Submission – 1/26/07

I’ve just submitted two poems for a contest being held by Flashquake. These poems are Fibs. A new poetry form created back in April of 2006 by Gregory Pincus.

They also are taking flash fiction under 100 words for the contest, but I don’t have any fiction that short. I did submit an under 1000-word piece for their Spring issue. I’ve tried publishing it elsewhere, but it’s somewhat unusual, and it’s been hard to place. Their normal line limit for poetry is under 35 lines, and almost all of my poetry is under 35 lines, so I might also submit a poem.

I should know the results for both the contest and the Spring issue by the end of February.

I am going to begin metioning my submissions in this blog. That way, when you, my adoring fans, and friends, notice I haven’t mentioned submitting anything for a few months, you can ask me whether I have discontinued the practice of posting the information, or whether I have idiotically stopped submitting stuff; I have a backlog of about 500 poems written (not that all of them are of publishable quality, but many of them are). I should be submitting much more often.

0 thoughts on “Submission – 1/26/07

  1. Databob

    Thanks for reminding me. I just popped out the 2 pictures for the same contest. It’s not really that fair that you’re up for a first place award of $75, and For a picture that I submitted, only $10. But, you may have agonized more over your work(s) than I. Than again, maybe not…

  2. John

    I do know that regardless of how quickly one types, and how long one agonizes over the words, it’s going to take longer to type a poem (a couple hundred keystrokes or so) than it is to take a digital picture (one click).

  3. Databob

    Hang on, that sounds like an argument I’m willing to undertake!
    Even though the final product may have been the result of 1/20 second, what you don’t see is the hours, sometimes days of shooting pictures that you think will turn out placing the composition of the picture, not to mention the agonizing over the results to determine which photo may have turned out the way you really envisioned. This is assuming that it’s not a digital picture that you may be computer editing, color correcting, etc. Or in this modern day and age, the art may be nearly entirely computer-generated, the result of hours and hours of labor and possibly several pictures, which were also the result of hours and hours of shooting. So, that’s where the whole “worth a thousand words” thing comes from.
    Now, mind you the greatest amount of time spent for a photo was still the time spent shooting a bikini-clad supermodel. And who can really blame them?

  4. John

    I will address your arguments out of order:

    1) Didn’t the requirements of the contest require no digital editing of the pictures?
    I thought so. That argument is easily dismissed.

    2) There was no such requirement on the poetry, so I did edit them. Admittedly the poems are short, so there wasn’t much to edit, but some.

    3) I agonize over which of my poems best display the thoughts in my mind or the emotions in my heart.

    4) The world never sees my failed poems.

    5) I am pretty sure the phrase “a picture is worth a thousand words” refers to accuracy, since photographs “don’t lie.” Of course, with digital editing, they do. So pictures are no longer worth 1000 words. It has nothing to do with the amount of work that goes into a photograph and the amount of work that goes into crafting a 1000 word poem. Trust me.

  5. Databob

    And I will re-address your arguments in the order received.
    1) Yes, THIS contest required unedited photos, but that doesn’t discount any other points that I’ve made about the number of photos, and picking the good from the bad, editing before the click of the shutter…
    2) Good points. And perhaps your writing for this particular event colored the final work. My pictures were just taken. Then, after you mentioned the contest began the selection process.
    3) I also agonized over which were some of the better works, henceforth I asked your advice. And since I was submitting something that I didn’t actually take with the contest in mind, there were some critical evaluations that had to take place.
    4) My camera, cellphone, and computer hard drive are filled with attempts that didn’t really turn out… So, only my close friends who sat through the Germany picts ever saw any of them. 🙂
    5) Ok, you caught the bull**** end of the argument. If you don’t have a strong closing point, just make something out to be bigger than it is. Nonetheless, I’d like to state for the record that I do believe that a well taken photo, paining, computer generated image, or sculpture should be approx. equivalent to 1000 words. Visual art, when done properly should inspire those whose medium is the written word, and a well written poem or story should be capable of inspiring an artist. And 15 words usually won’t create a painting. A Polaroid picture – maybe. So, I say that the conversion rate stands. I’m not trying to devalue your work, I’m just being combative on the side that a considerable amount of thought goes into other works as well. Which, of course, you already know. So it comes back to the “Who can put a price tag on art?” argument. Apparently, short poem $75, small picture $10. Done. 🙂
    Anywho, thanks for the info on the contest in the first place. See what an act of kindness gets you? A fun little debate.

  6. John


    I could mention that you used up my time to help you select yours…so if you win, I am owed some of that $10. However, I would have to admit I used up the members of my Writer’s Group time to help me select mine, and I’m not sharing with them. Of course, that’s what a writer’s group is for. Some might argue that is what a friend is for, too. Unfortunately, without one, you had to rely on me, right?

    5) A well-written haiku, only 17 syllables, paints a picture. But well-written haiku are difficult to write. An overly verbose individual will take 1000 words to describe a painting. But a master of the quill will take less. (I readily admit, I am no master. I am still at the apprentice or journeyman stages) At age six I wrote the following poem:

    Cornflake leaves beneath the trees
    are they breakfast for the breeze?

    I challenge you to take a photograph that illustrates that 11-word poem.
    I realize you will have to wait until autumn to do so. I’ll wait.

    — Finally, I think I read somewhere that this is random acts of kindness week.
    I like debates, so thank you.

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