever thought about how nice it would be to see your poem discussed in the New York Times? Think you have what it takes to become a famous poet? Well the unfortunate truth is that no one has what it takes to be a famous poet. Here's a little exercise: Name the most famous contemporary poet you can think of. Louise Gluck, Frank Bidart, and Maya Angelou, are all well known poets, but did you even know who all of them were?

Mainstream America has no interest in poetry and so your biggest audience, as a poet, is going to be other poets. Even Maya Angelou had to write novels in order to place herself in the who's who's list of poets. Poets have to have day jobs. Even Pulitzer Prize winning poets are essentially awarded a day job along with the esteem and money that comes with the prize.

Now then, if you still aim to be a published poet, despite the lack of fame or wealth you will receive for your endeavors, there are a few things you can do to boost your "career." Considering the fact that your biggest audience will be poets, you might need to establish a name for yourself within that circle.

Get subscriptions to well know literary journals. Keep your poetic eye on the kind of poetry that these journals publish. When you find a reputable journal that publishes poetry that compliments your poetic style, find out how you can submit your poem to this journal.

Submitting poetry to literary journals is an art in itself. Always pay particular attention to the guidelines and be sure to follow them to the last letter. If and when your poetry is published, be sure to pay attention to the rights. You might not be able to submit the same poems to another journal.

All right, then your next step will be to submit poetry to other journals, and since you've been published before, you can put that in your biography. You are now establishing a history of getting published in reputable journals. The more you publish, the higher you can go, see?

You can also try your hand at publishing chapbooks and asking local bookstores if you can do poetry readings to help you sell them. Self-publishing, which is how you publish your chapbooks, is more common and helpful for poets than it is for traditional novelists. The reason for this is that the consumer very rarely seeks after poetry. You might consider publishing your books and chapbooks after developing a history of getting published by literary journals.

Finally, don't count out the power of the Internet Super Highway. Create a website for yourself that attracts the poetic community. Advertise your website and try to boost up your site's Google rating. Once you do this, you have a great marketing tool for your self-published chapbooks and poetry books.

There are many ways, some not even mentioned in this article, for you to establish yourself as a poet. Just remember that it might be a slow, and at times, arduous journey that rarely yields wealth and fame.

Devrie Paradowski is a freelance writer and poet. Her poetry has been published by several literary journals and she has written dozens of articles for various publications including "Poetry Renewal Magazine," and "Poetryscams.com." She is the author of the chapbook, "Something In the Dirt," which can be found at http://www.lulu.com/content/108560 . In 2001, Devrie founded a popular online literary community ( http://www.LiteraryEscape.com ) that has become highly respected for some of the most honest and in-depth poetic critique on the Internet. In keeping with her commitment to inspire amateur writers to hone their skills, she also founded a local writer's group called, "The Fire and Ice Writer's Group."

In The News:


Poetry Open Mic Round-up: 8 spots around town to share your words
San Antonio Current
Open mic nights generally stand in contrast to slam, wherein poets approach the mic at their own peril. They offer artists a chance to grow in their craft without the horror of scorecards. The audience can then enjoy without the soundtrack of whooping ...


The Independent

Poetry round-up: This season's collections ask 'who am I and where do I belong?'
The Independent
This season's poetry collections are overwhelmingly concerned with place and identity. Three major volumes dealing with the question of Ireland dominate, threatening to overshadow English regionalism, Liz Berry's challenging topic in Black Country ...


Poetry Society is alive and well in Nevada
Reno Gazette Journal
We enjoyed the insightful article about Nevada Poets in the Sunday paper [Our Nevada, Aug. 17] but were surprised by a serious omission. It neglected to mention that there is still an active Nevada Poetry Society — a fully vested member of the ...


Montana poet laureate to visit county fair
The Missoulian
“We have put together many poetry events in the valley that allow poets to share their material with others and the Ravalli County Fair poetry contest is no exception,” said Farrenkopf. “The RC Fair poetry contest is in its fourth year and every year ...

and more »

Claire Dodson: An American in Auvillar: Poetry, puppies and self-discovery
UTDailyBeacon.com
They are my hosts in Auvillar, a small village in the south of France where I will spend the next eight days attending poetry workshops and sitting by the river writing—with a lot of good wine, bread and cheese consumed in between. This heavenly ...

and more »

Finding the Poetry in Hip-Hop
Village Voice (blog)
By the time I began studying English and creative writing at NYU, I had already started to identify myself as a poet. I lived and breathed poetry; it was the only way I could compute and make sense of my surroundings. Simultaneously, I was also an EDM ...


Poetry Hickory to celebrate 7th anniversary
Hickory Daily Record
The Sept. 9 event will begin at 5:30 pm with a workshop led by Gibson called "Silencing the Censor: How to Fill the Blank Page." The workshop will cost $10 and is limited to 12 participants. Contact Scott Owens at 828-234-4266 or asowens1@yahoo.com to ...


The Guardian

Hebridean poet wins UK's richest poetry prize with debut collection
The Guardian
Hadfield said: Campbell's light touch is a rarity In contemporary poetry. There's no complacency in reading his work, but the reader always knows they're in safe hands.” Conn described the poet as “a joyous wordsmith”, adding: “His perceptions of the ...
Scots poet wins top prize for Uist-inspired workScotsman
Niall Campbell Wins £20000 Inaugural Edwin Morgan Poetry PrizeEdinburghGuide.com

all 4 news articles »

NPR (blog)

Poet Known As The 'Lioness Of Iran' Dies At 87
NPR (blog)
NPR senior producer Davar Ardalan spoke with Simin Behbahani in June 2009 and has this remembrance: One of Iran's most vocal and outspoken poets died this morning in Tehran at the age of 87. Known as the "Lioness of Iran," Simin Behbahani ...


Dog Channel

Prepare poetry for a contest
Coos Bay World
TALENT — The Friendly Poets Society is sponsoring a free religious poetry contest with a $1,000 grand prize. There will be 50 prizes in all, totaling more than $4,000 in cash and book prizes. To enter, visit www.friendlypoets.com or send one poem of ...
15 Types of Poets You'll Find at ReadingsBustle
Poetry and Dogs Make the Perfect Contest CombinationDog Channel

all 3 news articles »
Google News

Feelings, O How Glorious!

Sometimes we feel hard-pressed, Our backs against the wall;... Read More

Daybreak at Pikes Creek [a Poem]

Daybreak at Pikes Creek [Summer of 2005]Daybreak by Lake Superior... Read More

Top 20 Poetry Quotations

Explore the meaning of poetry and the motivation of poets... Read More

The Butcher of Lima and Footprints to Mantaro Valley (Two Poems)

Footprints to Mantaro Valley (Peru; in English and Spanish)In what... Read More

Three Poems: Liberty, Death, and a Frog [with Commentary on Liberty]

Frog SummerSummer grows hot, for the New-blooded frogs; The bugs... Read More

Storm Rising along the Lima Coast

Storm Rising along the Lima Coast [Summer of 2002]?wind was... Read More

Learn About Love From Poet Rumi

In this modern age of technology, busy lifestyles, and obsession... Read More

Lima, City with the Stretched out Wings [In English and Spanish]

Lima, City with the Stretched out WingsIt's an ink-black... Read More

Rhymes of an Ordnance Man [Vietnam War: 1971]

Rhymes of an Ordnance Man [Vietnam War: 1971]An eleven part... Read More

Beautiful Dreamer, Stephen Foster, Americas First Folk Song Writer

"Beautiful Dreamer" was written by Stephen Foster just before his... Read More

Shadows of the Andes; Ollantayambo; and Cesar Vallejo [Poems in English and Spanish]

1) Shadows of the Andes [or: Song to the Andes]I... Read More

To My Friend, With Love

All is still; all quiet; The world seems to... Read More

Our Home

Our home was warm in the shade of the trees... Read More

Two Poems on the Traditions of Peru [in English and Spanish]

Atahualpa's Game [Peruvian]Sometimes, it's not wise To share your wisdom... Read More

Colorful Talk

"I heard what you said, Red. Yet, I have to... Read More

Antidotes for an Alibi

Amy King's first full-length collection, Antidotes for an Alibi, insists... Read More

Biography of Charlotte Bronte

Charlotte Bronte (1816 ?1855) Novelist and Poet.Charlotte was the daughter... Read More

The Plane from Iquitos [1959-Part One]

Iquitos & the Amazon Part OneIt was December 2, l959,... Read More

Anne Bradstreet, To My Dear and Loving Husband, A Discussion

"To My Dear and Loving Husband" was written by America's... Read More

Burning Autumn Leaves [a poem in Spanish and English]

Burning Autumn Leaves [1950s in St. Paul, Minnesota]My long steel... Read More

Footprints to Mantaro Valley (a poem in Spanish and English)

Footprints to Mantaro Valley (English version)In what retreat art hid?-Where... Read More

A Different Place...

I wish we had met 20 years ago... A different... Read More

Tsunami -a Poem Dedicated To Help Aid and Awareness and Encourage Future Harmony. Make Peace Not War

Real Power.One Tsunami, and all our armies, Seem belittled by... Read More

The Merchant of Copan [In English and Spanish]

English VersionThe Merchant of Copan [480 AD]Advance: The ballgame at... Read More

A Hundred and Fifty Dead [Korean War--l952]

There I sat, ninety-five degree weatherOutside; the bookstore caf, was... Read More