a little kick for poetry

November 14, 2019

We recently highlighted a Kickstarter campaign for Claudia Castro Luna’s ambitious project, One River, a Thousand Voices. An all-or-nothing funding effort, it has been named a Kickstarter “Project We Love” and still needs a lot of support.

If you have a few bucks to give, crowdfunding is a lot like voting: one person, one vote, one dollar, can make a difference. It’s also instructive and intriguing to see what’s going on in the support-poetry world. For example,

Copper Canyon Press is running an all-or-nothing Kickstarter campaign to support the 2020 publication of Indigo by Ellen Bass along with books by nine other authors (Traci Brimhall, Victoria Chang, Leila Chatti, John Freeman, Heather McHugh, Philip Metres, James Richardson, Alberto Ríos, and Ed Skoog).

There are also crowdfunding opportunities for poetry books, music, performance, film, and travel on IndieGoGo and gofundme (including a nearly three-year old, apparently still open, project to publish My Friend Jack, a collection of work by the late and beloved Jack McCarthy).

Most crowdfunding projects offer the option of supporting in someone’s name, so as we approach the gift-giving season, you might consider the win-win possibilities.


September 26, 2017

Very excited to finally have in hand the August Poetry Postcard Fest (APPF) anthology, 56 Days of August (Five Oaks Press).

Each August, hundreds of people from around the world write and mail a daily poem on a postcard — spontaneous, un-edited, and, more often than not, going to a complete stranger. 2016 was the tenth anniversary of APPF, and the anthology was assembled to honor the occasion. It includes poems and full-color images selected from the participants’ submissions. Your faithful blogger was honored to be invited to co-edit the collection with Paul Nelson and Ina Roy-Faderman.

A number of free book-launch-poetry-postcard events are scheduled and more are in the works:

Monday, October 9, 2017, 7:00pm
Bellingham, Washington
Poetry Postcards: a panel and conversation
at the Mount Baker Theatre, Encore Room
A conversation about the possibilities of postcard poetics with panelists Tallie Jones, Nancy Pagh, Eugenia Hepworth Petty, Ina Roy-Faderman, and Joanna Thomas, plus moderator Paul Nelson. They will show images, offer resources, read postcard poems, and may even lead exercises or offer prompts. As a bonus, there will be a postcard exchange: bring unused postcards (commercial or handmade) and take home an equal number contributed by others. (J.I. Kleinberg, coordinator) Click for PDF event flyer with panelist bios.

Thursday, October 12, 2017, 7:00pm
Tacoma, Washington
56 Days of August Book Launch
at King’s Books
Readings by contributing poets — just one of many events scheduled for the Cascadia Poetry Festival

Friday, October 27, 2017, 7:00pm
Portland, Oregon
56 Days of August Anthology: PDX Launch Event & Poetry Reading
at Mother Foucault’s Bookshop
Readings by contributing poets

56 Days of August will be for sale at each event and online. In addition, there’s a 56 Days of August Indiegogo campaign to cover a variety of costs. There are some swell perks — primarily signed copies of poetry books due out this winter. Have a look, buy a book, and please join us at one of these events.

crowdfunded poetry

February 27, 2016


Now and then, it’s instructive (and fun) to visit crowdfunding sites — Kickstarter, gofundme, Indiegogo — and search the term poetry. As you might expect, the bulk of the requests are for books and chapbooks, some supported vigorously, some not at all. But then there are other projects: readings, podcasts, CDs, films, festivals, educational programs, websites, tech support, you name it. While the requests vary widely in their level of sophistication and outcomes, there’s little doubt that poetry is happening, if not thriving.

Have a look. Pledge a few bucks. The next request could be yours.

adopt a poet…

February 2, 2013

adopt a poetThe Academy of American Poets offers extensive free resources on poets and poetry, including biographies of more than 500 poets, from Léonie Adams to Louis Zukofsky. You can support the work of the Academy and show your interest in one or more poets by participating in the Adopt A Poet program, wherein a small donation earns you a bit of real estate on that poet’s biography page. (As the instructions note, “donations do not go directly to the individual poet” but support the further development of the Academy’s online programs.)

Looking for something a little closer to home? Kickstarter has scores of poetry and publishing projects that need support. (You can also search by city. Here’s Seattle.)

The crowdsourcing platform Indiegogo also has writing projects that could use your support.

Then again, it’s Saturday, why not pop in to your local independent bookstore and buy a book of poetry?

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