Archive for August 2021

An interview from the archives with consultant and teacher Carolyn Conger, PhD, about her book Through the Dark Forest: Transforming Your Life in the Face of Death (Plume). 

This week’s Write the Book Prompt was inspired by the book, Through the Dark Forest: Transforming Your Life in the Face of Death. No matter where you are in life - age-wise, health-wise, or otherwise - this week consider what you’ve left unfinished so far in your life, and what you would like to do about it. Maybe also keep in mind how you have navigated the pandemic, and whether the past year and a half have made you feel more vulnerable. Write about all the things that come up as you invite these thoughts and feelings.

Good luck with your work in the coming week, and tune in next week for another prompt or suggestion.

 

Music Credit: Aaron Shapiro

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Tony Trigilio (8/16/21)

Poet, editor, scholar, and musician Tony Trigilio, whose new collection is Proof Something Happened, winner of the 2020 Marsh Hawk Poetry Prize.

This week’s Write the Book Prompt was generously suggested by my guest, Tony Trigilio. This prompt is adapted from John Daido Loori's The Zen of Creativity: Cultivating Your Artistic Life. Sit with an object/memory/experience until it begins to reveal itself to you -- its details, contours, emotions, and so on. Be open to the possibility that you might need to sit for a long time. As you get more comfortable with the object's familiar contours, the odd, strange, subtle, mysterious, and absurd (and equally-as-real) aspects of this object of your mind will reveal themselves. Express these in a poem - any form, shape, structure, tone, or pitch. You are writing about "what else" the object is, and likely also writing about "what it is not." Like a painter working with negative space, this approach can help you discover the fullest sense of your subject matter.

Good luck with your work in the coming week, and tune in next week for another prompt or suggestion.

 

Music Credit: Aaron Shapiro

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Best-selling author Caroline Leavitt, whose novel With or Without You just came out in paperback (Algonquin Books). 

This week’s Write the Book Prompt was generously offered by my guest, Caroline Leavitt. Write a page about two people who are in love without mentioning passion, desire, kids or any other words associated with love.

Good luck with your work in the coming week, and tune in next week for another prompt or suggestion.

 

Music Credit: Aaron Shapiro

690

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Interview from the archives with poet and prose writer Barbara Henning, regarding her book A Swift Passage (Quale Press).

I have family visiting this week - lots of loved ones filling our two guest rooms, and sleeping on the floor in the finished basement, and in one case staying in the dining room. It’s a lot of fun, and a bit of a clown car. Today’s Write the Book Prompt is to imagine a house full of visitors. What might look like in your case? Where will everyone sleep? How do they all get along? What do you feed them? Do any old rivalries resurface? Old flames? Does anything happen to create a moment of excitement or adventure? How would you establish the characteristics of each person to turn these visitors into interesting characters in a work of prose or poetry?

Good luck with your work in the coming week, and tune in next week for another prompt or suggestion.

 

Music Credit: Aaron Shapiro

689

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