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Adventures in Publishing Poetry

I want to start a blog about my experience sending my work out for publication, getting published, getting rejected, etc. The last year and a half has been a fun ride. Tears. Curse words. Finally, joy. There is nothing like the high of seeing your hard work in print. At least not to me. When I get a copy of a journal I was in, it's a rush. Now, I'm almost done with my first book of poetry, and I feel like I'm finally ready for it.

I want to write about my experiences at length, and I will do so in my next entry. For now, I'll share a good moment and a bad moment.

Good moment:

Getting to shorten my bio. That might sound strange. When I first started trying to get published, I felt embarrassed for not having prior publications. Many lit mags and journals want you to include a bio with your work. When your bio is "My name is Bayleigh and I'm an inexperienced newb," it can be a bit intimidating. I spent the first few months getting nothing but rejections. When that first acceptance letter came in, I was so prepared for it to be a rejection that I had to read it 10 times to accept my acceptance. Ha! I was ecstatic! Finally, I got to have a publication on my bio. After that, they kept coming. And coming. And coming. Many publishers do not want you to list every single publication you have because it can get long after a while. Usually, five or six publication credits is an acceptable length. Once I got past that point and started having to take publications off my bio, that felt good. Now, when I submit, I do so with f%cking confidence!

Bad moment:

Getting published in a print journal where the publisher spelled my name wrong. I still don't know how that happened, but they weren't even close! They spelled everything right in my acceptance letter, and everything was correct in the final proof they sent me, but when I finally got my contributor's copy in the mail, I was mortified. If it was my first name (Bayleigh), I might have been more understanding, but it was my last name, which is six letters and quite common. There was nothing they could do after that. The journal was out already. It was an honest mistake, but still, I never sent my work there again.

That's it for now. I will continue to post about my adventures, submissions, and publications soon. :)


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