You know that moment when you finish a poem you think is really amazing and you can’t wait to share it with someone? That was my moment last week when I hosted writers’ group at my house. I was excited because it was the first time I’d used a new format for a poem. Usually,… Read More Being True to Your Audience
An epiphany — no, let’s just call it a moment. I had a moment recently (yesterday) where every poem I’d written looked, well, wrong. Not one — not even the one nominated for the Pushcart Prize — appealed to me. I would open one file, move some words around, then close it in disgust. I… Read More That Sink-or-swim Moment
I remember my first encounter with exceptionally written assonance in poetry. I was in a writers’ group in my hometown, and a friend of a friend joined the group for just a few meetings. She read her poem and I fell in love with the sound. We begged for more. Twenty-one years later, I still… Read More Knowing Your Assonance from a Hole in the Ground
Lately I’ve been bumping against an unusual problem. In reaching deep to get to some of the best emotions I can convert to prose, I’m in danger of exposing things to the light that could come back to bite me. It started with a poem I wrote about a childhood experience. I had acted like… Read More How Open is Your Book?
I was going over a few of my earlier poems last week, and I noticed something interesting. These poems, ones I’d considered little jewels when I’d written them, no longer appealed. In a few cases, I thought the writing sucked. Is that growth or is that person/place/time filters? Probably a little of both. So I’ve… Read More Trimming the Fat
It’s been an interesting, exciting few weeks for me. I was rifling through unread emails and came across one from a journal I’d been published in. I nearly deleted it unread thinking I’d go to the website and read. Good thing I opened it — My poem was nominated for a Pushcart Prize. Wow. Really?… Read More Favorite Poetry Books
It happened again — writers critiquing my work told me they didn’t see a clear picture of what I was representing. I didn’t leave enough clues, they said, to help them understand who and what I was talking about. Right there — my biggest dilemma. Had they told me the poem was vague, I’d have been… Read More How Accessible Should Your Poetry Be?