Poetry Prompts Galore!

Fingertips itching to type? Got a bottle of ink just waiting to ooze words onto the page?

Well, this could be exactly what you’ve been waiting for – because we can point you in the direction of not one, but TWO sets of poetry exercises. That’s right: two!

Number One:

The first is organised by the Young Poets’ Network, with the exercises themselves set by the recent Eric Gregory Award winner, Jon Stone. They’re appearing every other day throughout August, and you’re welcome to post your results in the comment boxes for people to peruse.

There are five challenges up already, so plenty to get your teeth stuck into.

The link to the first challenge is here: http://www.youngpoetsnetwork.org.uk/2012/08/01/august-writing-challenge-1-book-shelf-poem/

Number Two:

The second set of challenges comes from quite frankly awesome poet Jacob Sam-La Rose, and is found on tumblr site, probable causes.

There’s a ‘submit’ button here, too (on the left hand side – it’s the little envelope symbol), so you can send in your efforts.

Personally, we’d like to recommend today’s exercise (the one headed by the Mark Doty quotation: http://probablecauses.tumblr.com/). Since it’s a beautiful day, head out into the open air, enjoy the sunshine, and write a poem about wherever you end up.

Now excuse me, I’m off to pack my picnic…

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Things We Think You’ll Like:

There are many many things that we think you’ll like. Warm summer days, for instance, or chocolate-covered strawberries. We couldn’t possibly list them all here. But here are just a few choice pieces, that we really think you ought to see.

  1. At the top of our list, a free (yes, that’s right, FREE) online course from the University of Pennsylvania, in Modern & Contemporary American Poetry.
    Information on the course here:

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  2. We also want to promote a challenge on the Young Poets Network. If you’re under 25 and a lyricist (or if you’re under 25 and fancy turning your hand to it), there’s a challenge to set some words to music. And the lovely Young Poets Network people have provided a video, too, so here’s some more information.

    To take part in the challenge, or to find out more about it (or both), go to the Young Poets Network’s page about the challenge.
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  3. Not far behind is a short story by Roald Dahl, entitled ‘The Great Automatic Grammatizator’. We don’t know what the rest of the blog is saying, or even which language it’s in, but this part is definitely worth a read.
    I know that this site is all about poetry, rather than short stories, but thematically it fits. It’s all about the art (or ‘art’ of writing).
    Read it here.
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  4. This one is another short story. We won’t say too much about it, because we don’t want to give it all away before you’ve read it, but there’s a bit of a theme running with our reading suggestions tonight. It’s called ‘Mr Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore’, by Robin Sloan. Quite aside from our loving the idea of a 24-hour bookshop, this is an eerie and modern story, and well worth a read.
    You can do so right here.
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  5. And finally, a picture of a graffitied rabbit (taken in a graffiti lane in Melbourne, Australia). Because let’s face it, who wouldn’t enjoy that?

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Sleep tight.