Alrighty, I have a question for you writers and aspiring writers out there or indeed anyone who knows how to make sense out of nonsense. (Not me obviously.)
Why is it, when I look around the web, that poets seem to be paid more than prose writers? For example, I just looked at one website where the fee for a poem is £25 and a prose writer is £15 per thousand words. Now I don't want to dispute the fact that any piece of writing poetry or prose takes some creativity and any numbers of hours to write. However, a poem might only be three lines, is probably likely to a "filler" and not likely to be a key feature unless it is written specifically for a poetry magazine. Further, I would suggest poetry requires little or no research as it usually contains emotional sentiments rather than facts and figures whereas the research for some articles can take ages. Or, in my case, a whole sitting on the lavatory.
So how do you balance the worthiness, financial or otherwise, of one form of writing over another?
Now I've tried my hand at poetry. It is not easy to be succinct in a few words. However, I wrote this one in about 20 mins ( I know, the quality is debatable... but then again so is a lot of published poetry!) Whereas, the majority of my for articles for The View From Here have required extensive research -for example for my Damon Galgut article I read all six of his novels! Now that might be overdoing the research somewhat - but whilst I'm quite happy to talk out my backside on my blog I wouldn't dream of talking out of it elsewhere. (Well most of the time anyway.)
Of course, it pretty much goes without saying that all writers are underpaid. Unless you get to be as successful as Dan Brown or J K Rowling you'd better get used to bread and dripping. I'm just grateful Mr T has a job and I can flirt with writing - if I actually had to make a living at it I would probably have stuffed my head in the cooker by now or died a dramatic death by first cutting off my ears, then shaving my head and finally jumping off London Bridge reciting The Ancient Mariner.
So any thoughts anyone?
Oh, out of interest one of my popular posts is my short story Caught Short. I leave it to your imagination the phrases input into Google that have made that one so popular! Let's just say that should my recent literary endeavours fall short, I have a future in "contemporary" literature.