American poetry is in a very bad state. Confessional poetry constitutes the bulk of published poetry, as if readers give a damn about someone’s messed-up sexuality or their childhood traumas. Then there’s the poetry of protest, usually someone complaining about how their special group is discriminated against–and this is poetry written by people who are usually college professors. And the other big category of poetry is jacking-off poetry, poetry that merely plays games with words, Gertrude Stein Light.
American fiction, on the big presses, is weak, self-enclosed and hermetic, unadventurous, and politically and socially safe. No chances are taken in form or content or language. Most of it is not worth reading. Might as well watch a good movie–you’d get more out of it.
—Eric Miles Williamson in Huffington Post