Five Sections of Your Copy Guaranteed To Get Read

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Five Sections of Your Copy Guaranteed To Get Read

By: Karon Thackston

Only about 20% of your copy is going to get read. The rest will simply be scanned. I'm sure you've heard the statistic before. It's nothing new. While it might sound frightening or frustrating, it's a fact of copywriting life. So what do you do next? Give up? What difference does it make if only about 20% will be read anyway?

It makes a world of difference. Especially if you understand that there are some sections of your copy that are practically guaranteed to get read. If you know what these are and work to reinforce them, you'll see your conversions increase dramatically whether your copy is geared toward online or offline promotions.


Headlines have always been and will always be the most important section in any copy. They are the first thing to get read and have the greatest impact on whether any of the other copy gets read. Those stories you've seen floating around the Internet about marketers who have made minute changes to a headline and tripled their conversion rates are true. It happens all the time. In fact, it's happened to me.

Headlines and sub-headlines can guide your visitors to read deeper into your copy. If you set up a structure of progressive headlines (, you'll have a better shot getting your point across. Pay a lot of attention to your headline. It's the powerhouse of your copy.


Captions started with newspaper journalists. When they would run a picture with a story, they would add a few words underneath to explain what or who the picture was of. People got into the habit of looking for the captions in order to relate the importance of the image with the information they were receiving. This still holds true. Captions in advertising pieces are highly read. Don't waste the space!


When you scan something -- an article, a book, a newspaper, a magazine, a website -- what do you read? Almost everyone reads the first sentence of each paragraph. These sentences are vitally important in order to get your potential customers interested enough to keep reading. If you create exceptional first sentences, one of two things will happen. One: The prospect will be more likely to continue reading the copy. Two: The first sentences in each paragraph will be enough to convince him/her to buy.


Just as with the first sentence in each paragraph, people also almost always read the first entry in a bulleted list. If it hits home, they might keep reading. But, knowing that you have their attention for at least one second, always make sure your first bullet point is extremely powerful and enticing.


Writing a direct mail or Web sales letter? The PS is another hot spot. Take advantage of this real estate. Repeat offers, remind readers of bonuses, reinforce guarantees or recap limited-time offers. This section is the final pitch before your reader either acts or trashes your copy so make it count.

Have you noticed something about these five sections? Why do you think they are virtually guaranteed to get read in any piece of copy? They are unusual. They are limited. They stand out. They are eye-catching.

You only have a limited number of headlines and sub-heads in copy. They are almost always offset by bolding or underlining so they easily catch the eye of the reader. Captions only appear when there are images. They do not appear all throughout the copy. First sentences are also rare. Only one sentence in each paragraph can be the first one. This tells the reader to keep going or jump to another section that might be of more interest. First entries in bulleted lists are unusually formatted and catch the eye of the reader. PS's? There's only one, and since it's the last thing on the page, most often, it stands out too.

These rare elements give you five guaranteed shots at building curiosity, promoting benefits, generating interest and closing sales. If you haven't done it before, now is the time to review your copy to be sure you're making the most out of these opportunities.

by Karon Thackston Copyright 2005

About The Author

Karon Thackston is a veteran copywriting pro who specializes in SEO copy. Learn how to write SEO copy that impresses the engines and your visitors at Get more tips on incorporating keyphrases into your copy with Karon's latest e-report "How To Increase Keyword Saturation (Without Destroying the Flow of Your Copy)" at


Deriki 29.11.2009. 02:57

How to fix a scratched disk? I tried toothpaste for five minutes twice but it didn't work


Admin 29.11.2009. 02:57

How to Fix a Scratched CD
While compact discs (CDs) are remarkably durable, it?s nearly impossible to prevent scratches and scuffs from occurring from time to time. The resulting damage can be either a skip in your favorite music track or, in the case of data CDs, the loss of that spreadsheet you worked on for two weeks. Don?t despair ? repair! While commercial CD repair kits and CD refinishing machines are available, you may be able to repair the damage on your own with products you already have.

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[edit] Steps1.Clean the disc. Even if a CD isn?t actually scratched or scuffed, dust, oil, and other surface contaminants can prevent it from playing properly. Thus cleaning the disc should always be your first move.
?Run warm water over the damaged disc to remove dust.
?If there is stubborn dirt or grease on the disc, gently rub it with your finger while you are washing it, and use a gentle detergent or liquid soap (with the water) or rubbing alcohol (in place of water). Any time you rub or wipe a CD, you should do so by starting at or near the center of the disc and rubbing straight outward toward the edge to prevent further scratching.
?Shake the water off and let the disc air-dry (do not dry it with a towel or cloth, and don't sun-dry it either).
2.Try to play the disc. Many times a good cleaning is all that is needed. If, however, problems persist after cleaning, try to play the disc in a different CD player. Some players handle scratches better than others; computer CD drives and car stereos tend to be the best.
3.Burn a new disc. If you can get the CD to work in one CD player - especially your computer?s - but not in others, try burning a new disc. The CD burner on your computer may be able to read the CD well enough to produce a perfect copy. You may wish to try this even if the CD doesn?t play correctly on the computer.
4.Locate the scratch. Actually repairing the disc will be easier if you can figure out where the offending scratch is. Visually inspect the CD?s playing surface for scratches or scuffs. Scratches that run perpendicular to the CD?s spiral - that is, those that run generally from the center to the rim - may not affect playing at all, and in any case are generally less damaging than those that roughly follow the direction of the spiral. If there are several scratches, but the CD only skips in one or two places, you may be able to approximate the location of the offending scratches based on which track skips. The first track of a CD begins near the center, and the direction of play proceeds outward to the edge.
5.Data Recovery. Many burning programs can be set to continue reading after getting an error (such as not being able to read a section due to a scratch). If the program can't read a section at all, it will fill it with random data. They can also try to read the bad section by reading at a very slow speed multiple times. For windows, Nero does this, linux has the ddrescue tool. This can often fix damaged cds, and is especially effective with audio cds (where accuracy isn't as important). Also, this doesn't risk damaging the cd (like the following methods), so it is a good idea to try this before trying the more drastic methods. If they damage the disk, the data recovered by this method can still be used. Note that due to the slow reading, and multiple attempts at trying to read a damaged section, these programs can take a very long time to complete (a windows xp disk recovered with this method took about 2 hours).
6.Polish the CD. WARNING: this can damage the disk further! Use only as a last resort, and read the instructions carefully!! Though counter-intuitive, polishing a disc can repair a scratched CD by removing some of the outer plastic coating and thus making existing scratches shallower. A number of common household products can be used to polish the CD, but toothpaste ? especially baking soda toothpaste ? and Brasso are probably the most tried and true. You can also use a fine-grit polishing compound that's used for cars or hard finishes.
?Apply a small amount of toothpaste (must be paste, not gel) or Brasso to a soft, clean, lint-free (old undershirt) cloth: an eyeglass-cleaning cloth works well.
?Gently rub the cloth on the scratch or scuff in a radial motion, (start at the center and rub out to the edge, like spokes on a wheel). Do this 10 or 12 times all around the CD. Rubbing in a circular motion can cause small scratches that throw off the laser tracking system in the player. Try to f


peterson 13.06.2007. 23:42

does any one know any good books on synesthesia? im 15 and very interested but all the books i try to read are full of huge words and stuff i dont understand do you have any suggestions for easyer learning?


Admin 13.06.2007. 23:42

Try Diane Ackerman's A NATURAL HISTORY OF THE SENSES. Some say she's annoying because she claims to be an expert on scientific/natural things, but I disagree; I think she does a terrific job of taking scientific jargon and transforming it into sentences anyone can read. She also cites her sources, so she's certainly not claiming to be an expert herself.

So anyway, the book is divided into sections; each section handles one of the five senses. When writing about smell, Ackerman explores why people sneeze, the desensitizing chemicals in violets, pheromones, a perfumer who's made some of the most famous designer scents. So within each section, there's a ton of information about the particular "sense," and at the end of the book there's another section on synesthesia. Each of the sections are divided up into tiny little subcategories, all titled, so you can easily read a page or two here and there, depending on what you're interested in. I guarantee you'll enjoy the read.

Here's a little snippet from the Synesthesia section:

"While synesthesia drives some people to distraction, it drives distractions away from others. While it is a small plague to the person who doesn't want all that sensory overload, it invigorates those who are indelibly creative. Some of the most famous synesthetes have been artists. Composers Aleksandr Scriabin and Nikolai Rimski-Korsakov both freely associated colors with music when they wrote. To Rimski-Korsakov, C major was white; to Scriabin it was red. To Rimski-Korsakov, A major was rosy, to Scriabin it was green. More surprising is how closely their music-color synesthesias matched. Both associated E major with blue...."

I'm sure you can get this book at your public library--they'll probably have about ten copies.


Doitsanna 19.07.2013. 01:21

PSAT Reading comprehension tips? I am perfectly fine with the math portion; I have always scored at least higher scores than ~90% sophomores. But the problem is reading comprehension. It's not awful, I suppose; I score among ~50% at the lowest, but I definitely need to bring it up, now that I am a sophomore. The main thing that gets me, I think, is the fact my head goes amok with the thought of a timed test. I have practiced timing myself; first giving myself about five extra minutes, then slowly reducing that extra time, but any other tips would be appreciated. Thank you! :-)


Admin 19.07.2013. 01:21

This is the advice that I give to people for the SAT Critical Reading section. The PSAT has the exact same types of questions as the SAT, so you can still apply these tips to your PSAT preparation (except maybe for the first tip; that is more for SAT preparation, but I suppose you could still do the questions for practice.)

The Critical Reading section is probably the most difficult section to improve upon out of all the sections, even for those whose first language is English. While different methods work for different people, I can give you some tips that worked for me:

-Do many practice tests and make sure to go over your mistakes. Obtain a copy of the College Board's Official SAT Study Guide if you have not already done so. It contains tips, exercises, and information about each section of the test. Most importantly, it has 10 official practice tests. As you keep doing practice tests, you will eventually get used to the questions and passages, and your reasoning and inference skills will noticeably improve.

-This may seem rather obvious, but if an answer cannot be found in the passage, then it is not correct. Make sure that you can support your answers with information from the passage. This is advice that everyone thinks he/she knows but ultimately disregards during the test.

-I always read the entire passage first, then answer the questions. With double passages, I always read both passages completely before answering the questions. Reading the passage(s) first will prime you for the questions, as you will probably understand the context of the questions better after reading the passage(s).

-Vocabulary/Sentence Completions: This section is one that people either love or hate, a section that can either provide 19 free points (on the SAT; I do not know how many there are on the PSAT, but I believe that there are fewer of them) or damage one's score. If you have a lot of time, then READ. Read advanced articles and novels and see if you can pick up some of the vocabulary. If you do not have much time, you could resort to word lists (like Barron's), but there is absolutely no guarantee that the words you study will appear on the test. You should also study word roots, which can potentially be very useful in deducing the meaning of a word from its parts (e.g.: circumlocute: circum=around, loc=talk, circumlocute=to talk around the main point or use too many words to get to your point.) Do not underestimate the usefulness of word roots; they can serve as crucial guides in otherwise hopeless situations.

-Sentence completions may not necessarily test your knowledge of esoteric words (like esoteric), but instead may test your ability to notice a word in different parts of speech and/or contexts. For example, "affect" can be a verb or a noun; as a verb, its meaning corresponds to "influence", but as a noun, it is an emotional air or manner.

I hope this advice helps.


applebottomerotic 05.05.2008. 19:39

Is this a rare book?
I bought a book about ghost stories. There is a problem with the book. For the first 18 pages the book is fine but then the font chages and the rest of book is about sweets (about 400 pages). I got real mad and was about to return it when my friend said that I could sell it as a rare book. Does this count at rare book and can I get any money for it?
Where can I get the book appraised?


Admin 05.05.2008. 19:39

DES MOINES, IA, United States (UPI) -- Some young readers who bought hot-off-the-presses copies of the fantasy novel "Eldest" have found immediate frustration and a future collector's item.

The book by Christopher Paolini is a sequel to his best-selling "Eragon" and is so hot it is outselling Harry Potter. But the Des Moines Register reports about 1 percent of Random House's 1.3 million-copy first run were printed with 32 pages mistakenly replaced by a section from the upcoming Cornelia Funke novel "Inkspell."

Stuart Applebaum, a Random House spokesman, said only a few thousand of the bungled copies made their way to bookstores, mostly in New York and New Jersey. He said anyone who got one can get a free replacement, but individual storeowners must decide if customers have to turn in the defective one.

Applebaum told the newspaper he can understand why buyers might decide to keep "something that is the equivalent of a dollar bill with the wrong insignia."

Back to me: There's more....The publisher actually notified book merchants that defective copies might affect 1.6%?3% of the initial print run, with some copies missing pages 237?268, in addition to the error you mentioned above. As well, there have been reports that some customers had returned books that were missing the first 13 pages of the otherwise 704-page book.

Okay - so you're talking anywhere from 10-30K books out of an initial print run of 1.3 million with future prints pretty much guaranteed. Yep - I'd keep it. By the way, since most of the misprints showed up in New York or New Jersey with just a few in Iowa - where did you get yours? Maybe you can tell me in your feedback...

By the way, just because the publisher will give you a free exchange if you wish to get a complete copy - you've also got the option to buy another copy and keep your misprint for future investment's speculative investment, of course, but wouldn't you just hate to find out five years down the road your returned book was fetching prices well above what you paid?

Good luck and good reading - thanks for a great question...


My Precious 07.09.2009. 02:49

How to they do it????????? Authors. It takes me forever to think of an idea then auctaly try to plan it out. I usally quit writing and it stays in my computer for 2 months b4 I get back to it. Again not finishing it. And then theres these authors like Danile Steel who make 2 books a month. How do they do it?

My Precious

Admin 07.09.2009. 02:49

Two things:

Authors like Danielle Steel or those who (generally speaking; this doesn't apply to everyone) come out with a book more often than babies come out of the womb are known as pulp writers. Essentially, they pick out a certain plot- for Nora Roberts, this always involves a woman with a somewhat difficult past going back to her childhood home; for Mary Higgins Clark, it's always someone who's being haunted by his or her past, a dark, dark past- and all of their books are about that. If you'll notice, their plots are all the same. Furthermore, they aren't exactly winning Pulitzer Prizes. They aren't phenomenally well-written books. They're written because the author is well-known, is guaranteed to sell up to a million copies, can top the bestseller lists, and have a devoted collection of fans.

There's nothing really awful about this, but it's very generic, mainstream, not art. Don't worry about not being able to put out the work like they do- it's all very much like a factory for them, no real love in it, and I'm pretty sure that their editors are the ones who are naming the five or six books that they receive from them daily! :D

Real artists don't focus on spitting out something to hit the shelves. They craft works of art. Did you know that it took Marcel Proust about two decades to craft In Search of Lost Time? And it's a classic, whereas if you put out something so quick, it gets forgotten. Real art takes time to thicken, to deepen. Harry Potter, for example, took seventeen years to write and it's estimated (from what I've read), that Shakespeare put out about a play a year.

You're in excellent company.

Second thing:

If you really need help coming up with ideas, go to the library, walk around the nonfiction section and pull out a book on any topic. It can be something random, like botany, ancient Rome or modern day Ireland. Go as random as you can. Try and imagine a day in those places or a day dealing with those subjects. Or, go to a museum and look at paintings. Check out paintings by Salvador Dali or someone else who is bizarre and interesting. Surely you'll be hit by something. Also, sometimes, for some people, and judging by your brief description, yourself included, planning can actually be a bad thing. It stunts the creative process. Just sit down (and stay there) and write something.

Good luck and ignore the pulp writers. You'll do well. Maybe I'll see your book on a shelf someday. :D


domino 11.01.2009. 05:34

i need child labor sections for the jungle by upton sinclair.? Array


Admin 11.01.2009. 05:34

Your library has five copies, I guarantee it. It'll take less than one day to read if you actually sit down and read it.


Oscar C 20.02.2009. 00:28

The price of cathexis is pain?..? ?A full life will be full of pain. But the only alternative is not to live fully or not to live at all. The essence of life is change, a panoply of growth and decay. Elect life and growth, and you elect change and the prospect of death.?

I read these (I am sure from a book) in an herb shop selling a wonder herb drink in an alcoholic medium (so no expiry date) guaranteeing a ?cure? for all kinds of diseases, including cancer. What book the statement comes from? Who is the author?

Oscar C

Admin 20.02.2009. 00:28

If you are in a fix for an answer, you simply google, wiki, or best to yahoo it to hopefully get the answer. But I had the advantage because I always associated a few years back the word ?cathexis? with the new psychology of love author Dr. Scott Peck, the writer of the book ?The Different Drum.?

Searching further, I found the answer: The statement comes from the book, ?The Road Less Traveled? by Dr. M. Scott Peck, M.D. on Page 133 in a Paperback Edition, published by Simon & Shuster, a Touchstone Book.

The Road Less Traveled, published in 1978, is Peck's best-known work, and the one that made his reputation. It is, in short, a description of the attributes that make for a fulfilled human being, based largely on his experiences as a psychiatrist and a person.

In the first section of the work Peck talks about discipline, which he considers essential for emotional, spiritual and psychological health, and which he describes as "the means of spiritual evolution". The elements of discipline that make for such health include the ability to delay gratification, accepting responsibility for oneself and one's actions, a dedication to truth and balancing.

In the second section, Peck considers the nature of love, which he considers the driving force behind spiritual growth. The section mainly attacks a number of misconceptions about love: that romantic love exists (he considers it a very destructive myth), that it is about dependency, that true love is not "falling in love". That type of love is cathexis, it is a feeling. Instead "true" love is about the extending of one's ego boundaries to include another, and about the spiritual nurturing of another, in short, love is effort.

The final section describes Grace, the powerful force originating outside human consciousness that nurtures spiritual growth in human beings. To do so he describes the miracles of health, the unconscious, and serendipity?phenomena which Peck says:

nurture human life and spiritual growth
are incompletely understood by scientific thinking
are commonplace among humanity
originate outside conscious human will
He concludes that "the miracles described indicate that our growth as human beings is being assisted by a force other than our conscious will".

Random House, where the little-known psychiatrist first tried to publish his original manuscript, turned him down, saying the final section was "too Christ-y." Simon & Schuster published the work for $7,500 and printed a modest hardback run of 5,000 copies. The book took off only after Mr. Peck hit the lecture circuit and personally sought reviews in key publications. Reprinted in paperback in 1980, The Road first made best-seller lists in 1983 ? five years after its initial publication.


Joss 01.09.2010. 00:28

Do you need help developing characters? I just got this in the (e)mail from and it gives some tips on how to develop your characters. I'll post it here in case you don't want to click on the link and the link is provided in the additions section. It's a good website, you should check it out if you haven't already.

I already do the first tip and I'll definitely try the other three to see how it works out.

Also, what are some tips that you have that helps you develop your characters?

1. Make a character study for each of your characters, defining the five traits discussed here: name, age, appearance, relationships and personality.

2. With a clean copy of your manuscript, get out a different colored highlighter for each character. Go through the manuscript one character at a time. Highlight whenever that character speaks and/or acts. If you try to do too many characters at the same time, shifting from one color to the other, I guarantee you will make a mistake at least once.

3. Now read only the dialogue and actions of one of those colors. Does everything your character says sound true to her? What about her actions? If not, rewrite the passages that seem forced.

4. Did you notice one character, or maybe several, who appear in the beginning but not in the end, or vice versa? If so, they probably aren?t necessary to your story. Try deleting them or perhaps combining them with another character.


Admin 01.09.2010. 00:28

1. is a little too OCD for my tastes, but I imagine it'd help some people.

2. and 3. seem like useful tips for making a character's character constant. Still, some characters flip between personalities or change towards the end.

I completely disagree with 4., though. There are many times when a character that is introduced partway through the story or leaves around then (possibly killed off) plays a very vital role in the plot.

One thing I've always noticed with my characters is that, if you have a program like The Sims, it helps if you model them out, to see what they would look like. Also, I try to step into the shoes of my characters, even having mock conversations with them in my head. Almost like a job interview, I see if they're perfect for what I need them for.


coryman00 11.10.2009. 20:42

What are the laws both Federal and state regarding Min. Wage? Should i Pursue this further? who can help me? Section 5: Exemptions to Min. Wage/Part(c)

(1) Notwithstanding the provisions of section 4(a)(7) and (8), an employer unless otherwise exempt from the minimum wage provisions of section 4(a)(6) whose employe complement is composed of the equivalent of ten or less full-time employes to be calculated on a forty-hour workweek shall pay:
(i) Five dollars sixty-five cents ($5.65) an hour beginning January 1, 2007.
(ii) Six dollars sixty-five cents ($6.65) an hour beginning July 1, 2007.
(2) Such employer shall pay the full amount of the minimum wage under section 4(a)(8) beginning July 1, 2008.
(5 amended July 9, 2006, P.L.1077, No.112)

My Comments:

All employees were told that this is why we were only payed $5.65 an hour. The Employers-Melissa Ansell (General Manager) & Beau Hill (Owner) went as far as posting this statuate on the billboard next to the employees schedule as reason for our wages. However part (ii) & (2) were removed when posted. The highlighted area is all that was shown to the employees

Section 8: Duties of the Employer

Every employer of employes shall keep a true and accurate record of the hours worked by each employe and the wages paid to each, and shall furnish to the secretary or his or her duly authorized representative, upon demand, a sworn statement of the same. Such records shall be open to inspection by any duly authorized representative of the secretary at any reasonable time and shall be preserved for a period of three years. Every employer subject to this act shall keep a summary of this act and any regulations issued thereunder applicable to him or her, posted in a conspicuous place where employes normally pass and can read it. Employers shall, upon request, be furnished copies of such summaries without charge. Employers shall permit any duly authorized representative of the secretary to interrogate any employe in the place of employment and during work hours with respect to the wages paid to and the hours worked by such employe or other employes.

My Comments:

1st - the poster that is located at both the richland and moxham locations are 10+ years outdated.
2st - when employess asked to see the laws and regulations regarding minimum wage, we would receive answers via
"post it" notes or answers written by the general manager/owner posted on the dry erase board. we were consistently
denied any and all information regarding the Min. wage laws and regulations

Section 12: Penalties (a)

Any employer and his or her agent, or the officer or agent of any corporation, who discharges or in any other manner discriminates against any employe because such employe has testified or is about to testify before the secretary or his or her representative in any investigation or proceeding under or related to this act, or because such employer believes that said employe may so testify shall, upon conviction thereof in a summary proceeding, be sentenced to pay a fine of not less than five hundred dollars ($500) nor more than one thousand dollars ($1,000), and in default of the payment of such fine and costs, shall be sentenced to imprisonment for not less than ten days nor more than ninety days

My Comments:

on 6/15/09 i started attending classes at Cambria-Rowe Business College. I made my Employer (Dominos Pizza) aware of this in hopes of recieving a more flexible schedule. After speaking with Melissa Ansell (GM) she granted me special hours to guarantee the job would not interfere with my classes. From there on i NEVER worked before 3:30 p.m or after
12:30 a.m on a day that i had classes. The week of September 13th-20th, there several discussions between myself and several other employees regarding min. wage laws and regulations. I made a statement that i might make a couple calls to the labor dept. regarding min. wage laws and regulations.

On monday 9/21/09 i was to work at the moxham location from 4 p.m to 10 p.m. After getting to work i was told by Jorge Sanchez (Assistant Manager) that a Driver called off at there Richland location (20 minutes from moxham). I was then forced to travel to the Richland location to work. i worked until 10:30 p.m then asked Bryant Williams (GM) when i could go home. he stated that i would be there until closing. On the door outside it says that they close at 12 a.m on a monday. However, the (GM) told me that he woud not close until 1 a.m possibly later if it's busy. Being that he had made up his mind that we would close at 1 a.m and then we had to close the store and clean up which can take up to an hour, and the 30 minute ride to my residence it would clearly be b/w 2:30 a.m & 3:00 a.m before i got home.
at 11:30 the GM called Joshua Hillman (Driver) in to cover for me, so i could leave on time. after Josh Hillman arrived and clocked in and replaced me, i then clocked out and went home.
Tuesday 4 p.m - i was to work from 4 p.m to 12 a.m in moxham. upon arriving i was told i was


Admin 11.10.2009. 20:42

Yeah, you should try to find a lawyer. Assuming you were going to say you were fired, you appear to have a prima facie case for retaliatory discharge in violation of public policy. Your damages probably won't be great, but I bet there's a fee shifting provision in the law, which means they'll have to pay your attorney. Contact your local bar association, get a referral.


Rebe 12.02.2008. 22:48

If you know answer please!!!? I write poems and I want to know how can I show them?, so in that way people can give their opinions in my computer, and if I want to publish them, any idea to where I can begin??? Thanks.


Admin 12.02.2008. 22:48

Let me tell it to you like it is. This isn't going to be what you want to hear, but sit down and read because this is going to take a while. I know what I am talking about. I talk with a Senior Editor at a top two publishing house every single day. I know the business inside and out.

There is very little poetry being published today. Major publishers are not publishing it at all, and therefore agents aren't reading it. There is no sense since they cannot sell it. I don't know of an agent in NY these days reading poetry. It would be a waste of their time. There is no place for them to sell it.

You may have a shot with small literary presses. I know one woman who got a small literary press to publish her poetry book about a year ago. It has sold 11 copies and ten of them were to her. That is about average. And a lot of those small presses are frauds and on the verge of bankruptcy. You have to be very careful. Check anybody out at Preditors and Editors and Absolute Write Water Cooler's Bewares and Background Checks before you send them anything.

Do you live near a large bookstore? Prove it to yourself. Go in and look for the poetry section. After you dust off the cobwebs, count the number of books there. Not very many. Now, walk over and count the number of books under New Fiction. Probably about 100 times more titles.

I am glad you are positive about your work, but poetry is not a huge seller. Bookstores have to pay rent, and shelf space means money to them. It costs them money. So therefore, they have to stock books that sell big enough to pay their rent and earn them a profit. And poetry books do not do that. Thrillers do. Young Adult books do. Romance novels do.

Just so you know. The Poet Laureate of the United States recently published a five line poem in a magazine for which he received the princely sum of 25 bucks. 5 bucks a line. So if the Poet Laureate got 5 bucks a line, you would be lucky to get 5 bucks a poem - if that. There is just too many sites for free poetry out there. People do not buy it anymore.

Lastly, posting work online is almost a sure guarantee that no publisher will publish you. It is simply too expensive for them to put their law team on the case of tracking down actual ownership of the work. The internet is a plagiarists' playground. The only copyright that is foolproof is writing, backing up, and showing to nobody.



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