There’s some really great advice in this article by New Writer Awardee and Reading Champion Claire Askew up on Scottish Book Trust’s site. “Scottish Book Trust is a national charity that believes books, reading and writing have the power to change lives. A love of reading inspires creativity, improves employment opportunities, mental health and wellbeing, and is one of the most effective ways to help children escape the poverty cycle.”
In her article, Askew stresses the important of writing “lots of poems” and that it’s also important to know that many of your poems may never be published “and that’s okay.” She also talks about patience, focusing on craft, and being selective about where you send your poems to be published. I really appreciate her advice on a poet’s first book of poems, how ‘you can only have a first book once’ and how it takes a village to create a manuscript. Her focus on building and participating in a community is certainly an approach I support!
These are all things I have come to learn (some the hard way) and I agree with her on every point, including the last one, which is that “the writing is the main thing,” which is to say, keep learning, writing new things, growing as a poet.