2020 Wordwide Call for Poetry

August 5, 2019 – Los Angeles: Artists For A Better World International is calling on global poets to submit poems for our next printed poetry anthology, in support of World Art Day 2020 (4/15/20), which is celebrated each year on Leonardo da Vinci’s birthday (April 15). Leonardo da Vinci’s areas of interest included invention, drawing, painting, sculpture, architecture, science, music, mathematics, engineering, literature, anatomy, geology, astronomy, botany and more. He is widely considered one of the greatest painters of all time, with two of his most widely known works including Mona Lisa and The Last Supper.

This Artists For A Better World International physical book will also be our first publication that features companion online video poetry readings and is also intended to provide honorarium payments and complimentary books to the contributing poets and artists selected into the book (see below for more information).

The deadline for written poems is World Art Day 2020 (4/15/20).

The deadline for “Poetry of the Month,” including video poetry is 12/15/20.


For those who enjoy multi-media, our printed poetry anthology will also be supported by separate online videos of poetry readings from participating poets (videos are not a mandatory requirement for the physically printed poetry submissions).

The poets themselves can read their own poems on video, or they can have someone else read their poems on video, or poetry can be recorded as a song and in the style of a music video. (More details below).


  • Physically printed book of global poems
  • Separate online videos of global poetry readings


AFABW is dedicated to building a worldwide network of artists who share a vision of creating a better world through aesthetics and is open to artists and art enthusiasts of goodwill from all nationalities, creeds, races, religions and cultures. In short, any and all who desire to help in the creation of a better world are eligible to submit their poetry.


Artists For A Better World International challenges global poets to submit poetry informed by a theme of “creating a better world” and/or inspiring readers.

This theme is purposefully broad to encourage submissions.

For additional insight, please review the purpose of AFABW, as delineated in the AFABW Mission Statement.


Poets must upload their poetry submissions to the AFABW Int website by midnight, Pacific Standard Time, April 15, 2020, which is World Art Day.

NOTE: All poetry submitted by the deadline will be given due attention. However, earlier submissions will have an added benefit of more time for consideration.



  1. There is no cost to submit poems.
  2. Submit no more than three poems.
  3. Poems should be no more than about 250 words, while also understanding that shorter poems are preferred.
  4. Please submit your own work. If it’s co-written with associate poets, ensure each contributing poet is credited.
  5. Poems may have been previously published elsewhere. If so, please state where and when it was published.
  6. For poetry in a language other than English, an English version must accompany it.
  7. Poems may convey any positive or negative emotion and may be serious or playful, as long as the poem supports the theme. Humor is quite acceptable, nor is despair unacceptable, again, as long as the poem supports the theme (above).
  8. The editors’ decisions regarding poetry selections are final.
  9. Not all submissions will be accepted. Publication is based on poetry that aligns with the theme above, and possibly, how well a given poem works along with other selected poems.
  10. Poets should be subscribed to the free monthly AFABW Int Art Line eNewsletter to hear news and updates on the poetry book and other AFABW projects.

Certain poems may be illustrated with black & white sketches by visual artists. The selection of which poems to illustrate is up to the visual artists.


There is no cost to submit video poetry.

Please be sure your video poetry title is the same as your written poem, to ensure proper reference.

Submit up to three video poems via YouTube or Vimeo.

YouTube and Vimeo accounts are free. Alternatively, if you prefer to send us your video directly, simply request a private upload link. (Just be sure to do so at least a week before the deadline).


In addition to featuring the poets within the book itself, we will also feature the poets and their selected poems on the AFABW Int website, with a link to available video poetry with the same title.

  • The deadline for video poems is Dec 15, 2020
  • Video poetry can be submitted after the written poetry deadline and prior to the video poetry deadline
  • Poets who did not submit written poems prior to the deadline of April 12, 2020 (World Art Day), may still submit video poetry prior to Dec 15, 2020. However, only written poems submitted by the deadline of April 15, 2020 will be eligible for selection into the physical book.
  • Video poetry can be of the poet reading their work
  • Video poetry can be of someone else reading the poet’s work
  • Video poetry can be recorded in any environment (with attention to good quality audio)
  • Video poetry can be recorded at home, in nature, in a car, in an auditorium, a studio, the lobby of a building, a football field, or anywhere
  • Video poetry readings can be in front of an audience (or not)
  • Video poetry can be accompanied by music*
  • Video poetry can be presented as a song
  • Video poetry can be created in the style of a music video*
  • In brief, any style of video which includes the poem is acceptable

*Be sure to only use music or other material that you own, or have permission to use, or is free of copyright restrictions.

It is not required that a video poem be submitted to be considered for selection into the book. But it would allow viewers to gain an additional perspective into each poet’s written message.

Video poems can be submitted at the same time or later than the written poems, as long as either or both are submitted prior to their respective deadlines.

Video poetry is simply an additional (and separate) way to convey the message of written poetry and also pays homage to the earliest use of poetry as an oral tradition.


Each month, from Sept 2019 to Dec 2020, one or more of the most recent written and video poetry submissions will be featured on the AFABW Int website, social media and the AFABW Int Art Line eNewsletter.

Written poems and video poetry that may be featured each month are independent of the written poems that will be published in the physical book. In other words, “Poetry of the Month” is an additional way to honor outstanding poetry, which is not part of the selection process for becoming published in the physical book.

“Poetry of the Month” selections will favor video poetry. However, written submissions that have no companion video presentation of the poem may also be featured.


After the poems have been selected for publication into the book, and prior to the book’s publication, a “Call for Sketch Illustrations” will be announced requesting visual artists to provide black and white sketches of their favorite poems for potential inclusion in the book.

Visual artists may select one or more of their favorite poems to illustrate.

The idea is to imagine and produce a black and white sketch that represents some visual concept associated with a poem.

On August 15, 2020 there will be a separate announcement page for this phase of the book development.


Prior to the launch of the book, AFABW Int will be administering fundraising in order to provide no-cost copies of the physical book, as well as honorarium payments, to the poets and visual artists selected into the book.

There will be additional acknowledgments and honorariums for exceptional video poetry production, as well.

The distribution of books and honorariums to poets, visual artists and video producers is contingent upon the success of our fundraising efforts and may not occur if we do not achieve our fundraising goals.


  • Deadline for poetry submissions is April 15, 2020 (World Art Day)
  • Qualifying poems announced via email by June 15, 2020
  • Final poetry selected by July 15, 2020
  • Announce “Call for Sketch Illustrations” to support selected poetry on August 15, 2020
  • Deadline for artwork to illustrate poems is Nov 15, 2020
  • Physical book production will begin in December 2020
  • Deadline for video poems is Dec 15, 2020
  • Featured “Poetry of the Month” from Sept 2019 to Dec 2020
  • Completed physical book will be launched on 2021 World Art Day (4/15/21)
  • Contingent upon the success of our fundraising efforts, poets and visual artists selected into the book will receive complimentary copies of the physical books as well as honorarium payments. Distribution is intended to be completed by May 15, 2021. (This may not occur if we do not achieve our fundraising goals).
  • Subscribe to the AFABW Int Art Line eNewsletter for announcements

Ongoing developments will be announced via the AFABW Int Art Line eNewsletter as well as on the AFABW Int website.


Note: Past AFABW Int physical books were only available to purchase for a limited time. This newest poetry anthology may also have a limited publication and purchase opportunity.


Poets maintain all original rights to their work. By submitting poetry to AFABW Int, or in any way providing poetry or any other art to AFABW Int, poets and artists are granting the right to AFABW Int to include their poems within the AFABW Int poetry compilation book (should their poetry be selected) and to use it for promotional purposes.

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