Run on lines…

No, not those ones. Dear lord, what a terrible idea. Although, we are nearly finished with Narcos Mexico.
(That said, might try this in the new year.)

No, I’ve been thinking as I look at my stats for the year that there’s some sort of link between my running this year and my writing. Correlation isn’t causation, etc and I don’t have the charts to hand (the wherewithal to tally up each month to make the chart),but I know that up to June this year I finished 10 poems and was roughly averaging 40-50k a week, and between July and now I’ve finished 5 poems and am averaging about 20K a week.

I’ve also run less overall. Last year it was 1600K, this year it’s just over 1500. I was aiming for 2000K, but

I think the reason behind these declines are that I was up a lot earlier in the first half of the year, and using the time after the runs to work on poems. I was training for Race To The King, and when folks mentioned I’d be struggling for motivation after that I didn’t believe them. How right they were. A combination of injury before the race, and exhaustion after has left me struggling to get back into the right frame of mind. It’s been the same with writing, the mad kick bollock scramble of the second half of 2021 has just left me with no interest in picking up a pen. I have no doubt it will come back. I can see a draft I started a coupe of weeks ago staring at me and I know I want to get to it, so I have faith.

However, in classic case of never mind the quality, feel the width it’s not been a bad year.

My submissions rate is up
My acceptances are up (just)
However, my success rate is down

I’d argue the successes have been pretty darn successful this year. I got paid for the first time. I’ve had the longest wait between acceptance and publication (See you in Feb 22 for that one). I had the most poems published in one go (3!!), and the fastest submission to acceptance of less than 24 hours.

I ran the furthest I’ve ever run several times (eg getting further and further), I’ve completed more half marathons than ever and completed (just about) my first ever ultra marathon.

I’ve been injured for the first time so have a better idea of how to look after myself and what to look out for. I’ve disagreed with an editor’s suggestions for the first time, but not had the courage of my convictions to say no, but I’ve also written more reviews than ever before for more places. I’ve had some lovely feedback from people I’ve reviewed. I’ve managed some live readings and some online ones. I’ve helped a friend with a boatload of their own work and really enjoyed seeing some of them be published in great places. I’ve still got 23 poems out there waiting for acceptances, so any editors that want to mess with my chart please consider this an invitation. I’ve read a load of great poems and subscribed to some new mags. These random gibberings have been picked up a few times by Dave Bonta’s blog for sharing. Oh yes, and I’m still on Matthew Stewart’s annual list of poetry blogs. No need to use “the photos”, yet.

So from a poetry and running point of view 2021 hasn’t been a total disaster, darling, but I’m marking it down as “could do better”. Thank you to anyone that read one of my poems, or published one.

Thank you for reading in 2021. See you in 2022 for something. Not sure if it will be every week. I’d like to share more work by other people rather than quack on about running or nicking ink cartridges, etc.

15K running. So tired, this training lark is not kicking in.
0 hangovers
1 journey to Scarborough and Back
1 Christmas with the in laws
Many LFTs
2 rejections this week by Bad Lillies (lovely message though) and High Window
0 poems finished:
0 poems worked on:
0 poems published:
0 submissions:
0 acceptance:
23 poems currently out for submission.
72 Published poems*: Was 69, but one was not used in the end, having been accepted.
40 Poems* finished by unpublished
25 poems* in various states of undress
554 Rejected poems* Eg I’ve decided they are not good enough
1 review started: Holly Singlehurst: The Sea Turned As Thick As Honey
3 reviews to write: How did that happen, I’ve gone from 1 to do to having more…Hmmm
0 day without cigarettes…I was doing well…
0 Days since drinking
1 sleepless nights: This is not a development I approve of
1 more week that I’m not having an affair with Eva Green

* To date, not this week. Christ!!

Mucky legs
End of Year Lists Just Don’t Know When To StopEnd of year list and by list I mean lean to one side like I’m about to fall over
A Dream Of A Dream



Bardo Pond: Acid Guru Pond
Daphni: Joli Mai
Daughter of Swords: Dawnbreaker
The dB’s: Repercussions
Jeff Klein: Everyone’s A Winner, The Hustler
Mary Wells: Looking Back 1961-1964
The Meat Purveyors: Pain By Numbers
Mick Head: Adios Senor Pussycat, Artorius Revisited
Shack: The Fable Sessions, Here’s Tom With The Weather, The Corner of Miles & Gill
Sharon Van Etten: Remind Me Tomorrow, ST, Tramp
Sky Larkin: Kaleide
Sleepy Sun: Embrace, Maui Tears
Led Zeppelin: The Song Remains The Same
Smashing Pumpkins: Gish, Siamese Dream
Tall Ships: Everything Touching, Impressions, Chemistry
Dropsonde Playlist
The Archers
Moonstone – Audiobook
Luna: Lunapark, Bewitched
Rilo Kiley: More Adventurous
Jim McCulloch: When I Mean What I SayCassandra Jenkins: An Overview on Phenomenal Nature

Criminal Minds
Narcos: Mexico


The Tangerine
Shaun Hill: Warm Blooded Things
Poetry Review

No reason other than this is my favourite song from this year

2 thoughts on “Run on lines…

  1. Disagreed with editor: a good sign. Trust your instincts. Also editors need to KNOW when you disagree because it makes them question their own first instinct. We all need to ask those question!

    • Thank you. I did disagree the first time, and still disagreed with the final suggestion. I let it go through and I should have stuck to my guns. It was all quite minor, but I guess I at least knew I was doing it.

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