Ingrid Anderson on South African poetry publishing

In a recent interview with Dye Hard Press, Ingrid Anderson talks about her work publishing online poetry journal Incwadi, and about her own work.

Getting published is difficult for South African poets, especially for emergent poets. It seems a poet cannot get published without already being published – a Joseph Heller situation.

The realities of the market are that hard-copy journals are expensive to produce and they rely on subscriptions to survive, more so than sales from book stores. There are very few journals out there – most of the journals I grew up reading no longer exist.

For some years, I had been speaking to other poets about my wanting to bring out a journal. I wanted to provide another space where good poetry could be published. Two years ago, I began to speak to friends who were editors of poetry journals, to get an idea of what was involved. I made the financial decision to go online with a simple, quality website. I do the html coding myself, so it costs me two weekends a year, with no overheads other than the cost of bandwidth. The benefit of online is that I can use images as well, and allow them to interact with the poetry – which has fascinating results.

Read the full interview here.

4 thoughts on “Ingrid Anderson on South African poetry publishing

  1. i like writing poems espacial when im hurt and when im sad i write three to five a day with deffeernt views so i will like to be in your book that u gona publish

    • Masonwabe, writing poems is a great way to think through difficult times. I believe there are three kinds of poems: ones we write for ourselves to work through our feelings; ones we write to be performed aloud, like on stage; and ones for other people to read in books or magazines. Each one requires a very different kind of writing style. Before you think about publishing, thinking carefully about what kinds of poems you are writing. The advice I give on this site is specifically for the last kind: poems for others to read in books or magazines.

  2. You don t stand a chance of getting your collection published unless you have a name as a poet, or are a well known writer who also writes poetry. Or you are a well known rugby player or have some other claim to fame and also write poetry. So how do you become a more established poet without having a collection?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *