Poetry is perhaps the most difficult form of literature to publish traditionally—but don’t worry! Self-publishing poetry is easier and much more rewarding than the traditional route. In this case, you have full control of the publishing process. If you’re ready to take control of your publishing journey, follow the steps below to get started!

In this article, follow the steps to learn how to:

Where to Publish Poetry

Publishing doesn’t just have to be in the traditional sense of creating copies of a book to distribute. If you’re looking to publish your poetry for the world to read, then it’s worth exploring all the different ways.

  1. Social media. A risk-free, beginner-friendly way to start gaining an audience for your poetry is by creating a dedicated author Instagram or Facebook account. Share your poetry along with inspirational quotes and images to form a clear brand and messaging.
  2. Online poet communities. Websites like All Poetry and Hello Poetry allow you to publish your own poetry online, read others’, and get solid advice from more experienced writers.
  3. Journal and magazines. Feel like you have a winning piece? Enter contents or even submit your piece to a number of journals and magazines.
  4. Your local community. To gain more of a local audience, you can get creative and sell your work on postcards, magnets, and other merchandise at farmers markets. Additionally, you can frame some shorter pieces and ask around at local coffee shops to see who would like to display them.
  5. Self-publish. Keep reading below!

5 Easy Steps to Self-Publishing Poetry

The first step to self-publishing poetry is to write a lot of poems, of course. If you’re reading this, you’ve probably already completed this step, so we’ll skip to the next step so you can get started learning how to self-publish a poetry book right away.

Self-publishing poetry involves many of the same steps one would follow to self-publish any type of book, so we will focus on the steps that are specific to poetry books.

1. Edit your poetry and get feedback from fellow poets and experienced professionals. ????

While editing your own work is essential, you might also consider having a professional go over your poems to get feedback and correct any errors you may have missed yourself.

You can join poetry writing groups and workshops to get feedback from other writers. This can be a valuable resource for not only improving your craft, but for staying inspired and motivated to write, which can help you continue building your career as a poet as well.

2. Organize your poetry to create a collection with a unified theme, topic, or style. ????➕????

An important skill to hone when learning how to self-publish a poetry book is curating a collection.

Unlike other forms of writing, when it comes to poetry, less is more. For this reason, you’ll need to curate a collection that is unified. Order your poetry books in a way that best showcases your poem.

Be selective and skillful when compiling a collection of poetry to publish. This will make advertising and selling your poems to readers much easier because you will have a unified theme or vision to pitch.

Bonus tip: Keep in mind that you do not need to publish every poem you write or publish all of your poems in one book! Maximize your content by publishing several collections over a period of time. This is important if you are looking to build a career and to make money writing poetry.

3. Establish an online presence and join online poetry and book communities to begin marketing your poetry book. ????

When self-publishing any work, it’s important to create and maintain a relationship with your audience, and the best way to do that with today’s technology is to use social media, websites, and newsletters. Find your audience and connect with them, whether it’s before or after your book is published.

While poets have been writing poems for nearly all of human existence, it’s important to notice current trends, such as Instagram and Tumblr users sharing poems in the form of images and design typography.

Joining these social media communities could be a useful book marketing strategy to gain both an audience and recognition for your work.

4. Decide the format of your book and have the interior and a cover designed. ????

This step involves deciding the best method for how to self-publish a poetry book. During this step, you should decide whether you want to publish your book in print and/or eBook format. In addition, you should decide whether it is appropriate to include book illustrations.

Keep in mind that, designing and formatting poetry books are more difficult than books written in prose. In this case, poems are often formatted with irregular spacing and line breaks.

This also means that getting the design and format of your book right is even more important because you want your readers to be able to view each poem in its intended format.

5. Get your book distributed so your audience can purchase your poetry from every major book retailer. ????

While the formatting and design of your poetry book are very important, the most important step is making sure your book is available for readers to purchase from all major retailers.

Whether you decide to publish in print or with eBooks, Gatekeeper Press has professional formatting and distribution services to make sure your book looks great and is for sale all over the world, without sacrificing your profits or rights.

To Publish or Not to Publish: That Is (Not Even) The Question.

Congratulations! Now you know how to publish a book of poetry. Are you willing to take the next step? Begin by writing down your personalized plan by outlining how you’ll tackle each of the steps mentioned above.

Self-publishing poetry can be a long process, but now that you know the steps ahead of you, you can get started by getting a quote or free consultation at Gatekeeper Press.

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