Monday 5 August 2013

Interview with Editor Sandy Benitez


Sandy Benitez is the Editor of Flutter Press and Flutter Poetry Journal.  She's been nominated for The Pushcart Prize, Best of the Web, and Best of the Net.  Sandy resides in California with her husband & two children.


1.  Given the ways contemporary authors have been trying to compose all kinds of poetry, how would you define ‘poetry’? 

Poetry means so many different things to people, it would be impossible to give one definition to the art.  Poetry for me can include imagination, real life experiences, emotions, and ideas that are conveyed through words drawn with beautiful imagery and metaphor.

2.  Many people say poetry is dying. Do you agree or disagree with this statement, and why?  

I don't believe that poetry is dying at all.  I see it everyday on the internet; there are thousands of people from all over the world putting their poetry out there.  The exposure in the media isn't as great but online it's a vast community.  Maybe the networks should create some type of reality tv show about poets, "The Real Poets of (insert city here)."

3.  What are the most important makings of a ‘great’ poet? – please name 3 greatest poets the world has produced thus far. 

I'm not sure what makes a great poet.  Personally, I am drawn to poems that are unique and engaging with a haunting quality to them.  Some of the 3 greatest poets I admire are Pablo Neruda, Emily Dickinson, and Edgar Allan Poe.

4.  What are the most important or interesting things that you have you learned about poetry writing/publishing as a poetry editor?
Always give every poem a chance, that is, don't dismiss someone's work because you've never heard of them before.  I love to discover new poets and lucky for me I can do that because I'm an editor of a poetry journal.  Sometimes you will find a gem hidden in-between one submission.  It's good to read through submissions more than once.  Moods can alter your perceptions, one day you may be feeling blah and not so into reviewing.  Give it a day, then come back and re-read.  You would be surprised at how your perception can change.

5.  What is the most or least enjoyable part of being a poetry editor?  The most enjoyable is meeting new poets and discovering fabulous new poetry.  

The least enjoyable is when submitters don't follow the guidelines.  It causes more work from my end and more time spent trying to fix the problem.

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