Saturday, 14 July 2012

The importance of poetry blogs

There's no doubt that the role of poetry blogs is changing. In the current era of Twitter and Facebook, there are more immediate ways to reach and impact on people than via blogs. However, that very speed of "feeds" doesn't make blogs redundant. Instead, it alters and concentrates their focus.

What do I mean by this? For example, I have almost 100 Facebook "friends", nearly all of them from the poetry world. That figure might be lower than for the average user. Even so, just a few hours away from Facebook means I have to wade through dozens of posts to keep up. In other words, the drive of news feeds, while being a key advantage, also turns into a handicap, as significant contributions get lost in the onslaught of information.

Blogs, meanwhile, allow users and readers to catch up at their leisure every few days or weeks. I fully understand that status updates and tweets have their place (some poets also use them in intriguingly creative ways), and have very much replaced blogs in terms of communicating immediacy, but that has cleared the way for poetry blogs to focus on what they are good at: 200 to 400-word posts - be they reviews, news or articles - that need space to develop arguments.

I find the format of a blog is ideal in terms of the content that I can offer - with a bit of luck, Rogue Strands will be around for some time to come!

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