I believe writing workshops should give participants new insight into their work and either a new tool in their writer’s toolkit or new ideas of how to use the tools they already have. To inquire about scheduling a workshop, please use the Contact form.
Topics (a sampling)
Ars Poëtica: Poet, Know Thyself!
Explore your poet identity and practice with a discussion of some ars poëtica poems, followed by a guided ars poëtica poem-writing session. “An ars poëtica poem is a poem examining the role of poets themselves as subject, their relationships to the poem, and the act of writing” (poets.org).
Moving Your Reader to Move Your Reader: The Power of Proximity and Distance in Poetry
With the help of some sample poems and very brief exercises, we’ll discuss how a poet’s choices affect where readers find themselves as they read (in what physical and temporal place, and in what relationship to the poem’s speaker), and we’ll discover how that placement affects readers’ ability to be moved by the poem. You’ll leave with a number of strategies for creating proximity and distance, and an understanding of how you can use these strategies to strengthen your work.
Putting Your Lines to Work for Your Poem
The line can do so much more than signal “this is a poem.” In this workshop, we’ll look closely at the effects of various lines lengths and line breaks (or turns) and see how they affect the poems they are in. Throughout, we’ll write a variety of lines ourselves, honing our sensibilities, expanding our options, learning how to make our lines do more work for our poems.
Getting to Know Your Poem: Best Questions for Better Revisions
What needs to happen between drafting a poem and revising it? We’re often advised to get some distance from the poem. But better advice might be to get to know the poem. This session will equip you to see your own work more clearly, to identify patterns, problems, and possibilities. Bring a draft you’d like to revise and be prepared for a time of discovery. Hot messes (i.e., problem poems) are welcome! A page or less in length would probably be most manageable.
What We Carry, What We Cross: A Writing Session on Migrations and Borders
Explore your own relationship to place in this generative creative writing workshop. We’ll examine some poems and prose to see how others have explored this territory, and then attempt our own explorations with a series of writing prompts. You may come away from the session with some surprise discoveries about yourself, with fresh insight into the themes, and with new creative work. No creative writing experience necessary.