Thursday, February 25, 2010

Winning a poetry competition, what a scam!

As a beginner poet, I took the opportunity to enter my very first poetry competition at So just imagine my delight when a few months later I got this email: 
The votes are in, and we are proud to congratulate you for your outstanding literary achievement. The editors of The International Library of Poetry were thrilled to inform you that your poem was honored with the prestigious Editor’s Choice Award because of your artistic accomplishments and unique perspective--characteristics found in the most noteworthy poetic works. To further commemorate this prestigious achievement, we have elected you to receive the 2007 Editor’s Published Poet Ribbon Award Pin. 
This stunning pin proudly displays your elevated status in our poetic community. Since only an elite group of published poets were selected to receive this special honor, imagine the sense of pride you will feel when others see you wearing the 2007 Editor’s Choice Published Poet Award Pin. What an impressive way to show off your status as an honored poet for the year 2007! 

I went back to the competition site but found no mentioning of my name or my poem. On the other hand, what I did find was: 

To take advantage of this special offer to commemorate your exceptional poetic talents, simply go here. This exclusive pin is only $19.95, plus shipping & handling. If you wish to send us your order by mail, please include a copy of this email and your completed order form to receive this special offer. 

So let me get it straight. Is it because I try to write poetry you take me for a total moron? 

Is the competition simply a away to collect email addresses of would-be poets, who are willing to pay to see their name in print, and to have a pin to stick to their pinhead? 

If I was interested in paying for fake awards, I would not have wasted my time writing poetry (well trying to write poetry). Instead, I would have ordered my own pin with whatever title I wanted for only $3.99. 

I may be a crap poet, but I’m not a complete fool. So count me out!


  1. I had two similar situations. You think I would have learned from the first. I also write poetry and my poem was selected to be published in a poetry book. On this occasion I had forgotten to respond so didn't look further into it.
    On the second occasion, my son submitted a poem and was also selected. Because it was for him, I reviewed the materials that were sent. For a mere $40 I could purchase the book which included his poem. I had no choice but to buy it not wanting to disappoint him. We did receive the book and it included his poem as well as approximately 200 others.
    They probably publish every poem they receive $40 for, I'm sure they're not selective. If you're looking for recognition for your work, this is not the way to go. Although it was published as promised, it was pretty much a rip off.

  2. then I created my blog, and stopped seeking recognition :)

  3. 'I may be a crap poet." Are you fishing for compliments? Seriously, a man of your talent need not sink so low. :p Consider the really crappy ones.

  4. Now this is totally devastating.I guess the best people to appreciate one's work are fellow poets.No recognition is more awarding than that!

  5. חבל שאתה כותב רק באנגלית,כאן בארץ יש קבוצת משוררים שמפרסמים/מפיצים וכו' ומבקרים שירה צעירה.אני מכירה אנשים שהתחילו להתפרסם דרכם.איך שלא יהיה,אני מאד מתרשמת מהמגוון והנושאים שאתה כותב עליהם.לא יכולה ממש לשפוט כי האנגלית שלי לא מספיקה כדי לשפוט. אנא,המשך!