. . . a note of gratitude to each of you.
Today I draw attention to the third anniversary for “One Poet’s Notes,” this venue that has served as the editor’s blog for Valparaiso Poetry Review. Begun on January 11, 2007, as an author’s personal notebook or writer’s journal that also presents commentary on contemporary poetry, complementing content published in VPR, the blog has been intended as a source of news and additional information relating to poetry, poetics, or various aspects of other arts.
The format of the blog has permitted me to present readers ongoing access to numerous notable sources for poetry or background about poets, especially with links to various media, including recordings of poetry readings and interviews, as well as selected videos relating to poetry and poetics. At the same time, a number of the entries have allowed me to personalize my role as editor, offering more informal opinion and analysis that might assist authors wishing to contribute to Valparaiso Poetry Review by giving a glimpse into my approach when examining poetry books or considering submissions for the journal.
The past year has been a remarkable one that has seen celebration of a tenth anniversary for Valparaiso Poetry Review with the current special issue. Even as VPR entered its eleventh year and has continued to witness a greatly increased readership, partially due to the presence of “One Poet’s Notes,” I further recognized an obligation to reintroduce readers—through retrospective articles and the Poem of the Week feature—to works that were published in previous years and are still available in the periodical’s archives.
When I first posted entries at “One Poet’s Notes” three years ago, I had no idea how many individuals might find their way to the blog. Indeed, I remember being delighted that as many as 500 readers visited in the blog’s first month. I am even more amazed that the statistics now show an average of about 15,000 visits to articles at “One Poet’s Notes” each month. Consequently, this as well has enhanced the number of visits to pages of Valparaiso Poetry Review’s twenty-one issues published thus far to a total of more than 450,000 for just the past three years of stats kept during the blog’s existence.
As I have noted in the past, this increase in readership has been assisted by recognition and respect generously demonstrated by others, including the excellent authors whose works are represented in the pages of VPR and the many friendly fellow bloggers who have pointed their readers in this direction with recommendations of the content found here. Therefore, I especially would like to take this opportunity to thank those throughout the literary community for their support of “One Poet’s Notes.” In a time when the print sources for commentary on literature, especially poetry, have diminished significantly, as evidenced lately in the abandonment of book review sections by some newspapers and the demise of some print magazines, the literary blog has become a welcome addition to further discussions of literature and the writing process.
I have been honored and very happy to recognize specific works from Valparaiso Poetry Review’s recent issues by nominating them publicly on “One Poet’s Notes” for selection to various “Best of” collections (Best of the Net, Best of the Web, and the Pushcart Prize anthologies) and to see some of them chosen for inclusion. As I have said a few times in this blog, I am pleased when an opportunity arises to share the work of VPR’s poets with a larger audience and enable their poems to receive the greater recognition they deserve.
When “One Poet’s Notes” began in 2007, I encouraged readers to subscribe for RSS feeds through Google Reader or elsewhere. In 2008, I started the Valparaiso Poetry Review Facebook group page, global and open to all who wish to receive regular reports on news about Valparaiso Poetry Review, as well as instant notification when new issues of VPR are released. This past year, the addition of Twitter updates has enhanced notification possibilities and increased readership even more. Again, I urge readers to take advantage of the convenience these various features offer.
Deciding to experiment with an editor’s blog and writing my first few casual comments in “One Poet’s Notes” three years ago, submitting those less formal words for public viewing, I could not anticipate what would occur in the future. I certainly could not foresee that direction the blog would take to where it is today, now approaching its 500th post.
Thank you, once more, to all who repeatedly have been readers of “One Poet’s Notes.” I hope you will continue to return regularly to discover entertaining and enlightening entries. I again express my appreciation, and I offer a note of gratitude to each of you.