‘Blue Fifth Review’ editor on blog-posted poems

From Sam Rasnake, editor of Blue Fifth Review:

My view is that work posted at a personal blog or an online workshop is not published, unless the blog itself is an online journal – of which there are many. Should that work be accepted at Blue Fifth Review, I would ask that it be removed from the blog or workshop archives.

Sam also says (commenting here):

At Blue Fifth, I only accept unpublished works by writers.

I have a notebook blog where I post drafts of poems, hoping to obtain comments. I may edit the works or leave as is, but I only keep them posted for five or six days, then remove them. I have had several of those drafts accepted for publication – but those poems that have been accepted aren’t archived at my blogs. I don’t consider those poems to have been published simply because they appeared for a short time at my blogs.


Many thanks for commenting, Sam. Would you consider editing the Blue Fifth Review guidelines to reflect your policy on this issue?

*Update*: Blue Fifth Review’s guidelines now read:

The editor will consider work that has been posted on a personal blog, myspace or an online workshop with the following stipulation: Should the submission be accepted at Blue Fifth Review, the work should be removed all posts and archives of the blog, myspace, or workshop.

Thanks again, Sam!

More on the blog-posted poem issue here.

Published by

Nic Sebastian

Nic is the author of Forever Will End On Thursday and Dark And Like A Web. She founded the now-archived Whale Sound site and is co-founder of The Poetry Storehouse. Nic blogs at Very Like A Whale and Voice Alpha.

2 thoughts on “‘Blue Fifth Review’ editor on blog-posted poems”

  1. I go back and forth on this. As an editor, I would be annoyed to find that someone had posted poems already online — it’s like, well — it’s online already, what do you need us for? My job as an editor is not to stamp QUALITY on the bottom of someone’s poem, and I think all editors hate the feeling of being asked to do that.

    As a reader, though, I just want to read good poems that I haven’t seen before. Unless the author is a friend, I doubt I read their blog regularly enough to re-encounter work. As a reader I don’t care if what I’m reading is part-anthology, and indeed, some of my favourite stuff in magazines is reprinted from a book or from a much older / rarer journal.

  2. I’ve added my editorial position – relative to blogs and online workshops – to Blue Fifth Review’s Submission Guidelines page. I appreciate the debate here. Very helpful.

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