Sunday, May 16, 2010


As promised I went to the live online poetry panel discussion at the digital con CoyoteCon and I was not terribly happy with it.  The three panelists Karen Newman, Lisa Snyder and political poet Victor Infante were very well prepared but so well prepared that they sounded rehearsed.
I came away with five major highlights and two minor highlights from the discussion.


1.   Poets either write for the reading public or they write for public performances but its hard to do both.  Literary devices such as alliteration and rhyme works for performances but turns off editors who prefer free verse and are averse to rhyme.

2.   They used the word enjambret and I have no idea what it means.

3.   Ezines and ebooks may be the future for sf/f/h poetry but the onrush of changing technology makes it hard to preserve work in what may soon be obsolete technology

4.   Political poetry focuses today on the economy and race but rarely on either healthcare or the war

5.   ASIMOV'S tends to publish mediocer poetry.  Really?  Sounds like what I use to say, an editor is terrible until he or she became brillant and started buying from me

Now for the minor points.

1.   The format makes it easy for panelists to ignore unpopular or controversial questions

2.   The format is slow and its not helped when a person who enters the chat room is announced and when a person leaving the chat room is indicated by the sound of a door closing abruptly.

There has to be a better way to do this online.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for going to the session, and for commenting on it. Enjambment is what they talked about, actually--where a sentence or phrase is broken over two lines.

    I'm sorry you felt some questions were ignored. It may have been the format or the speed of the session, or they may have felt they answered your questions. You can always post more questions on the transcript, which is located here:, and you're free to add any additional comments you think might be helpful to genre poets as well.

    The people being announced as they come in isn't an easy fix, but the door shutting sound will be removed. That you felt it was slow isn't something we can fix this year, unfortunately.

    Maybe next year you'd like to volunteer to be on a panel about poetry, perhaps provide a broader view.