I got some frustrating news today. I've gotten conflicting answers from other bloggers on whether putting a poem or a book chapter on one's blog is considered "publishing." I decided to take it to one of the experts on the Writer's Digest site.
JCK : Is a poem considered published if it appears on a personal blog? Hi. I have heard various answers on this question, and thought it would be good to come directly to the source - editors of WD. I have recently begun submitting my poetry to magazines. I notice that some of them say that they cannot accept anything that has been published online in any form. Does this mean that if it appeared on a personal blog (small readership, but no password to enter), that it is considered published? Or are they referring to it appearing in an online form within another literary journal/magazine?
I also have several friends who are writing novels and posting sections/chapters of them on their blogs for reader feedback.
If the answer is YES, that poetry/prose appearing on a personal blog is considered published, I guess this means that I would have to consider self-publishing the work that I've already posted?
By and large, the answer is "Yes." Published means only that a given piece of work has, in any form, been made available to the general public. But it isn't about legal definitions. Editors of magazines do not usually want work that the readers of the magazine may already have read somewhere else. Why would they?
Posting a chapter or two of a novel is not the same thing as posting a complete novel, a complete poem, or a complete short story.
At the same time, be smart. Post things that have already been sold and published, not things you want to have published in the future.
I guess I'm not completely surprised by this answer, as I knew it was a possibility, but I am incredibly disappointed. I've worked very hard on my poems here, and it saddens me no end to think that they will die on my blog. Unless I create chap books or self-publish...
At this point, I will not be sharing the poems on my blog any longer that I want to submit for publishing consideration. Thanks SO MUCH to all of you for your support of my poetry and writing.
Published is Published!
If anyone can share any stories of publications that do accept work that has appeared online on a blog, previously, please leave a note in the comments.