In a recent Writer’s Workshop, T. Anders Carson (a great poet BTW) said that the hardest part of writing poetry is getting that first line, but once you get it, you can take off with it.I’ve hit many walls in attempting to write that first line. Sometimes, I write down the first words that enter my mind based on a topic I choose (or from a prompt). Then, I look at the list and combine words or find rhymes. Pretty soon, I find myself writing that first line! Maybe you could try it, too when you find yourself stuck on words.
Carson also said to write for yourself, but be cognizant of how you market yourself because those are two different things.I believe this means that when you’re ready to submit a poem you edited to different publications, it’s important to take a look at what kind of work they publish and read their guidelines accordingly. Sometimes, you’ll find a perfect match for your poem. At other times, you have to look deeper or write another poem based on what they want.
So, don’t get discouraged. The important thing is to stay informed with the market, but keep writing what you like. The more we practice our craft, the better we get.Bad Robot Poetry (blogzine) and Epiphany (Online Magazine) are two publications with tons of wonderful poetry and fiction to read. The variety is great!
You can take a look at the poems I wrote on their websites here:
April 24, 2013 “Robots”
May 1, 2013 “Inability to Speak” http://www.epiphmag.com/Epiphanyepiphmagissue19Poetry.html#mar
You can find T. Anders Carson’s poetry here:http://tacarson.tripod.com/Welcome.html