Light bulb moment. I purchased a labeller and stuck Sample Copy on the back cover of eighty misprinted copies, wrapped them in an order form and mailed them to bookshops. As I am the publicist and admin for Spineless Wonders, as well as editor and director, it took me about two weeks. By this time, The Rattler & other stories, had received great reviews in both the Sydney Morning Herald and The Age and Bookseller + Publisher ran both a review, and an interview with Alec.
Well, this is awkward, she begins, once I sit down, her mouth twisted apologetically to one side. She goes on to say—I’ll tell you what she goes on to say—but it’s hard, because immediately adrenaline floods my chest and I go into a kind of shock, and I am worried already that I won’t get it right, that there will be some kind of blowback for not getting it right, but she says: So it’s about your blog. And my heart stands still.
9. What separates the manuscripts that get marked for further reading from the ones that do not? Craft. Ideas. Resonance. Control. Authority of voice. Whether or not the work is “memorable.” And more often than you might think, the consistency of the work across the manuscript. Many, if not most manuscripts have several fabulous poems. Few manuscripts are made entirely of fabulous poems. Which is just one reason why I encourage submitters to enter manuscripts of around 50-64 pages. I would venture to say that in every contest submission period there are always two or three hundred manuscripts by poets to be reckoned with.