Archive for January 6th, 2011


January 6, 2011

A lot of inexperienced trainee poets send examples of their work to Snakeskin. We are always pleased to receive it, but they may be interested in this list of things likely to annoy an editor.

1. Sending fifty poems in a batch.
The editor will use two or three at most. If he starts wading through a huge batch and finds them not very interesting, he may never reach the good one you put at the end. On the other hand, he may choose the three best, and ignore the rest. Whereas, if you had sent half a dozen, he might have chosen two or three from that selection, and would have been open-minded about the six more that you sent the next month.

2.Pointless fancy formatting.
About once a week we receive batch of poems that are centre-justified. Why? This makes them hard to read, and really does not impress. One can’t help suspecting that the author is not very aware of how poems are usually printed…
Fancy formatting can have a positive role, and if it somehow relates to the poet’s subject or style (I’m thinking of George Herbert’s The Altar) then that’s fine: Read the rest of this entry »