How to combat lockdown: poetry group's online magazine has readers in 20 countries

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Poetry groups have reacted in different ways to the pandemic. Quite a few have shut up shop, waiting for it to blow over so we can all return to live venues. A number have switched to online events on platforms like Zoom and found it surprisingly easy to get used to. Judging from the green shoots of Zoom events appearing on Write Out Loud’s online Gig Guide, this is an increasing number.

Others have avoided the live online route, but still sought electronic ways to stay in touch and maintain creative links. Richard Hartley, pictured, is a Write Out Loud member, and until last year he was hosting a monthly poetry group in Manningtree, Essex. When the Covid lockdown arrived in late March, he decided to keep in contact with his group by sending poetry by email and this developed into curating a full-blown magazine.

He now publishes Poetry Plus – The Magazine, a monthly online electronic magazine, free for anyone to read. He says that the magazine is not a commercial venture, but instead an attempt to allow those interested to continue to read a wide cross-section of poetry “during these strange and difficult times”.

The magazine appears on the last Friday of each month, when Richard sends a link to the newest edition to an email list of readers.  He said: “As it is a free magazine, I encourage readers to send the email on to their friends who have an interest in poetry. Many do so, with the result that we now have readers in 20 countries, scattered across the world.”

You can find the names of Write Out regulars within its pages, and submissions of poetry for possible publication, or poetry collections for potential review are welcomed. You can find back copies of Poetry Plus here



'Write Out Loud was life-changing for me': Tony Walsh on how he became a poet ►


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John F Keane

Wed 3rd Mar 2021 18:37

That is just fantastic, what an incredible resource in these troubled times.

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Richard Hartley

Sun 31st Jan 2021 12:18

Thankyou to M.C.Newberry and to Barbara A Steward for your very kind words.
It's certainly good to be appreciated and such positive comments make all the effort worthwhile!

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M.C. Newberry

Sat 30th Jan 2021 16:04

A very worthwhile venture that demonstrates how an individual with
conviction of purpose can make a difference to many lives. There
should be more like him in a poetry world that can find substantial
sums for "prizes" in the pursuit of overtly commercial publishing promotions.

Barbara A Steward

Sat 30th Jan 2021 16:01

An opportune publication containing a variety of pleasurableness, some poems requiring deeper thought, others that skim along, then take you by surprise with a final twist.
A beckoning doorway every month to lead the concerned mind away from daily unhappy bulletins and inspire creative thoughts.
Richard Hartley, the host is a published author with a fascinating poetry book on Amazon, An Early Spring day. Humorous, searingly honest journey through life trials and tribulations. Some with gravitas to cause examination of ones own path.

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