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Brain block, help please! How do I properly write an excerpt of a poem?

(10 Posts)
QueenofEsgaroth Wed 31-May-17 18:13:52

Just title it
Excerpt of

then at the end put

to be continued...

in italics or are there rules I don't know?

MrsHathaway Wed 31-May-17 18:22:57

I'm not sure what you're asking. What kind of document is this appearing in? If it's in a piece of creative writing then you'd usually announce it fairly informally but acknowledge it in full elsewhere. I'm using ...... here to indicate an indent rather than dots as I can't format it otherwise!

Alice had always had a penchant for Yeats, but on that mournful, grey day his Prayer for My Daughter was stuck in her head:

...... Once more the storm is howling, and half hid
...... Under this cradle-hood and coverlid
...... My child sleeps on.

Children could and did sleep through the most remarkable noises, she observed to herself.

p3 W B Yeats, "A Prayer for My Daughter" from Michael Robartes and the Dancer, 1921

MrsHathaway Wed 31-May-17 18:24:14

It would be excerpt from, though just from on its own would be fine. And not "to be continued", although depending on punctuation you might need [...] or similar at the end or beginning.

QueenofEsgaroth Wed 31-May-17 18:27:58

Oh sorry should have explained more, it is for a competition so line number restrictions. The one I am submitting is long and in parts so am putting a few lines from part 1 then a few lines from part 2 etc so the judges get the gist but I am within the line limit.

So I currently have

Excerpt from blah blah part 1

blah blah

to be continued...

Excerpt from blah blah part 2

blah blah

to be continued...

QueenofEsgaroth Wed 31-May-17 18:28:50

the to be continued is annoying and wanky looking!

QueenofEsgaroth Wed 31-May-17 18:29:42

Will dots be enough to convey that there is more?

MrsHathaway Wed 31-May-17 18:48:21

You can't put "to be continued" because you aren't going to continue it! Also it actually doesn't matter whether there's more in this instance because you need to be submitting something that works as a coherent piece in its own right.

I'm not an expert in these precise circumstances but I'd do:

from Full Title

Text of the
First extract
Look at me being all modern with avant garde metre
Second extract here
With its clever bits and spacing intact
Making one coherent whole
And hoping for good notes.

QueenofEsgaroth Wed 31-May-17 18:56:02

Good point about the continuing.

It does stand on its own just so much better with all and different parts are different stories/flavours so hopefully having a bit of each as opposed to one part will help that.

Thanks for the input, I know it probably won't be placed but it would be very frustrating to be thwarted on presentation instead of content!

Obviously if I win you will be top of the list in my speech grin

MrsHathaway Wed 31-May-17 19:00:06

If you're having to butcher it too much for the competition then it might not be the right competition for the work.

I read a good tip recently which is to rewrite your work. Not edit, start again. Print out the original to refer to but type/write from scratch. Perhaps you could create something new from scratch based on the feel and best phrases of the original, but aimed at the precise word count of the competition.

QueenofEsgaroth Wed 31-May-17 19:07:29

Eh I have til midnight, I have some others that will fit but this one I really like and have had some good feedback on. You are right though, it is a work in progress and not quite an illiad but definitely never going to fit in a competition in the fullness of time, hmmm.

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