Poetry scams, like any other get scam refund , promise big money and big dreams to the author of the poem. The biggest catch with this type of scam is that the author usually does not really win anything at all; rather, the author has to pay money in order to have a poem published in a private volume, or to receive a special award for the poem.
Likewise, any poem that is “guaranteed” publication without having to be read with a critical literary eye does not necessarily have to be of high literary quality. A scam site like Poetry.com offers prizes for best poems and runners-up but only if the poem is chosen as a finalist. Websites as such will send letters to those who do mail in original poems but can easily get caught up in believing that their poem is a first-rate literary work. There are however ways to avoid being suckered into poetry scams:
1. Any potential poetry publisher that promises a publication of the poem in a private volume that can only be purchased through that site is most likely to be a scam. These so-called publishers will charge the poet forty or fifty dollars to have the poem published in the book. Genuine poetry publications and journals do not charge for submission evaluations.
2. Contests are perpetually ongoing with these scam sites. If one submitter receives a letter saying that he or she won a major prize, there is a very good chance that someone else received the same letter in the mail within the same amount of time. Any contest that claims that the winner has to pay money to receive a blue ribbon award for the poem should be avoided.
3. Poetry scams practically never offer the poet anything in return without asking money for it, regardless if it is the publication of a poem or a mantel trophy for being a poetry finalist. Worse yet, the scam site owns all copyrights to the poem, whereas genuine publications allow the poet to maintain copyright once the poetry issue is released. Thus the poet makes no money off of the poem written but the site in possession of the poem can print and re-print the poem and make money from that.
Potential poets should opt for real poetry and literary journals to see their work published in. While the field of published poetry is highly competitive and many journals cannot afford to pay poets for their work, there are a few publications that will pay a certain sum of money to the poet, depending on what is available for funding. Submitting poems to individual poetry and literary publications is more time consuming than sending one poem to a poetry scam site like Poetry.com but is worth it, since the poet can build up a real literary resume in that manner, and will not have to pay any money to have a poem published.