Tuesday, February 03, 2009

I'm in one of these (temporary) lulls where I want to give up publishing and live out the rest of my life in a molehill. I've been here before and it passes -- although never quite this bad. I'm gonna ride it out like I always do. It only takes a couple poets to put me in this funk. It's always dealing with the most basic of expectations: respond to e-mails and don't freak on my ass. All I want is to do is publish your poems. Why do you have to make it so difficult? I really take the freaking on my ass personally. No poems are worth being abused. That's how I feel right now, abused.

I'm thinking about requiring poets to take a Myer-Briggs test before they ever submit a single a poem. That and a 30 minute consultation with my personal astrologer. Instead of a book contest, I'm gonna send potential book authors to Poet Survivor Island for a month making them eat snails while competing for toothpaste and condoms. I'll interview them in a dark closet and ask questions like: How bad do you want this book? and Do you think I'm pretty? I'll put it all up on YouTube and let the filthy internet people vote on it.

Sigh -- the thing is, a lot really nice things have happened this past week. I should be focusing on the wonderful people instead of fantasizing of a hermit-lifestyle. Seriously, I wouldn't have a thing to wear.


At 4:39 PM, Blogger DeadMule said...

Face it, you have to be bit nutty to write poems and submit them for publication. All poets are a bit off center, even your "normal" types. But honestly, an editor isn't responsible for a poet's happiness. Only his/her own. So yes, ride it out, Reb. Life is too short.

At 5:11 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'll take the Myer-Briggs and the half hour with your astrologer. I'll clean the house and wash the car if you'll just print these up for me...

At 6:09 PM, Blogger Collin Kelley said...

Ah, sweet fiction, take me away from the crazy poets.

At 6:13 PM, Blogger Jennifer Bartlett said...

Don't ever give up, reb! You are a beacon of light.

At 7:08 PM, Blogger Shann Palmer said...

ENFP- and Capricorn/Scorpio rising

good-natured and careful

my manuscript is ready!

At 6:52 AM, Blogger jaxx said...

oh boy do i feel this one! i put together an anthology a few years back and also publish an ongoing online poetry litzine.

it should NOT be this hard.

(and it's sad how many people have no clue about poetry, but send in their diary scribblings nonetheless.)

At 10:15 AM, Blogger mgushuedc said...

I know. I never want to leave my house, and only contact the outside world via carrier tortoise.

I suspect it's partly the January/February spirit crush, in addition to that segment of poets from Needyville, Arizona.

Read http://www.fartparty.org/2009/01/30/quick-sketchesjanuary-hate/



At 12:03 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Part of me wishes there could be an anonymous website where editors could make fun of contributors but when that one lit mag did it on their blog I found it distasteful but all the same the fact that poets act that way is sad and hilarious to me and deserves some sort of crass funny-making.

At 12:48 PM, Blogger Henry Gould said...

I've never taken this test, but I was given the famous Minnesota Multiphasic (MMPI) in the early 70s, after dropping out of school & going through a serious crisis.

After I took it, the psychiatrist came in & said there was a problem. I had broken the machine. I had registered as ABSOLUTELY normal.

I still think I'm absolutely normal. It's just that all the rest of you are absolutely nuts. When, oh when am I going to be able to convince you all of this sad but true fact?

At 4:12 PM, Blogger shanna said...

i heart you reb. but you knew that.

At 5:47 PM, Blogger B-Ho said...

Ah, poets behaving badly!!

That which does not kill us makes us stronger, and all that...

What you do is valued!!

At 4:12 PM, Blogger Jennifer Bartlett said...

I follow guidelines that I wish more of my contributors would have when I had Saint Elizabeth Street.

1. I read the magazines I submit to.
2. When something is accepted I write a cheery, grateful note. AND I truly am cheery and grateful.
3. I get the work on in time.
4. I congrad the editor once the issue is out and thank them.

So many of my contributors would disappear the second I accepted their poems. This is ultimately why I gave up the magazine. I think editors can (obviously) be vipers too. Everyone needs to slow down. The best advice I ever got was 'poetry is not a horse race.'


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