For too long, I have had an ugly mess of Google Docs that would collect my poems. I would have to search in three different files to find my five poems for submissions. That stopped today.
If you also have had the same struggles about finding where you placed that one specific poem, well I have a possible solution for you. We all have different thought processes and, therefore, different organizational skills, but I hope I can help by teaching you through my mistakes. If my previous methods work for you, then perfect! I am glad I could inspire ideas.
Google Doc Organization
I enjoyed Google Docs for a given time, until I realized that I was writing too much. I tried seperating my work into catagories by each new document, but some of my poems blur topics so that got to be another complication. In the end, I dropped this organization method, but it was easy to use in the beginning.
Pros: When keeping a Google Doc, it is so easy to know that everything you have ever written is in one location without submitting it to the public. Also, Google Docs is easy to format and everything is easily separated by the usual Ctrl+Enter combo. If you are sharing your piece with someone, too, Google Docs has an easy sharing method that even allows easy access for comments.
Cons: Once you have written so many pieces, this strategy becomes obsolete. I was struggling finding specific pieces because I had to continuously scroll through documents to find the pieces that I liked. Also, I forgot I even wrote a lot of my pieces because they were lost in the sea of documents, which meant that I never remembered to edit them.
My journaling life is a short story. Even though I have been writing since I was in elementary, I never took the idea of journaling to heart. I always felt the usage of a journal was clunky compared to an app on my phone and I dislike not being able to edit a piece. However, journaling has its place when it comes to organizing ones thoughts and, of course, poetry.
Pros: Nothing beats the aesthetic of good, old pen to paper. Writing in a journal feels so personal and as if you are the main shot of an indie film. Also, when I had my journal open in front of me, I knew it was time to write and I would be unable to move until my work was complete.
Cons: The constant journal. I could never remember to bring my journal with me, and even when I finally did, that was the day no inspiration struck me. Being a journal feels forced to me and if I truly had a good idea, I would much rather type it out on my phone to add to an archive later. Not to mention, when I wanted to submit my work to a journal, I had to type it out onto the computer. It was inefficient going from written to digital when I wanted to use a piece. I would much rather have my work digital from the beginning.
Obviously, I am acquainted with WordPress so I always knew that collecting my poetry on this website would be simple. However, I never used this method. Even though it is truly a good method for collecting poetry, I would not use it myself.
Pros: When it comes to WordPress, you have the power to publish your work to the public or keep it private. This is a great feature when you are not ready to share some pieces with the world yet. Also, inviting others to view your site privately makes it simply to allow friends to comment on your work for revisions. When revising, you can also keep a running post for your original and rewrites, which is helpful when you are not quite confident if the original was better or not. Not to mention, you can make your posts only show the title if you use the “Read More” block at the beginning of your post. This will allow you to scroll through your poems in half the time it would for a continuous Google document. Also, it comes with a search bar so you can quickly find your most memorable pieces.
Cons: I found that since I already had a main WordPress page, I did not want to create another. I also did not want to post a whole bunch of unfinished pieces that would pollute my main feed. There really is no complaints here other than the fact that I dislike using the same website for multiple reasons.
We all know Tumblr. Whatever your association is with the app, you have to admit that in the end, Tumblr is the easiest way to keep a blog. Due to Tumblr’s features, this was my ultimate choice for where I keep my poetry.
Pros: Tumblr not only allows you to publish to the public, but it also allows private postings. If you are not ready for the world to see one poem yet, then hide it until it is ready (or never let others see). Tumblr is simple (even simpler than WordPress), and makes it easy to type up a piece and press “Post”. Also, anyone can offer advice on Tumblr. With a few follows and sent links to friends, editing your pieces with the help of others is simple. Also, Tumblr has a long scroll tab and the “Read More” tab feature which makes it easy to quickly scroll through all of your work. There is also a “Like Post” option which you can use to like all of your favorite pieces that you would most likely use for submissions.
Cons: Tumblr will not make it easy to format your text. If you often use formatting to your advantage, then I would suggest not letting Tumblr corrupt its true meaning. Be careful of rude comments, too. People can be cruel at times so make sure to not take hatful comment at face value. We all have different tastes when it comes to art and you have to except that there will be others who do not appreciate your work.
In the end, it really comes down to what you prefer. If you only have a few pieces, then a Google document will suffice. If you have a lot of poems you would love to share to the masses, then post them onto a Tumblr account. If you have a low profile WordPress, start posting under a catagory.
In my personal opinion, however, I think Tumblr is the best choice. I wanted to get my work circulating and Tumblr was the perfect quick publish. I have about 10 pieces of mine that I keep liked so I can have a quick link to them whenever I see a journal opening. Tumblr fitted my needs and it keeps everything in one collective group.