How quickly should a poet revise a poem?

Helllllllloooooooooo! 🙂

I finally sat down and started writing again. So I have a poem or two in the works but today, I was seriously pondering revisions. I recently posted a poem in progress on a forum I visit because I felt that going forward without feedback would be a waste of time and energy. It was actually a first draft which is completely atypical of me but I needed some help! (LOL)

The comments and suggestions were as usual, helpful. But when I mentioned that it was a first draft and that I was almost ready to revise, the other poets began to caution me on “instant revision”. The reasoning is that it takes time to craft a poem and to have enough emotional distance from the subject to ruthlessly go through the poem for maximum impact in editing. That’s perfectly logical. However, the common length of time mentioned is like 6 months.


All I can say is…. “Orly?!” (if you don’t speak gamer/lazyinternet, that means “Oh, really?” lol.)

That length of time just seems excessive! 6 months to revise once? How does anyone ever get any new writing done then? So what I really want to know from my fellow writers is…

How often do you revise a poem?


2 thoughts on “How quickly should a poet revise a poem?

  1. I actually find it best to wait about a month or so before doing the first revision on a poem. But, that’s under the assumption that you’re writing other stuff during that time. The best approach, at least in my opinion is to write the poem, leave it and “forget” about it for about a month, send it to others and have them critique it, and then you can make revisions possibly using suggestions that others gave. While I agree that it is best to wait before trying to revise poetry, 6 months sounds a bit extreme to me.

    • Thanks for answering! 🙂 I know poetry worth reading takes time but oh my, 6 months is way too long lol. A month definitely sounds better to me.

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