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BRITISH-IRISH-POETS  2005

BRITISH-IRISH-POETS 2005

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Subject:

Re: ethnic writers

From:

Robert Heffernan <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Robert Heffernan <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Thu, 25 Aug 2005 20:03:18 +0100

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (47 lines)

Mairead:

> I'm not an editor though I have plans to start a press representing
> poets working outside their country of birth and/or national tradition
> (hey guess what: just like me!).  When I do, I don't know if "good" or
> "bad"  will be the relevant terms.

If "good" and "bad" were then to become relevant, would you be nervous
of it?  Would it frighten you to have to arbitrate between different
manuscripts and choose those that you should publish?  Would you fear
that you might turn down poets of great merit in favour of poets of
less merit because of the failings of your personal taste?  If not,
would you feel that your personal taste is enough?  Are considerations
of merit even needed?  Is it enough to merely publish as much of
anything as you possibly can, to give others the chance to read it?

Even as I type this I can see the huge advantages in the final
approach (publish as much as you can, let others decide).  But is it
worth loosing the chance to publish much dross to publish one thing
that is spectacular?

> Two final things: one: your new in-between half-way-house blog which
> you were "a little hesitant" and "a little nervous" about announcing.
> Hesitation and caution are useful values in the arts as in other
> things. This second blog serves a different function to your other
> blog.  The work and the thoughts may be unfinished.  Is it "bad" or
> "good" or just "writing"?  You're publishing it, remember.

My reason for setting up the blog was to try and help myself sort
through my own thoughts on "good" and "bad" as applied to my own
poetry.  To see these terns mean anything to me at all.  To see what
ways my art should change if they do.  So, it must be said, that at
present what I have published there is "just writing" which I fear may
be "bad" but can't say for certain.

> I saw "Meet the Fockers" last night: if the Robert De Niro
> character was a poet, I think "improvement of the art" might work for
> him.

I laughed out loud at that one. :)
I don't think I'm intimidating enough to be Robert DeNiro in that
movie.  I'm too small and my posture is very bad!

Thank you for your replies (everybody).
I apologise for my own replies, composed almost entirely of questions.

Bob

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