From the film, National Treasure: "There are 20 million books in the Library of Congress, and they all say the same thing: 'Listen to Riley.'"

I am willing to read poetry in English from writers of all nations, ages, sexual persuasions, and faiths. I distinguish only between those dedicated to the craft and those less so. I'm happy to read poets for whom English is not a native language. What I am not happy to read, and will not continue to read when I encounter it, are writers who have nothing of any meaning to say, whose work shows no evidence of dignity and values and suggests no higher purpose behind the writing. Sadly, these lacks characterize much writing posted at this site.

While in college, I edited the literary magazine and received a national award for fiction. So I have experience as an editor and try to leave thoughtful praise where it's due.

I'm also a musician. Concert Master in band in high school and college, I played club music for a time to help pay for school. But I've returned to my classically trained roots, and now compose and record on an electronic harpsichord of my own design. All my most successful recordings are free for listening at my YouTube channel, "James Dale Riley." Like at Wattpad, you can comment and vote.

Do you too publish on Wattpad? Please, let's ask not what we can get from our writing here, but what we can give others through it.

And let's not spew, treating Wattpad as a therapy couch. Instead, let's craft our work with our readers in mind, showing them every regard. Let's write as though we're writing to someone we love and respect.

So, please polish and proof. We all make and miss typos, but I've had enough of "poets" who sniff, "Oh, I don't even read what I've written. I just freely express myself. I'm an artist!" In art and life carelessness is not a virtue. If you don't care about your work, how can you expect others to? How about a little craft as well as art?

Jim Riley
  • Seattle, Washington
  • JoinedSeptember 12, 2012

Last Message
jimrileyenlight jimrileyenlight 3 hours ago
As a  break from my often hypermodern theme music for my poetry, a more traditional classical piece to accompany "Haiku of Conscience."
View all Conversations

Stories by Jim Riley
Haikus of Conscience by jimrileyenlight
Haikus of Conscience
Conscience speaks. Poet responds, "I must write. So let me write with your voice." Highest ranks to...
ranking #4 in enlightenment See all rankings
Valentine's Day Every Day by jimrileyenlight
Valentine's Day Every Day
Verses our hearts might sing, had they voices. Highest ranks to date, #1 in Deep Poetry, #1 in Mantra, #1 in...
ranking #4 in mantra See all rankings
Dancing God: A Haiku Autobiography by jimrileyenlight
Dancing God: A Haiku Autobiography
Poems tug against the leash of the constraints of meaning. Words pull back. Highest ranks to date, #1 in Surr...
ranking #8 in mantra See all rankings
1 Reading List