Hello, all. It’s Day Seven of NaPoWriMo — one week in, three-and-change to go. I hope you’ve had fun during our first week.
Our featured journal for Day 7 is The Dead Mule School of Southern Literature, which has published NaPoWriMo-er Patricia Johnson, and recently ran an online chapbook of poetry by Shann Palmer, a longtime NaPoWriMo-er who passed away late last year.
Our featured participant for the day is if we sink, where the poems veer blend a breathless Beat-poetry style with effective use of repetition and memory.
Today’s prompt is to write a love poem . . . but the object of the poem should be inanimate. You can write a love poem to your favorite pen, the teddy bear you had as a child (and maybe still have), or anything else, so long as it’s not alive! Happy writing.
Welcome back for Day Six of NaPoWriMo. Yesterday’s prompt was a bit of a doozy, so I’ve something much more simple lined up for today.
Our featured journal for the day is Stone Crowns. This online magazine is focused on young adult readers and has published NaPoWriMo-er Veronica Hosking (who was also our featured participant for Day 1). Check out the magazine’s submission guidelines here.
Today’s featured participant is Coordinated Mayhem, whose golden shovel for Day Five is based on Carl Sandburg’s poem, Fog.
And now, the (as always, optional) prompt. We got rather complicated with yesterday’s prompt, so today’s is much simpler. Take a good look outside your window. Spend a minute or so jotting down all the nouns you see outside. Tree. Car. Bus. Dog. Then spend a minute or so writing down all the colors you see. Finally, think about taking place outside. Is the wind blowing? “Blow.” Is someone walking their dog? “Walk.” Spend a minute or so writing down these verbs. Now you’ve got a whole list of words from which to build a poem, mixing and matching as you go. Happy writing!
Welcome back, all, for Day Five of NaPoWriMo!
Today’s featured press is Zone 3, operating out of Austin Peay State University in Clarksville, Tennessee. Zone 3 both publishes books and a bi-annual magazine. The magazine’s annual poetry contest is now underway, offering a prize of$250 for the best poem.
Today’s featured participant is Six Guns and Soda Pop, where the daily poems combine to tell a story. In fact, the poems are picking up from a poem-story written during last year’s NapoWriMo!
Today’s prompt is a little complicated, which is why I saved it for a Saturday, in the hopes that you might have a little more time today than during a weekday. I think this is a very rewarding form, though, so I hope you’ll enjoy it! Today I challenge you to write a “golden shovel.” This form was invented by Terrance Hayes in his poem, The Golden Shovel. The last word of each line of Hayes’ poem is a word from Gwendolyn Brooks’ poem We Real Cool. You can read Brooks’ poem by reading the last word of each line of Hayes’ poem! (In fact, you can do so twice, because Hayes, being ultra-ambitious, wrote a two-part golden shovel, repeating Brooks’ poem). Now, the golden shovel is a tricky form, but you can help keep it manageable by picking a short poem to shovel-ize. And there’s no need to double-up the poem you pick, like Hayes did. Here are a few possibilities to work from:
On the fruit stand.
We eat the smile
And spit out the teeth.
Their relationship consisted
In discussing if it existed.
My candle burns at both ends;
It will not last the night;
But ah, my foes, and oh, my friends—
It gives a lovely light!
-Edna St. Vincent Millay
Hello, all. It’s Day Four of NaPoWriMo. I hope your writing is going well.
Our featured press for the day is Bloof Books. Bloof’s publisher, Shanna Compton, has been doing NaPoWriMo since the very beginning and each year, she rounds up a group of Bloof authors to participate. You can follow their progress at here. Bloof publishes both chapbooks and full-length poetry collections. Bloof will hold an open reading period for chapbook manuscripts later this year — likely in June or July. Maybe your NaPoWriMo poems will result in just such a manuscript!
Today’s featured participant is Little Learner, whose ekphrastic poem for Day 1 uses parentheticals and indentations to create a sense of dramatic space, in some ways visually reflecting the monument that is the subject of the poem.
Today’s optional prompt is to write a lune. A lune is a sort of English-language variation on the haiku, meant to better render the tone of the Japanese haiku than the standard 5-7-5 format we all learned (and maybe loved) in elementary school. There are a couple of variants on the lune form, but just to keep things simple, let’s try the version developed by Jack Collum. His version of the lune involves a three-line stanza. The first line has three words. The second line has five, and the third line has three. You can write a poem that consists of just one stanza, or link many lune-stanzas together into a unified poem. Happy writing!
Today is the third day of NaPoWriMo. I hope you are having fun so far. I also wanted to remind everyone that you can follow along with NaPoWriMo via twitter and on Facebook – check out@napowrimo2014, and the NaPoWriMo facebook page.
I’m tooting my own horn a bit with today’s featured press – I hope you don’t mind too much! Operating out of the United Kingdom, Shearsman publishes a wealth of poetry books each year, as well as Shearsman magazine. Shearsman’s titles include books by authors throughout the English-speaking world, works in translation, and reprints of classics. And now the horn-tooting: Shearsman recently published my own second book. I couldn’t be happier to see it out from a press that is doing so much to make poems both new and old available to a global audience.
Our featured participant for Day Three is Scant Scintilla, offering found poetry, erasures, and “other attempts.” The poems here are built out of (and both revel in and deplore) the language of business, of news, and of the general internet insanity that is all around us.
And now, the (as always, optional) prompt. In keeping with today’s status as the third day of NaPoWriMo, I challenge you to write a charm – a simple rhyming poem, in the style of a recipe-slash-nursery rhyme. It could be a charm against warts, or against traffic tickets. It could be a charm to bring love, or to bring free pizzas from your local radio station. Here’s a little springtime example of my own concoction, inspired by what I hope turns out just to be hay-fever.
A Charm Against the Common Cold
Petals from a tulip,
Leather from a new whip,
Snow from years ago,
And a tiger’s left-most toe–
In no freezes steep me,
But from all sneezes keep me.
Welcome back for Day Two. I hope your initial day of writing went well.
Our featured journal today is Graze Magazine, which has published NaPoWriMoer Marilyn Rauch Cavicchia. Graze focuses on something near and dear to everyone’s hearts: eating. The magazine is reading for their October 2014 issue, so if you have a poem that fits with the magazine’s theme, you might consider sending it along.
Our featured participant for Day Two is Patrick Horgan’s napowrimo blog. Patrick’s poem for Day 1 pretty much expresses the statements of a little voice that starts piping up in my head every time I sit down to write. But that voice has gotten quieter over time; now it’s barely a whisper! Hopefully NaPoWriMo will help to calm down your inner “oh no, I’m writing poetry” voice, too. (Also, my apologies to Patrick if, by featuring his poem, I’ve turned a klieg-light on all his oh-noes)!
And now for our optional prompt. There are many good poems based on myths. Lots of these use Greek or Roman myths. Consider Tennyson’s Ulysees or this more modern example by A.E. Stallings. But today I challenge you to write a poem based on a non-Greco-Roman myth. You could write a poem inspired by Norse mythology, or perhaps by one of these creatures from Japanese legend. Every time and place and culture has its myths and legends, so there’s plenty to choose from. Happy writing!
Welcome, all, to the first day of NaPoWriMo!
Each day during the month of April, we’ll be featuring a participant’s blog, and a prompt. Something new we’ll also be doing this year is featuring a small press or journal every day, with a focus on those presses/journals that have published NaPoWriMo participants. If you have an idea for a magazine or press that we should feature, please let us know at napowrimonet-AT-gmail-DOT-com.
Our featured press for the day is Ravenna Press. Ravenna recently published Crown, by Joanna Penn Cooper, who has been participating in NaPoWriMo for several years. In addition to publishing books, Ravenna also hosts/publishes three different online magazines, Anemone Sidecar, ALBA: a Journal of Short Poetry, and Snow Monkey. If you’ve got a poetry book manuscript that you are hoping to have published, Ravenna sponsors a yearly contest, the Cathlamet Prize for Poetry, and publishes the winning manuscript. In June, Ravenna will begin accepting entries for the 2014 Cathlamet Prize .
Our featured participant for the day is Veronica Hosking, who has been participating in NaPoWriMo since 2010. Welcome back!
And last, but not least, our prompt. Our prompts are, as always, optional. If you have your own plans for generating poems, or find prompts elsewhere that suit you better, that’s just fine. Our prompts are there just to help those who are having trouble getting inspired – if you’re full up on inspiration, there’s no need to follow them. With that out of the way, I’ve chosen something I hope will be fun and simple, to ease you into your first day. Today, I’d like you to go to Reb Livingston’s Bibliomancy Oracle. Clear your mind, push the button, and then write a poem based on the quotation that the oracle provides. Happy writing!
Tomorrow is the first day of NaPoWrimo. I hope you are feeling excited and inspired.
Today’s poetry resource is the Big Poetry Giveaway. Now in its fifth year, the Giveaway celebrates National Poetry Month by giving participants the opportunity to get books of poetry, for free!
I know that by the time I post the first “official” prompt, it will already have been April 1 for a while in some parts of the world, so here is an extra little prompt (totally optional — as all our prompts are) for those of you who are experiencing NaPoWriMo earlier than me.
The prompt for all you early birds is an ekphrastic poem – a poem inspired by or about a work of art. There’s no rules on the form for an ekphrastic poem, so you could write a sonnet or a haiku or free verse. Some well-known ekphrastic poems include Rilke’s Archaic Torso of Apollo and Keats’ Ode on a Grecian Urn. But ekphrastic poetry is alive and well today, too, as your efforts today will reflect.
NaPoWriMo begins in only two more days. You can follow along with the prompts here, but also via twitter and on Facebook – check out @napowrimo2014, and the NaPoWriMo facebook page. Here are two NaPoWriMo blog buttons, for those that are interested:
Continuing with our pre-April review of poetry resources, today I’d like to draw your attention to some of the many poetry-related podcasts out there. The Poetry Foundation has a whole page devoted to audio/podcasts. You can download recordings of readings, discussions between poets, and lectures on poetry. Another great resource is PennSound, where you’ll find many recordings of readings, interviews, and more.
NaPoWriMo is right around the corner. We’ve got more than 300 different sites in our participants’ list already, and we usually see a big spike in the last few days before April begins. I wonder how many we’ll get up to this year?
As you continue your preparations, why not take a look at some of the many poetry groups and movements that have existed? Perhaps you’ll be interested in the Poets Maudits of late 19th-century and early 20th-century France, or the Fugitive and Agragrian movements of the American south. Good general places to start exploring include the American Academy of Poets’ list of schools/movements, or Wikipedia’s list.
Poetry movements or schools are usually defined by their members’ similar aesthetic concerns, and often their significant personal interaction, as members help each other to draft and edit their poems, publish each other, and generally provide each other with moral support — and sometimes some mutually-inspiring interpersonal drama, too. But movements have often had a geographic element — the poets knew each other because they all lived, at one time or another, in the same place. But the internet has decreased the importance of geographic proximity, bringing together poets who otherwise might never have met, allowing them to argue, collaborate, and share ideas. Who knows — maybe a movement or two will be started by people who meet through NaPoWriMo. Only time will tell.