Poetry Genius Editors – Poetry Genius Guidelines

Produced By: Education Genius

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Annotating Texts:

- Use third person only.
- Be concise. This should be a space where multiple contributors can add to each note.
- Carefully select text for annotation, ideally selecting smaller, discrete sections.
- Avoid selecting individual words to explain unless they're particularly rich and need a lot of unpacking. Otherwise, fold word definitions into a larger explanation of a phrase, line, etc.
- Don't just rephrase the line. Instead, add context, interpretation, and/or multimedia (see below).
- Add pictures and videos to help illustrate a line, or to support your argument about the text.
- When referring to a text that also appears on RG, link internally.
- As much as possible, avoid empty phrases like "It is interesting that..." Either be specific in describing the effect in question, or just explain without describing.
- Like rap and rock annotations, poetry/literature annotations should be relaxed and entertaining while still being informative. But they should have their own sensibility as well.
- DO look for places to incorporate existing commentary on texts, but
- DON'T plagiarize. If you quote a source, use quotation marks and cite it. If you paraphrase an argument from another source, cite it. Not only will you avoid trouble, you’ll create a much more helpful annotation.

Adding Texts:

- Click "Add New Song/Text" in the header menu.
- Add poems and stories individually, novels and nonfiction works by chapter, plays by scene (or act, if there are no scene divisions). Create one text page per chapter/scene.
- Add the author's name to the Artist field and the title to the Title field. DO NOT PUT AUTHOR NAMES OR TITLES IN ALL CAPS.
- Add the name of the book, collection, or play to the "Album" field.
- If there is a coauthor or translator, add their names to the "Featured Artist(s)" field.
- Select "Poetry" as the genre for poetry, "Other" for prose literary texts.
- Add the text to the "Lyrics" field. Carry over the formatting. Clean up as needed.
- In the "Context" field, provide background information about the poet/writer and the work.
- If a high-quality reading of a text exists on YouTube, add it to the "YouTube URL" field.
- English-language works published before 1923 are in the public domain. Add as many of these as possible.
- Don't add entire book-length works (novels, plays, poetry collections, etc.) under copyright restriction. Instead, use short excerpts and focus on quality over quantity.

Edit the description to add:

  • Historical context: the work's place in history, how it was received
  • A summary of the work's overall themes (example: "Here, Byron evokes the classic struggle between virtue and temptation...")
  • A description of the work's overall style and tone
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