Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Shanna Compton interviewed at Lemonhound.

I think DIY publishing and self-publishing is something every poet should experiment with, because it's really fulfilling in ways that even "winning" the submit-reject game will never be. I don't buy into the scarcity-increases-value theory, or the idea that poetry is a rarified experience attractive only to an exclusive group of intellectuals or academics, blah blah blah. Some people like to position themselves and their work that way, and I don't get it. It's not only self-isolating, it's condescending to potential readers. I'm not speaking of difficulty vs. accessibility. It's more an attitude or stance I find off-putting. You know, in the way the stereotypical record-shop guy is a freaking expert but disdains the act of sharing that knowledge or appreciation with anyone--as if musical sophistication and popularity were mutually exclusive.


I know there are probably some people who believe it’s tacky (or whatever) to self-publish, and will prejudge For Girls on that basis, even at the same time they’re buying the new Radiohead album, or seeing the latest David Lynch movie, or coveting a painting spotted during an open art studio tour. But that’s not an argument I feel like having anymore. The poems are the same whether I publish them or somebody else does. It takes no more confidence for me to publish myself than to ask/expect someone else to do it for me. I like retaining control of how the work is presented, what the book looks like, and knowing where it goes. It’s fulfilling for me to take on that responsibility, rather than handing it over.



At 5:36 PM, Blogger Collin said...

Shanna rocks!


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