Wednesday, 2 November 2016

changming's literary dilemma/indolence

since returning at the end of may from our medical trip to beijing where Allen had a 'minimally invasive' surgical operation on his discs, i have not been able to write as frequently as in the past few years; and few of my recent poems are as satisfactory to myself as before, though i have actually written as much poetry as in previous months. for instance, on october 16 alone, i wrote 12 pieces.

i have a profound fear that i might run out of inspirations anytime, and this fear has been haunting me ever since i begun to publish poetry in english in mid-2005. fortunately, thus far i have managed to keep my Muse alive in my heart. however, i have become so tired of having to make submissions and living with such a large number of rejections or ignorings that i no longer feel like sending my work out there. without making a great determined effort, i would have stopped making poetry subs completely. yes, as a poetry scribbler, the most hateful thing to do is to go out of my way to reach editors/readers. shall i keep forcing myself to send my work out? is it really so important to get things published? i often wonder.

in june, the number of my poetry acceptances has for the first time decreased to fewer than 12, the lowest number i had come down for the previous 5 years at least; in fact, i got only 4 acceptances in june (i made no poetry subs in may), 14 in july, 6 in august, 7 in september,  and 10 in october.

to my  own disappointment, there has been no poetic 'breakthrough' of any kind this year since i happened to know cincinnati review's nomination of my poem 'y' for the 2015 pushcart prize in early january; the only (and the most) encouraging news is an email received on september 30 from a new online magazine drunk monkeys, which informed me that they had nominated my short poem 'with more than being' for best of the net 2016.- this is the first time for me to be a best of the net nominee.

it seems true that without constant encouragement from readers (in the form of an editorial acceptance), i might lose interest in poetry writing once and for all. given this, i am in a dilemma: i enjoy, and am still capable of, writing poetry, but i deeply hate making submissions.

sending poems out simply to get recognition, what a great nuisance or necessary evil it is!

because of my eye problem, i have had to stay away with my computer as much as possible, and sometimes simply keep it shut down for several days in a run. i have been thinking of changing Poetry Pacific from a biannual publication to an annual one next year, or in 2018 at latest. also, as my eye problem gets worse, it has prevented me from making poetry subs, checking publication records, and doing other similar things online in recent years; as a result, i have trouble with editors from time to time and apologize to them for having sent them a 'previously published' piece or failing to notify them of a poem accepted by a different magazine already.

yes, computers offer me great convenience, but have also caused me many health problems in addition to frustrations.