A few months back, I was asked about the pros and cons of an unnamed poet who had invited himself as a speaker at my community college. "Could I recommend someone else?," was the question posed to me. Well, how many times has such a question been asked in Dean's meetings at community colleges and universities? How often is there a search for a poet for a local festival? Plenty of times, I figured. And what happens if the people asking the question have no idea where to find a poet for such a booking? They wander around the internet, google "poet" and have plenty of hits, but then, which of these thousands of poets are willing to travel? Who lives nearby? How can they be approached?
To make booking a poet an easier venture, and to promote poets for engagements, I organized a wiki and opened it up to poets I'm most acquainted with: the 800-plus members of the Women's Poetry (Wompo) listserv. Called the Women Poets Reader Directory, the wiki is now bursting with ready and willing poets, seasoned professionals and published writers, who stand ready to read at your next event.
The wiki is completely free. It's divided into the major U.S. regional areas as well as listings for Australia and Northern Europe. It's still relatively new, in its second week of official existence, and I anticipate the wiki will continue to grow.
Wompo members who want to be included, just send me an email or visit the wiki and click the "Join this Wiki" button.
Everyone else -- come by and take a look!