Sunday, 9 January 2011
Allpoetry.com is GAY.
After the unexplained demise of Urbis.com, I needed a new place online to get feedback on creative writing. I wanted a site like Urbis- free, and with good constructive criticism to help me fine-tune the lit I'm sending out to places. A Google search took me to Allpoetry.com.
The design of the site is great. The user uploads a profile, uploads writing and decides how their page should look using a range of backgrounds. Each poem they upload can also be altered to suit, with interchangeable background and text colours.
To gain reviews, as is the norm on these sites, first you've got to give them. I got cracking and fired a load of reviews out. As one of my pieces is an erotic poem, I hammered the Erotica category to see what others were doing. I wasn't bowled over. The poems themselves were okay, but not of the calibre I'd expect in any lit magazines. I gave most poets the “compliment sandwich”- open with praise, constructively criticise, close with praise. Yes, I have lifted the phrase from Family Guy. More details on this here:
However, I don't really know what I'm doing with poetry. I joined the site to learn. The way to learn how to write is to accept criticism. That way, you know what to improve. It might sound like I'm stating the obvious, but I was the only reviewer on Allpoetry offering criticism. Every review I saw was nothing but shallow ego-stroking.
“Wow! That wz realli nice! :)”
I asked a question in the site's forum- why is nobody criticising each other?
A member replied that there's a Poetry for Revision section for those hoping to improve their work.
What's the point in there only being a section? What do you stand to gain from NOT being criticised?
Regardless, I had a browse around the revision section- the reviews offered are visible to all under the uploaded poems. They still weren't that explicit. So no, I'm afraid I won't be using allpoetry.com again. If anyone knows of any effective writing sites that are free- and that will push writers into being better poets- by all means, comment below.