Tag Archives: writing

Today is Author’s Day

On local radio today I learned that November 1st is National Author’s Day, https://www.daysoftheyear.com/days/authors-day/. I must confess to not having heard of this celebration until early this morning and being intrigued did a little digging which turned up the above link.

From the above, it appears that Author’s Day is an American celebration (it was certainly started in the USA). However given that it was mentioned on a (UK) local radio station, this celebration would appear to have crossed the Atlantic.

I would be interested to know whether any of my readers has any additional information regarding Author’s Day?

Kevin

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Bloggers and Echo Chambers

A blog is not a democracy, by which I mean that the blog owner has a right to determine it’s content, including whether to approve comments or whether to allow comments at all. As with one’s home, bloggers have the right to decide what is and is not acceptable. The home owner can decide that a guest expressing racist views should leave immediately, as, indeed can the website owner.

As a blog owner I endorse the right of site owners to run their sites as they see fit. If you don’t like the views being expressed and/or the other content of a blog (and the blog owner refuses to publish your perspective) you are at liberty to start your own site on which you can express whatever opinions you like (providing that you do not break the law by so doing). Having said that, I have always operated on the basis that a comment will be approved on my blog irrespective of whether or not the person commenting agrees with me on a given matter, provided that such disagreement is expressed in polite and measured terms. I don’t want newauthoronline.com to become an echo chamber in which only voices which mirror my own are heard. Such a place would lack vibrancy and I would not be comfortable running my blog on this basis. We can all learn from others perspectives and not permitting differing views leads, very quickly to a sterile environment. I won’t allow comments of a hateful nature (for example anyone who wishes to justify the Third Reich will find himself in my spam folder). However, other than such extreme instances I will publish all comments unless they are spammy in nature.

Some six months or so ago I commented on a post. My comment was not approved and the matter slipped to the back of my mind. I was therefore surprised on opening WordPress earlier today to see a response to my comment (the response not appearing on the site but being sent direct to me), in which I was accused of being “ignorant” and my comment having the potential to “hurt” the site’s readership. My comment was measured and politely expressed and so far as I can see the site owner’s refusal to publish it flowed entirely from the fact that they disagreed with my perspective. I am confirmed in this view by the fact that while the post in question had many comments, all of these where in total agreement with the views of the blog owner, in other words an echo chamber. As I say above, bloggers have the right to determine content, including whether or not to approve comments. However by only allowing comments which slavishly agree with their perspectives the site owner risks creating a tedious echo chamber. This maybe good for their ego but it is not good for free and open debate.

Kevin

Grime Music Star Stormzy To Help Young Writers Get Published

The Grime music star, Stormzy, has launched his own publishing brand, Murky Books, in collaboration with Penguin.

The aim of Murky Books is to help young writers to get published in a variety of genres, fiction, sci-fi and poetry.

To find out more please visit this link, https://news.sky.com/story/stormzy-to-help-young-writers-become-published-authors-with-penguin-11427689

Working Towards A Collection Of Poetry

Emma Lee has written a helpful post on producing a collection of poetry. Emma discusses the advantages and disadvantages of publishing a collection dealing with one theme VS producing a book containing a variety of themes.

Emma’s post caused me to ponder on my own writing and, in particular my collection of poetry, “My Old Clock I Wind”. The title of the book brings to mind both clocks and time more generally and there are, indeed a number of poems which deal with this subject matter. There are, however also poems which touch upon a variety of other issues, for example “Crack” which deals with addiction to hard drugs and “Count Dracula Went Out To Dine” (a poem of a more humorous nature). I deliberately chose to include poems on a multiplicity of themes on the basis that “variety is the spice of life”. I enjoy reading collections which cover various subjects and wishing to offer my readers the kind of collection that appeals to me, I took the decision to include a mixture of poems thereby (I hope) enhancing the enjoyment of my readers and avoiding the risk of being pigeonholed as the poet who only writes about time.

You can find Emma Lee’s post here, https://emmalee1.wordpress.com/2018/05/23/working-towards-a-collection-of-poems/.
“My Old Clock I Wind” is available from Moyhill Publishing and can be found here, http://moyhill.com/clock/. It is also available in the Amazon Kindle store, https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0735JBVBG

The Sword Of Damocles

Can the poet avoid the Sword of Damocles
Suspended above his head
By the thinnest thread?
His pleas
To those who he has offended
That he is merely speaking the truth
Will not prevent
The descent
Of sword from roof.

The poet’s curse
Is to write verse
That will
Sometimes chill
His readers to the heart.
They will traduce
Him for his art,
But the sword of truth
He must brandish high
Else he will die

Comments Are Closed

Several days ago, I did something which I have never done before.
I closed comments on this post, https://newauthoronline.com/2018/02/15/should-only-black-teachers-teach-black-children-about-slavery/.

I welcome comments on newauthoronline.com and did not take the above action lightly. My reasons for closing comments are as follows:

1. The post had attracted many comments (the majority of which emanated from one individual. I had, I believe engaged with the commenter extensively and answered their comments. We disagreed (which is absolutely fine), however I felt that the conversation was going around in ever decreasing circles and, it being obvious that we where engaged in a dialogue of the deaf I determined to close the post to comments.
2. My blog is, overwhelmingly concerned with my poetry. In contrast, the above post pertains to politics. Now I read history and politics at University College Swansea and remain fascinated by political issues. However it became apparent to me that continuing to engage in dialogue was distracting me from my writing. I always try to answer comments fully and a detailed comment deserves a substantive response – but not at the expense of my writing.

Will I write about matters of controversy in the future or confine myself purely to writing poetry? I will not shy away from tackling controversial issues here, however the main purpose of this site is to share my work and (hopefully) in the course of so doing to sell a few books. I will not allow other topics (however interesting) to distract me from my goal of composing poetry.

Kevin