Saturday, 25 April 2009

Track Record for Poetry


According to Happenstance, the chapbook publisher, you have to have been published in at least 3 of these reputable magazines before it's worth thinking about a collection or chapbook.

Acumen, Anon, Chapman, Envoi, Frogmore Press, Iota, Manifold (not sure this is still going), Mslexia, Obsessed with Pipework, Other Poetry, Parameter, Poetry Nation Review, Poetry London, Poetry Nottingham/Assent, Poetry Review, Poetry Scotland, Poetry Wales, Poetry Ireland, Raindog , Seam, Spume (now defunct), Staple, Smiths Knoll, The Dark Horse, The Reader, The Rialto, The London Magazine, The SHOp, The North, The Spectator, H Q Magazine (The Haiku Quarterly).

(Online) The Worm
Snakeskin

I tick Poetry Ireland and The Shop. I've been rejected by some more (Smiths Knoll, Mslexia, Envoi, Rialto (but it was a long time ago)) but haven't submitted to quite a few.

While we're on the subject, I don't really see the point of chapbooks. There's next to no publicity and no distribution and who buys them anyway? Only people who know you. No one who's going to take you up and publish your first collection. It's supposed to look good on your CV but it's too close to vanity publishing for my liking. There's not money in it, if anything it costs money. Do they really impress publishers? Anyone know?

1 comment:

Susan said...

Chapbooks don't seem to be expected to make money do they? Friends of mine whose collections were published use them mostly as a showpiece (is that the word I want?)--it does look good on a CV when applying for grants or residencies, or getting invited to a festival or reading. Plus, a book can get a page on websites like Amazon, as well as publishers' and reviewers' sites, while a poet alone won't, so anyone wanting to make a name in poetry circles would do well to have the book, for publicity at least.

I would never self-publish a novel or nonfiction book, but I *have* had my portfolio printed up: my CV, biog, and a selection of my published work and current project excerpts, and then I ordered my own copies. I submit a copy with grant applications and it's on hand when my mother-in-law asks what I've written lately or a visitor asks 'so what do you do'? Plus, with one done every year, it's a record of my work.

It was definitely worth doing, and I think chapbooks can serve much the same purpose, in addition to providing poetry for everyone who enjoys it.

Interesting list you found; some tough ones to get into. It seems the same for short fiction: hard to find a publisher, and no one really wants it unless you already have the name.