This week I’ve been nagging people to read what I’ve written. It’s a terrifying thing. I’ve found it harder with poetry than short fiction, mainly because I’m giving more of myself away…..and there is the danger that everything is viewed as autobiographical . This element makes me sound much more interesting than I am.
I’ve slowly grown my circle of readers for poetry, starting with one very trusted friend a year ago (thank you Gill!), and gradually asking more people to read and feedback. It’s like cooking a fabulous birthday cake, or special dinner and hoping to goodness no one declares it the most disgusting thing they have ever tasted (I take cooking almost as seriously as writing).
Why do it? It shatters my ego more than it flatters it. Quite simply , I need to know if there is any value in what I write. Is it clear? Does it speak to people who may not know me inside out? Have people gained something from spending their time reading it? Feedback has been good (I have some kind friends), and best of all a few poems have stood out as the ones with the most impact. This shows me which ones I should consider for competition entry, which styles work, and also which ones really should be binned.
Tomorrow (and as much of the rest of the week I can steal), is going to be dedicated to developing short story ideas for a couple of big competitions coming up in March. I’ve got a few more poetry competitions to research too. Motivation is being maximised…..especially for the cat.
Published by Kathryn Anna
Kathryn is a writer based in Shropshire. She writes short fiction, flash fiction and poetry. She has no formal education in creative writing but she reads every poetry book she can get her hands on, and enjoys various online writing groups and courses.
Kathryn has M.E., which brings its own challenges to her working practice, and means she has to monitor her activity with great care. Despite the frustration of these limitations she has reached her goal of having work published, thanks to support from Nine Arches Press Dynamo mentoring scheme.
Kathryn has work published or forthcoming in print magazines like Mslexia, Popshot Quarterly and The Dawntreader and online in places like Words for the Wild, Nine Muses Poetry, Sledgehammer and Riggwelter Press. She was longlisted for the 2019 Fish prize for short fiction, and Paper Swans Press single poem prize in 2020.
Kathryn is a columnist for Spelt Magazine, and has recently been awarded a micro bursary from Raven Studios in Shrewsbury to work on a new pamphlet. She also accepts private commissions under the moniker Poems from the Hare.
When her health allows, Kathryn works as a freelance copywriter and can write confidently across a range of subjects, including travel, food, literature, hospitality and customer service. In addition to these core topics, excellent research skills means she can tackle subjects as diverse as muscle cars and dog training. She takes on proofreading and editing work as requested. You can find out more at her business site
Kathryn loves language and its persuasive power. Most of all she loves to write.
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