I just wrote a post for Critical Margins about three apps that can make you a better, faster, and stronger writer. If you’re interest, you know what to do.
Here’s some poems I wrote about not knowing how to explain what Russian ballerinas do, working at an Oklahoma oil refinery, and the songs of sea turtles. Maybe you’ll like them.
I’m not E. L. James, J.K. Rowling, or even Stephen King. Sorry. I haven’t yet signed a contract for my debut book of poetry “Songs to Sing in a Getaway Car.” But I have published 50 poems, numerous essays and blog posts, albums, a comic book with Matt Kindt, and a few apps with Dan McKenzie in the past couple of years, not to mention the dozens of press releases that turned into stories about. So I have been up to something. After this interview at Squalorly (http://www.squalorly.com/interview/discussion-jason-braun) people have started asking me about how to get published. Here is the short answer: Read deeply in the subject you want to write, write a lot, then submit a lot.
If you are convinced, then go do it now! If you are angry or bored I hope you have a great day anyway. If you’d like an explanation, then we’ll keep going.
As some of you know I have dyslexia and ADD. Spelling doesn’t come naturally to me. Yet editors, publishers, and readers like to read words spelled correctly. This is one of the reasons I created homophonecheck.com with Dan McKenzie’s help. When I’m writing poems I tune into the sounds of words so much so that spelling goes out the window.
Homophones can make a poem more interesting, yet when it is written down as opposed to being recited, the poet has to choose which word he or she wants to use primarily. The point is: check your spelling. Most of what I’ve published has been looked over by someone else. Sometimes the editors at the magazines catch an error and like the poem enough to correct it. I’ve got a few publishing credits though. They probably wouldn’t read something all the way through if I was just starting out and had jacked up spelling. This is the small stuff. If you need an editor check out one of these two guys, I vouch for them:
Kevin Eagan at http://kevinthomaseagan.com/
Andrew Doty at http://www.editwright.com/
The real key is to submit a massive of work! I’m talking about the power of large numbers. In the past two year’s I’ve submitted over a hundred packets of poems to various places. Submitting a massive amount of work is easier when you have a lot of poems. I’ve been writing a poem a day for over two years now.
You might say, well it is easy to submit a lot of poems if you have a lot of them. What’s stopping you from doing this? Who among us can’t fit time in their day to write a haiku?
Some days all I write is a haiku. I’m not looking down on the haiku. A lot of times it ends up a better poem than one I labor over for hours. Every day I’m checking in. Everyday I’m reminding myself that yes, I am a writer. Today I have over 822 poems totaling (72,727 words) that aren’t in my manuscript or published individually. I haven’t sent many of these ones out yet. But this starts with writing just one.
I thought I’d need to do more smoozing and handshaking. But I’ve published very little through that method. Not that it couldn’t work. To be honest, the fact that I am (or was) an Editor at Sou’wester (http://souwester.org/) helped tremendously. For one, it gave me a little credibility. Also I read a hell of a lot of unpublished poems about barns, penises, Thor, and even hate-filled Nazi collage pieces. I have an idea what an editor might look for. But I get a lot of rejections.
If you still want to know more about publishing check out my friend Jane Friedman’s blog. http://janefriedman.com/blog/
Here’s a I wrote poem about giving smart, strong-willed, beautiful women enough space to coexist, cohabitate, and the other good stuff. It’s easy to do this in a poem. Life, not so much. Here are also hummingbirds, buzzards, and sharks in this poem. You might like it.
is ready for you at Jersey Devil Press
The good people at Squalorly know a thing or two about making people talk. Seth Piccolo and Kristina Pepelko cornered me on my way home from church (yeah right). They roughed me up, put some drinks in me, and started asking some questions. I let the whole cat out of the bag on this one, see.
Thanks to the great people at the Lowestoft Chronicle, I just received my first Pushcart Prize nomination for the poem below!
Just incase you’re still thinking twice about clicking the link, I tell you a bit about the poem. It is called “Time Dilation Case Study” and it has the usual features like Nikola Tesla, the CIA, geo arbitrage, Belize, reggae, the AAA, and turtles all the way down.
Sure maybe it’s a little egotistical to say first, implying that there will be many. But if you are offended, chances are you might not be a fan of my emphatic style anyway. I’ll still say thanks for stopping by!
And one of them is kinda sexy
Provocative title and all, this post of mine just went up at critical margins.
If you haven’t been by codecademy, you might want to stop by there first.
I’ve moved to Macomb, IL to teach full time as a member of the English faculty at Western Illinois University. If you happen to be in the area on October third, please come by the reading in the University Art Gallery. I’ll have CDs, jokes, and smiles for everybody. And I’ll do my best to keep it from becoming too serious.
You can read it at: www.cgu.edu/foothill
or listen right here:
But I understand if you’re busy.
It’s strange. Valerie Vogrin pointed out to me that these are such small poems written in response to such large paintings and murals. But I think the people in Rivera’s painting are of few words.
One of them contains a reference to an old John Cusack movie? Know the name of the movie? The first person to email me with the correct title gets 10,000 points, or a free Jason and the Beast CD.
A well-traveled poem of mine about Guatemala, the people you meet in hostels, and avocados just went up at Outside In Magazine.
I wouldn’t be mad or anything if you clicked on the link to check it out.
Find out how Author’s can get in on some of that Maker action!
Here’s a very short and maybe even funny poem that just got published today-
Corey Stevens had this to say:
Their is going to be a new way to edit your class assignments online. Or is it they’re? There?
Jason Braun, an English composition teacher at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville, has released the world’s first homophone checker. Homophones are words that sound alike, but are spelled differently, and cause a lot of confusion for many beginning writers.
Read more at:
It’s about Zombies, Matt Kindt, and the Future of the Book .
By JAMIE FORSYTHE — News-Democrat
A Southern Illinois University Edwardsville graduate student has created a website application to help other dyslexic students like himself. Jason Braun, 35, of Edwardsville recently launched an online “homophone” checker.
A homophone refers to words that sound the same, but are spelled differently, and Braun’s web application, http://www.homophonecheck.com, allows writers to proofread for errors that word processing software can’t find.
For example, spell checking a document won’t find an error if you use ‘there’ instead of ‘their’ or ‘they’re’ or ‘know’ instead of ‘no.’