Okay, here are the next steps for this challenge. Before you dive into them, click here to read the original guidelines for the challenge.
Step One: Write the Poems
We accomplished this step during the month of November. We have 30 prompts to prove it.
Step Two: Revise the Poems
This step is optional, though I highly encourage taking a look over your first drafts and playing around with them in December.
Order the New Poet’s Market!
The 2017 Poet’s Market, edited by Robert Lee Brewer, includes hundreds of poetry markets, including listings for poetry publications, publishers, contests, and more! With names, contact information, and submission tips, poets can find the right markets for their poetry and achieve more publication success than ever before.
In addition to the listings, there are articles on the craft, business, and promotion of poetry–so that poets can learn the ins and outs of writing poetry and seeking publication. Plus, it includes a one-year subscription to the poetry-related information on WritersMarket.com. All in all, it’s the best resource for poets looking to secure publication.
Step Three: Collect the Poems
I’m looking for 10-20 pages of poems. Not more than one poem per page, though it’s okay to have more than one page per poem. If you wrote every day in the challenge, this means you’re going to have to make tough decisions about which poems to include.
A couple recommendations:
- Look for quality first. That’s what I’ll be looking for first.
- Search for a theme. It might be a storyline, common subjects, a voice, a mood, etc. Not necessary, but this can make a collection stronger.
Step Four: Format the Manuscript
I’m really not too picky here, but I do want all the poems in the same file. There are few things that irk me more than receiving 20 individual files.
Here are a few guidelines:
- 10- to 12-point font like Arial or Times New Roman (or something simple like that) is preferred. In other words, nothing too fancy.
- 1″ margins–give or take.
- .doc, .docx, .txt files are my favorites. But if you’re unable to do those, .pdf can work too.
- Please include your name and contact information.
- Please include a title for the manuscript.
- Table of Contents is not mandatory, but it’s a nice touch.
- Feel free to include a bio–but I’ve never used a bio to guide my judging.
- Please no images.
Also, I won’t accept/consider manuscripts that include more than 20 poems with instructions that I pick my favorites. That’s not how this challenge works. You’re the poet; you need to make the artistic decisions.
Step Five: Submit the Manuscript
Submit manuscripts to firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject line: 2016 November PAD Chapbook Challenge. I have a very busy inbox–so the e-mail subject line is very, very important. Very. Deadline: January 15, 2017.
Step Six: Wait for Judging
My goal is to make a decision by spring. March 20, 2017. If I hit that goal, we should be ready to jump into the 2017 April PAD Challenge with some excitement.
Robert Lee Brewer is Senior Content Editor of the Writer’s Digest Writing Community and author of the poetry collection, Solving the World’s Problems (Press 53). He edits Poet’s Market and Writer’s Market, in addition to writing a free weekly WritersMarket.com newsletter and a poetry column for Writer’s Digest magazine.
He will try to make a post or two this month with strategies for collecting poems into a chapbook-sized manuscript.
Follow him on Twitter @robertleebrewer.