Tuesday, February 01, 2011

Twitter Special Focus for Atlas Poetica 9

Atlas Poetica : A Journal of Poetry of Place, issue 9, Summer, 2011, will be focussing on Twitter. It's been two years (can it really be so long?) since we did our first focus on Twitter. Twitter continues to grow as a micropoetry community with poets publishing tanka, kyoka, and gogyohka via Twitter. There are several Twitter microjournals such as microcosms and 7x20, as well as archives, such as the Dragonfly Archives (now closed), and Jars of Stars.

For ATPO 9 we will relax our rule requiring first English language rights to accept tanka, kyoka, and gogyohka that have been tweeted and not published in regular or tanka journals. We wish to focus attention on Twitter poets, as encourage and support Twitter poets to submit to the regular tanka journals. Twitter is the single largest publisher of tanka, kyoka, and gogyohka in English, publishing approximately two thousand a year. That's as large as Modern English Tanka, the journal that is now defunct, and larger that Atlas Poetica (we published approximately fifteen hundred tanka, kyoka, and gogyoka a year). Atlas Poetica is the most voluminous publisher of tanka, publishing more tanka per year than any other journal in print or on the web.

As a consequence, Twitter is a major force for introducing tanka to readers and writers, and the workshopping and fellowshipping that occurs on Twitter spurs literary development and appreciation. However, the succinct nature of the forum also means that in depth discussions and analysis are very difficult. Since anyone can publish anything, it is an excellent opportunity for novices to try their hand and receive feedback, but it's also an overwhelming and confusing means of reading tanka if one wishes to be a serious reader. Twitter publishes fifteen hundred micropoems a day. Trying to sort out the tanka, kyoka, and gogyohka from that flood requires time and patience, and means that in spite of the efforts of curators and archivists, a complete record of tanka on Twitter is impossible to achieve.

Atlas Poetica hopes to introduce readers to Twitter poets who deserve their attention, and to provide information and a list of resources for the reader who wishes to dip into the fecund stream of micropoetry published on Twitter. We also hope to encourage Twitter poets to submit their poetry for publication in print and online journals and anthologies so that it will be more durable and accessible.

The reading window for ATPO 9 is March 15 – April 30, 2011. It publishes in July. Complete guidelines, free back issues, and free Special Features are available at: AtlasPoetica.org