Best New Zealand Poems
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Welcome from Chris Price
Best New Zealand Poems is published annually by the International Institute of Modern Letters, and aims to introduce readers - especially internationally - to leading contemporary New Zealand poets. The poems are chosen to show the vitality and range of current writing.
We have shamelessly modelled this online project on the successful US paperback anthology, The Best American Poetry.
Each year we publish 25 poems from recent literary magazines and poetry collections, where possible including notes about and by the poet, as well as links to related publishing and literary websites. In this way we hope that readers will be able to follow up fresh discoveries. There are plenty to be made.
The editorship of Best New Zealand Poems changes annually. This year's editor is current Poet Laureate Ian Wedde. Earlier editors were Bernadette Hall (2011), Chris Price (2010), Robyn Marsack (2009), James Brown (2008), Paula Green (2007), Anne Kennedy and Robert Sullivan (2006), Andrew Johnston (2005), Emma Neale (2004), Robin Dudding (2003), Elizabeth Smither (2002) and Iain Sharp (2001).
The 2013 edition will be jointly edited by Jane Stafford and Mark Williams.
This edition brings with it another changing of the guard. Bill Manhire retired at the end of 2012, relinquishing the role of series editor for Best New Zealand Poems. The anthology is just one of many lively projects Bill initiated during his time at Victoria University, and we aim to take good care of it in its second decade.
While Best New Zealand Poems is a digital native, we still like books - and so in 2011 we chose to celebrate the journal's tenth birthday with a great leap sideways from the digital domain into the world of print. The Best of Best New Zealand Poems (Victoria University Press), edited by Bill Manhire and Damien Wilkins, offers a condensed view of the first decade, with over 60 poets represented. In a period when the future of the book is being hotly debated, we are encouraged that the anthology is already in its second printing.
Best New Zealand Poems is supported by a grant from Creative New Zealand, whose assistance we gratefully acknowledge. Creative New Zealand’s grant goes entirely to contributors and editor.
We are grateful, as ever, to Ralph Hotere (1931-2013) for permission to use his drawing for the first edition of James K Baxter's Jerusalem Sonnets (Bibliography Room, University of Otago, 1970) on our opening page, as we have done since our first edition.
International Institute of Modern Letters
Please visit our dedicated Best New Zealand Poems website to browse the current issue or any previous issue.
Submissions are now open for Best New Zealand Poems 2013.
What to submit
- Only poems or books of poems published by New Zealanders within the calendar year of the current collection are eligible for consideration. (Unpublished poems may be submitted to our other annual online collection, Turbine.)
- Poems or collections published in print or online, and in local or international publications, are eligible provided the publication date falls within the calendar year.
- Publishers may submit books, magazines, journals or links to online publications that meet these criteria.
- Individual poets may also submit published poems or books directly.
When to submit
- You may submit work for consideration at any time during the calendar year.
- Submissions for the current collection must be received by the IIML by 16 December 2013.
- Receipt of email submissions will be acknowledged. Postal submissions will be acknowledged if an email address or SSAE is included with the submission.
- Publishers and / or authors of selected poems will be contacted by February of the following year. For all accepted material, copyright remains with the author (or in some instances the original publisher) upon publication.
- The editors are unable to engage in correspondence regarding individual submissions.
How to submit
Postal submissions should be directed to:
c/o International Institute of Modern Letters
PO Box 600
Email submissions of individual poems or a small selection of poems should be submitted, preferably as attachments, to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Please put 'BNZP submission' in the subject line.
- Include contact details, preferably an email address, in the body of the email.
- Include name and contact details on each page of your submission.
- Mac users sending MS Word attachments should save them first in Rich Text Format and add a ".rtf" suffix to each filename.
- We do not accept whole manuscripts in electronic form.
Whether posting or emailing, please include the following information with each individual submission:
The place and date of publication of each poem submitted (including web links if relevant).
Your name, email and the poem title on each page you submit.