Hall to McNair: April 11, 1981


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11 April 1981

Wes McNair
Sutton, NH 03260

Dear Wes,

I asked you because I was confused, not because I dis-
trusted you.

However, you have removed another poem from the possibility
of publication for pay! I cannot believe that you have forgotten!
Last year you were astonished when I told you that publication
in the Concord Monitor – or any publication – precluded re-pub-
lication in almost any magazine that paid anything or took
itself seriously.

Of course that remains true for [this one]. It matters not
at all what the director of the “Willory Farm Poetry Contest”
tells you. Very decent of him, I am sure, not to mind your
reprinting it – but the point is that the magazines are not
in the business of reprinting from other publications! This
is really too bad, because it is a poem that I am sure that
we could have sold. In return for a fifth prize, we lose
the poem.

Just to be clear. The fact that the present publisher
of a poem tells you that there is no problem about reprinting
it tells you absolutely nothing about whether somebody else
will want to print it under these circumstances or not. And
the answer is virtually always no.

Please do not submit poems for any kind of publication –
even just for other contestants, it doesn’t of course matter
who the hell is supposed to read it – without telling Joey.
Because again he may have gotten himself in trouble, by sending
out a poem which, if it is taken by this magazine, he will have
to withdraw, thus offending a poetry editor.

Best as ever,