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I'm a poet who is starting to publish my work, and I would appreciate advice on whether poems about very personal experiences, particularly though not always negative ones, are going to be well received.

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In the US, poetry has a small market share. There, poetry sells around 10,000 books per year, compared to 788 million print books sold in 2022 overall, of which 404 million were fiction books.

In the UK, poetry seems to be on the rise and 1.3 millions books of poetry were sold in 2018, compared to around 200 million print books sold each recent year.

According to the Guardian, the most popular poems are dealing with politics, social issues, and the current state of the world.

I would recommend that you make yourself familiar with the wide variety of poetry magazines and what topics and styles their editors and readers prefer. There are many lists of poetry magazines out there that you can easily find through your favourite search engine, for example a list curated by the US Poets & Writers non profit organization or another list by the UK National Poetry Library. If possible, peruse as many issues of as many magazines as you can, maybe in a larger public or university library or on the magazine's websites, to get an overview of what the current trends in published poetry are. But don't forget that while certain topics might be very popular and trending, there might be niche markets and magazines publishing less popular topics.

Instagram seems to play a big role in the spread and popularity of poetry today. Another popular format seem to be poetry slams.

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  • Interesting statistics.
    – Sayaman
    Sep 30, 2023 at 3:54
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Poetry about negative experiences can certainly be well-received, because it provides catharsis to individuals who share similar experience. However, you need to ensure that you don't use overly cryptic language, you tap into universal themes like poverty, depression, etc. and you don't use a language that's too obscene or violent.

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