Thursday, 10 November 2011

Blood, Sweat and Tears - Karen Harvey

When Sue announced the launch of the Poetry Space Competition 2012 on facebook I made the light hearted reply ‘The closing date seems such a long way off but I expect it will be here before we can blink...’ and made a joke about time passing more quickly as we get older and promised that I would enter again this year.

Since then I’ve been mulling it over and recalling last year’s last minute entry.  It wasn’t that I intended to leave it till the last minute, I started working on several trains of thought about 6 weeks before the closing date but on the very eve of the closing date I was still wrestling with words. I’d been on  a great course with Rose Flint at the my little home from home Ty Newydd, The Writers Centre for Wales near Criccieth this spring, so I hoped I had some idea of what kind of poetry she might be looking for as a judge, and as entries are judged anonymously I thought it would be great chance to put my theory to the test.  I especially liked the subject ‘Green Space’ because we had done some of our writing out of doors so I took pen to paper quite a few times including taking a rather wet but wonderful writing workshop in the woods with a local tutor Alison Weetman but between my busy life and monkey mind there I was blood, sweat and tears on the eve of the closing date, 3 hours before midnight, 2 hours… 10 minutes… no 9, at last uploading the results of my labour and trying to negotiate my way through PayPal, which I should have remembered I always get in a tangle with. I finally pressed send at 11.59 and a bit. 

I knew I wouldn’t be shortlisted for this one, in fact I didn’t expect to be anything, I felt I might have done better had I started even earlier so I was pleasantly surprised when Sue offered to publish my poem in the anthology.  

I have just checked and it is over a month since the competition opened so it’s about time I sorted out a submission or even two.  I enjoy Poetry Space and look forward to new content on the poetry pages; I have even shared a few of my own poems there. The judge this year is Cheryl Moskowitz another amazing poet and the entry fee helps fund Poetry Space website so I can’t think of a better reason to enter this particular competition.

 I believe that once we start to enter competitions it is helps us hone our editing skills, and it has certainly helped me grow in confidence.  So now the time has come to think seriously about writing something new for this year’s competition… now where’s my pen?

Karen Harvey

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