Sunday, January 29, 2012

Writing Tip: 001

With my daughter's adoption just a little over a week away I have had quite a busy week. This spring I am also co-directing Roger's & Hammerstein's Cinderella (more on that in the weeks to come), however, I have still managed to make enough time this past week to make a few writing submissions.

So far every single one of my submissions has netted me a rejection letter. Some rejections are electronic, just a simple DECLINED on a status bar. Some come in the mail with little stationary from the magazine and a cute old lady's handwritten signature. However, these submissions have already netted me something more than just rejection--and I haven't heard back from any of them yet.

Every Wednesday, Robert Lee Brewer, editor of Poet's Market, hosts a poetry writing prompt on his Poetic Asides blog. Last Wednesday I posted a poem, and, while this isn't technically a submission (the blog isn't a publication) it did help me in one very specific way:


Other poets--some published, some not--were able to read and comment on my poetry. They all said good things (I was new, I'm sure the critiques will come later), but they built up my self-confidence. Two days later Brewer hosted a Poetic Form Challenge, this one with the chance of publication in Writer's Digest magazine. The poetic form was a Tritina--a three stanza poem consisting of three end words that cycle through three tercets in a ABC, CAB, BCA pattern with a tenth line that uses all three words in any order. I posted two and have received great comments so far. My second tritina really pushed the form because I my three end words were can, wind, and lashes, but I used words like pecan, unwind, and eyelashes.

Anyway, head over to Poetic Asides and enter the competition today. It's a fun way to submit poetry, and it will build your self-esteem.

Good luck!


  1. I really liked your can, wind and lashes one. Just like you to push form : )

  2. Dear Kevin

    How absolutely thrilling to know that your daughter is coming home in now less than one week.
    WOW! You can wallpaper her room with rejections - nothing will compare - and by the way - just keep on keeping on and you are in other avenues - Simply continue - everything else will take care of itself. I am going to send you a request to join us over at PA Poeming Friends a group that met at the original Poetic Asides site - I think that you might enjoy the group if you choose to accept. :)