Feed on
Posts

Archive for July 2012

Award-winning Vermont poet Jane Shore., author of That Said: New and Collected Poems, published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.

Today's Write The Book Prompt was suggested by my guest, Jane Shore. Two books that she very much appreciates are I REMEMBER, by the poet Joe Brainard, and THE POETICS OF SPACE, by Gaston Bachelard. In I REMEMBER, Joe Brainard starts off every sentence with the words "I remember." He then fills out each sentence with a specific memory. Gaston Bachelard's book talks about the power that various spaces have.

In keeping with lessons she's learned from reading those books, Jane Shore offers the following writing exercise to students in her classes. Consider the house you lived in when you were maybe seven or eight, and mentally go through every room in the house: open every drawer, every closet. Consider all the clothes in the closet. Think about the bicycle, the dolls, the toys. In the kitchen, open the refrigerator, look at the name of the milk company printed on the milk carton. What kind of ice cream is in the freezer? What kind of leftovers are in the fridge? What is the surface of the kitchen table? What does the floor look like? When you lived there, did you have a special cup you drank out of? She goes through the entire house in great detail: think about your mother's perfume, your old Halloween costumes, parties that your parents had, how you celebrated birthdays. Let the memories of that place in which you lived help you recall other memories. Take notes as you go, mentally, from front hall to powder room to den. And as you go, write about the details you rediscover.  Good luck with this prompt and tune in next week for another.

Music credits: 1) "Dreaming 1″ - John Fink; 2) "Filter" - Dorset Greens (a Vermont band featuring several former South Burlington High School students).

00:0000:00

Read Full Post »

Award-winning Canadian author Douglas Glover, on his latest book: a collection of essays on writing, Attack of the Copula Spiders, published by Biblioasis.

Today's Write The Book Prompt is to write what Douglas Glover playfully calls "a but-construction." In his new book, ATTACK OF THE COPULA SPIDERS, he writes: "Imagine any simple declarative sentence, and add the word but to the end." The example Douglas offers is: "The barn was red, but..." Now keep writing. See what complexity you might be able to introduce to this sentence, or another of your own devising, simply by adding the word "but." As he explains in the book, "I wrote the word 'but' and then had to write something else; the blank space demands completeness. I had no idea what I might put in there before I wrote the words. The result is pure invention, discovery, and rather fun."

Good luck with this prompt and tune in next week for another.

Music credits: 1) "Dreaming 1″ - John Fink; 2) "Filter" - Dorset Greens (a Vermont band featuring several former South Burlington High School students).

00:0000:00

Read Full Post »

Award-winning writer Glen Finland, author of Next Stop: A Memoir of Family, published by AmyEinhornBooks/Putnam. The book is a Summer 2012 Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers Pick.

Today's Write The Book Prompt was suggested by my guest, Glen Finland. Describe the precise moment at a time in your life when you realized you had to let go of someone or something. And what gave you the courage to do it?

Good luck with this prompt and tune in next week for another.

00:0000:00

Read Full Post »

An interview from the archives with award-winning poet Clare Rossini.

Today's Write The Book Prompt was inspired by the interview you heard today. Clare Rossini's poem "BIOLOGY LAB, ST. JOSEPH'S SCHOOL FOR GIRLS" concerned just that, a biology class at a Catholic high school for girls. Your prompt for this week, then, is to take that inspiration as a point of departure. Choose a subject: math, biology, English, chemistry, gym, Spanish or French or Latin. Do you remember sitting in that classroom? What did it look like? What did the teacher act like? Who sat next to you - your best friend, or someone you didn't much like? Did the class inspire you? Did you look forward to it? Why or why not? Write a poem or a scene, using these memories as inspiration. Be sure to include sensory details in the piece. Try to write in such a way that the reader will know just what it felt like to sit, for example, in Mr. Wong's algebra class as he shot a rubber band at you after you misstated the quadratic formula.

Good luck with this prompt and tune in next week for another.

Music credits: 1) "Dreaming 1″ - John Fink; 2) "Filter" - Dorset Greens (a Vermont band featuring several former South Burlington High School students).

00:0000:00

Read Full Post »