Zeugma Workshop defunct

Kind of a sad topic for my 100th post, but I guess it’s fitting that one milestone is marked by another. The Zeugma Workshop (www.zpoems.net) is no more, at least for now.

I feel that whatever progress I’ve made from a writer of sophomoric poems about dead relatives to a finished, objective writer of incomprehensible poems about dead relatives is due to that bunch. I joined in the late ’90s, back in the dark ages when a mailing list was cutting edge. As I recall, I found it after a Compuserve poetry forum I’d been on fell apart.

The two times I’ve been really published (once in print, once on the web) were due to tips (and perhaps behind-the-scenes scenanigans) from fellow members.

It ended not with a bang but a whimper. We moderators woke up one day and realized that no one had posted for a couple of months.

This is a blog, in part, about how technology and writing intersect, about the possibilities for one to influence the other. Sadly, I think as technology changes, the people it leaves behind are like the patrons at a declining restaurant. And a mailing list is really passé. I wish we’d kept up with the times.

I feel very sad about the friends I’ve made and lost along the way at Zeugma. The original two moderators at Zeugma, whose names I can’t even remember, but who took a chance on someone who wrote some really lousy poems in an application (and yes, the application always really meant something – to the end, our admission rate was no more than 75% at best, or worst, depending on how you saw it.)

Even Craig Chaffin, who pissed me off time and again with critiques. Especially Erin Noteboom-Bow. I hope she does vanity searches sometimes and finds this. She wrote in a dedication to me that I was “a better poet than I know,” and I have clung to that hope like a raft – more than she knows. Scott Murphy, who wrote (and hopefully still writes) poems like fine dry martinis.

Read some of our best works here at this ungainly URL:

And especially Holly Pettit and Page Nelson, my fellow moderators to what looks like the end, unless someone else takes it up. I mean it when I say I want to keep in touch, to read what you write. And Holly, I still want that copy of your book. I’ll even pay for it. Please?

On the other hand, I feel very glad to have met new friends along the way – the greatest crop of them so far at http://www.dversepoets.com – I won’t start naming names because I’ll leave someone out (as I did with the Zeugma list, I’m sure.

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