Poetry is my therapy. I put thoughts, dreams, anger, sorrow, excitement, joy, and sometimes despair into the words that become poems. Some poetry competitions exist, and I will enter when I feel brave or the contest is legitimate and needs entries.
What do I mean, “I will enter when I feel brave”? I found over the years that many poetry judges only like poetry that’s written the way they would write. They are blind to beautiful words bound together exquisitely into a tapestry if the colors aren’t the same that they would use. I’ve read poetry and taught poetry for more years than many people have been alive, and I can recognize writing done differently than I write IF it well-done. Anyway, back on topic, as I would tell my students.
The Oklahoma Romance Writers’ Guild holds an annual contest of published works in several categories, but they also offer one unpublished category – poetry. I support the organization because it’s run by people to want to promote good writing, so I enter the poetry category each year. Last year, my entry made the finals. This year, my entry, “Dreams of Loving,” won. Excited? Oh, yes. Glad I entered? Definitely. Will I enter again? Of course.. A win gives me motivation to continue entering competitions I may never win.
Sometimes entering a contest does pay off with a win.