What we're about

Our Meetups are classes on writing poetry for publication: a boot camp for poets. In each session we'll discuss what kind of poetry gets published, how to write poetry that gets published, and workshop each other's poetry. We'll examine examples of great contemporary poetry and dissect its elements in order to understand what makes it great. We'll also discuss books like Richard Hugo's "Triggering Town".

The classes are for people interested in improving their poems, with the goal of getting their work published.

In his book on writing poetry, “The Triggering Town”, Richard Hugo said poets often find it hard to move forward in a poem, find it difficult to move away from the initiating subject: the trigger that prompted the poet to write the poem. The poet writes the title: “Autumn Rain.” They write two or three good lines about Autumn Rain. Then it gets hard. They cannot find anything more to say about Autumn Rain so they make up things, they go abstract, they start telling us the meaning. They have an urge to explain it to us. The mistake is that they feel compelled to stick with the trigger and keep writing about Autumn Rain, because it is the subject. But it isn’t really the subject. You don’t know what the subject is, and the moment you run out of things to say about Autumn Rain you should start talking about something else. In fact, it’s a good idea to talk about something else before you run out of things to say about Autumn Rain.

Instructor's Bio: Mark Lee Webb received his MFA from Queens University of Charlotte. He has two chapbooks: WHATEVERITS (Finishing Line Press, 2014) and The Weight of Paper (ELJ Publications, 2014). His poetry has received two Pushcart Prize nominations, and appears in many literary journals, including Ninth Letter, Rattle, Reed, Columbia Journal, The Louisville Review, Aeolian Harp, Soundings Review, Glassworks, Chiron Review, The Baltimore Review, RipRap, Star 82 Review, and many others.

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