Poetry Scams

Yes, unfortunately it is true; there are companies who want every dime that you own. Those companies deserve the title of scams. There are many companies who take art and turn it into profit but lucky for you, these companies are very easy to spot. Follow the simple checklist below when deciding if a company is a scam.
• Never pay a “reading fee,” if your poetry is good, publishers will make money off the work, not off the artist. Companies want your work and you do not need to for editors to read it.
• Watch for companies who will publish everybody.
• Watch for companies with high cash prizes. Example: $10,000 prize. Ask yourself; where did they get this money? The fact is, publishers do not make very much money.
• Companies who turn large profits are out for your money, not to help you.
• Read who has already been published by the company. Are they of good quality, or just taking up space for the company’s profit?
• Who is sponsoring the contest? Is the sponsor a legitimate organization?
• Look at the guidelines. Are they clear and precise? Do they make any sense?
• It may be a scam if you can not get a response from an editor in a legitimate amount of time. You should be able to contact the editor with any questions.
• Is the name of the contest similar to the name of larger company’s contests?
• If a company will only accept very short poems, it is more likely a scam because it is easier to fit many poems into an anthology.
• If an editor did not even sign a letter sent to you, this is very impersonal and may not be legitimate. This may be hard to tell if the company prints a signature in a different color.
• If a company is impersonal this usually means it is a scam and they want to get as many people to buy their products as possible.
How can you tell if a company is definitely a scam?
• Send in your worst poem that you can ever write while still staying in the guidelines. Do not use your real name, if they publish it under your name, it could ruin your reputation. If they accept this “poem” that you tried so hard to make bad, and on top of that they ask you to purchase this, they are definitely a scam. Remember; not all companies that ask for money or for you to buy a book are scams.
How do you know that Poetry with Meaning is not a scam?

We do try to publish as many people as possible but we do not accept anybody. We want quality poetry. The better your poetry is, the more likely we are to accept you in one of our contests.
• We do not turn a profit from our contests. We are here for the poets, not for the company.
• Our goal as a company is to move our poets in the direction that will make them better, hopefully get them a book deal. We want to be the company to breed the best artists in the world. The reason that we include so much free advice, rules, tips, contests, and publishing is to make you one of the best.
• We want you to succeed, we care!

Poetry contests are a legitimate way to break into the field of poetry and with research you have a great chance to win these contests. Book publishers keep an eye on artists who win contests because they believe that if you are good enough to win a contest, than you are good enough to have your own book published. Look at our “how to win poetry contests”(Comming Soon) page for more advice.<