Tag Archives: writing competitions

Imagine – poetry by Poetica Christi Press

FullSizeRenderIt’s a great honour to be asked to launch the latest edition of poetry by Poetica Christi Press – Imagine.

On reading these 96 or so poems, I was reminded of a day about 18 months ago where I was standing by a river at a spot that is very special to me, in a remote bush land. Now, I don’t believe in ‘god’ as such, I follow no religion. But I am a spiritual person. I believe in a higher being and have had many experiences in my life that have confirmed this belief.

As I stood by the river a voice spoke to me. Not a real voice but something from deep within or high above, I don’t know, but very real and very clear. This ‘voice’ said to me, ‘You know that everything will be alright. Everything is as it should be and you will be okay.’ That was all. I hadn’t asked a direct question. I had simply stood by the water basking in the beauty of my surrounds. But this statement answered all the fears and questions that had been swirling around inside me in the months prior10615642_10204654385550634_6324159810675767075_n to this. It was as if a higher being had been listening to me and had given me a direct answer. Of course, I cried standing there by the water because I was overwhelmed by the experience.

Life can be like that at times. Overwhelming, confusing, wonderful, painful. Being able to write ourselves through these things is where poetry comes into being. This collection is no exception. Here we have a smorgasbord of what life can lay before us on the table: God, sleep, birth, death, the wonder of nature, peace (or the hope for it), the wonder of life. The simple and the complicated.

From humans trying to define life through theology only to have God wink at us, to wearing yellow linen, to comparing a Crabapple tree to a dessert with cream and strawberry icing, to the majesty of a bird heralding dawn to lines that I wish I had written like:

Oh blessed gift of sleep

To die a little

To be immune from time and memory …

This collection is full of vivid images, humour and thought provoking ideas. And like anyone, I will react to different poems at different times, depending on what’s happening in my life.

I encourage you to take a copy, go into a quiet place and delve into the pages to discover something that resonates with you.

Blaise

 

Writing competitions are a waste of money

10307225_853775251303379_3889231575249127802_nWhether you write non-fiction or fiction, there is a multitude of writing competitions for all kinds of writing out in the world. Winning (or placing) in a writing competition gives a writer something to put on their CV. This is especially important when you don’t have much history or experience that you can list as your credentials. But there are more benefits to writing competitions than you might contemplate. If you think that they are a waste of money, think again.

For many writers, procrastination is an issue. Having a deadline to finish something is a great strategy to overcome procrastination. So entering competitions with deadlines are great practise for the future when you  have deadlines for industry requirements, such as getting your manuscript to your editor on time, or meeting print or marketing schedules.

There might be a cost to enter a competition and this should be seen as an investment in your career. You shouldn’t submit a piece for a competition unless it is as good as you can make it, so having this goal to enter will help you to edit and polish your work to the best you can. Through this exercise, you will learn good writing habits and treat your craft with more professionalism.

Your work may be seen by a prominent literary person. I have heard of people winning or placing in a competition and being asked to see more of their work by literary agents and editors or publishers of journals.

Don’t just look at the entry fee and say, ‘This is a waste of time because I won’t win.’ Win or not, you are actively pursuing a writing life and putting your work out there as much as possible. Each time you enter something, you are improving your skills and gaining exposure. Who knows who might come across your work? Many judges are prominent people in the industry and they may just see something they like.

Blaise