toniclark
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Joined: May 5th, 2006, 6:47 pm

January 22nd, 2018, 9:03 am #11

John said  ". . . Picasso painting. Notice how he is always stepping back? Pollack too."

Great analogy to keep in mind!

I'll start a revision thread in the Shipyards later today. Let's collect our ideas and methods in one place.
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GretaB
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GretaB
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Joined: August 21st, 2017, 10:33 am

January 23rd, 2018, 10:22 am #12

poemsofplace wrote: Jeffrey Levine, editor and founder of Tupelo Press has a wonderful series on manuscript revision and compilation.  Here's a link https://jeffreyelevine.com/2011/10/12/o ... anuscript/

If you have good Word skills, you can choose a heading style for each heading and then view the headings in the left-hand corner of your document.  It makes it easier to rearrange poems by clicking and dragging. 

Consider if there is a theme or arc to the poems and place them in an order which facilitates that build.  Look at beginnings and endings of poems to see how they might segue one to the other.

Send the MS to a few friends who have helped you with your edits of individual poems and whom you trust!

Hope this is helpful!
Thank you! Very helpful. I also just found an article "Twenty-Two Poem Hacks" in the Shipyards, which is where I should have posted this in the first place, as Toni points out!
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FranklyDire
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Joined: June 7th, 2015, 6:45 pm

January 30th, 2018, 5:44 pm #13

I don't know if my method is of any use. I am relatively new to poetry, a mere 20 years,
and I am not educated in literature, I am a grease monkey. It is only recently I have
developed a style and that is still changing.

I look at my work of 20 years ago and although I like my work I see many faults and groan.

My current modus operandi, and it has been for the past five years, which drives my
fellow poet Alison Osel nuts is to write a draft, then tinker, I let the poem grow over
a week or so. Usually the poem grows too much and can move away from it's original
thrust and yet I find I enjoy the process immensely and it's rather like watching a child
grow.

I write primarily to please myself and if I really like a poem I will stop editing even if the
consensus is against me. I know this seems to counter the process of workshopping,
but that is the way I work. I have learned a tremendous amount from workshopping,
but I value my own view far about any others. That may seem arrogant, and it may
be wrong, but I want to feel secure in my own persona, that my writing reflects who
I am and of my experience.

Alison often states that the first draft is extremely important and I can't disagree with
that. Others insist that my poems be shortened, in fact brutally cut to the core and yet
I have won 4 IBPC awards, 2 first's and 2 third's, which amazes me. Maybe there is a
place for poems that go against the mode.

My 'Herring Boat' poem has grown a little and for me is quite short, to me editing is like
dressing someone for a posh dinner, adding garments and finally jewels, and of course
we can overdress, turn out gaudy, which I think may be better than being naked.

Looking at my Aardapeling poem The Potato Eaters, I made a serious mistake, I wrote:

No pictures on the wall
I missed a picture on the wall, did not see it at the time. The judge did not see it either
as it won 1st place. I just had to put that right and changed it to:

Lone picture on the wall.
I think ekphrastics must be factually true.
That is the value to coming back to ones work after many years, after all we do
change our views, grow, and see things differently.
I am not saying I will not take advice, I am saying that we have to be true to self
in our work. I remember with my crow poem that a friend suggested I drop some
lines. It won a 3rd in the IBPC. That's not wrong of my pal, it is a pal's view
and we all have our likes and dislikes. but I really liked those lines and so did the judge.
I remember another fellow poet critiquing my poem and applauding it and a month
later I reposted an different version and he hammered it severely. I've done
it myself, liked a poem one day and some time later got mixed up and marked
it down.
So the danger in editing is to spoil a good poem, it is best is to take ones time.

I wish Greta all the very best in editing her manuscript. I would counsel
working with a pal or pals before any savage cutting.
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churinga
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Joined: May 22nd, 2016, 8:06 pm

February 6th, 2018, 6:11 pm #14

After a certain time, you have changed as a person and poet, so any poem more than 2 years old I would not try to revise, the mood you were in when writing it has gone.  You can fix punctuation and edit it but adding new lines for me doesn't work.  If you are putting together a book one technique is to go somewhere different, away from your usual environment.  That literally gives you a new perspective, hopefully you will feel more energized.  
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toniclark
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Joined: May 5th, 2006, 6:47 pm

February 7th, 2018, 9:47 am #15

For me, it's the opposite. Returning to an older poem, having grown as a person and a poet, most often leads to a better poem. I'm likely to see the text in a different light, may realize directions or possibilities I hadn't noticed before. I have often transformed poems for the better by returning years later to old drafts — even to poems I thought were finished.
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churinga
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Joined: May 22nd, 2016, 8:06 pm

February 8th, 2018, 9:42 pm #16

toniclark wrote: For me, it's the opposite. Returning to an older poem, having grown as a person and a poet, most often leads to a better poem. I'm likely to see the text in a different light, may realize directions or possibilities I hadn't noticed before. I have often transformed poems for the better by returning years later to old drafts — even to poems I thought were finished.
Vive la difference. 
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