“But you need that contrast!”

Today I was able to cross another goal off my Day Zero list—specifically, the goal about having an opinion on a poem in a Willow Springs meeting.

I consider poetry to be my weakest of the three genres we publish at Willow Springs, and though I’d been going to the meetings for a year, I had yet to have an unasked for opinion. Until today the extent of my contribution had been to raise (or not raise) my hand when voting on who liked a poem, or once trying to articulate something that sounded like an original thought after being asked what I thought. I’m not an authority on poetry and so I’ve always been afraid of saying something completely off the mark.

Today, however, I spoke up not once, but twice! First, to talk about how I thought we needed contrast between two adjacent images in a poem and second, to talk about how I’d had a very strong negative reaction to a second poem. (I don’t want to go into more detail here since these are submissions to the magazine.)

In other, less exciting news, Mid-American Review rejected my short story, so I think it’s now time for me to start submitting to magazines that are a tier lower in prestige. I expected this to happen (this is the second story I’ve ever submitted, after all), but it still makes me a bit depressed. What’s also interesting though is that none of the other journals that rejected this piece really bothered me that much until now. No idea why this was the one that incited that change.

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