Traditionally, poets submit their poetry to magazines and contests in the hope of getting published. This usually involves quite a bit of work in order to submit the poems. Also, usually there’s a reading fee for reading the poems. Even if one is successful at this, most poetry magazines usually have a very small circulation, so the poems even if they are published will probably not be read by many people. People do gain fame by winning contests but even so, not that many people will read their poetry.

 On the other hand, if one publishes their poems on the Internet there is the possibility that they could be read by millions of people if the website is promoted properly. However, as far in of the poetry experts are concerned being published on the Internet in a poetry blog or forum that is not refereed in any way, is not considered to be published. So in the positive sense of the word, even though many of my poems have been published on the Internet in this blog, that does not make me a published author in the eyes of the poetry aficionados.

 However, most poetry magazines, and contests will not accept poetry that has been published previously. This includes poetry that has been published anywhere on the Internet. To some degree, I think that this is unfair because unless a website is actively promoted, most websites on the Internet hardly get any traffic whatsoever, so just because a piece has been published on the Internet, that does not mean in most cases that many people have actually read it. However, I guess I have to admit that I certainly hope that people will read what I write here, so I guess it is fitting that something posted here is considered to be published.

 I guess what it comes down to is what the goal of the author really is. If your goal is to be considered a real poet by the poetry experts, and aficionados, then by all means you should follow the traditional path that they all follow. However, if your goal is to be read by the largest possible audience, then I would suggest starting a poetry blog, and then figure out how to promote it properly so that many people will come to read it.

 I have decided to follow the less traditional path, and see if I can attract a readership by using this blog. I realize that in the eyes of many, I will not be considered to be a real poet in the traditional sense, but my goal is not to be recognized in the eyes of the establishment, so much as it is to reach as many people as possible with my poetry, and information about poetry. I hope that in some small way this poetry blog will help to rekindle interest in poetry by the regular everyday person.

 On the other hand, I have still not totally decided what I should do. What do you think about it? Do you think that someone who only publishes on the Internet is a real poet? Who should decide what constitutes poetry, the poetry academics, and the editors, or the average people on the street?