Being a poet sometimes feels like running a manufacturing business – but without the use of Swarfega to wash your hands at the end. From the normally cleaner raw material of thoughts and ideas a production line extends through drafting, editing, reviewing, and workshopping to the delivery of poems to magazines, literary journals, and competitions. … Continue reading Poetry Inc. – Part One
In his book on the neuroscience of music, Daniel Levitin states: “As the music unfolds the brain constantly updates its estimates of when new beats will occur and takes satisfaction in matching a mental beat with a real-in-the-world one and takes delight when a skillful musician violates that expectation in an interesting way.” As with … Continue reading Metre in Sonnets – Part Two
This is only a very brief introduction to the basics of metre and rhythm; enough to help you start thinking about sonnets and how to write their lines whilst paying attention to these aspects. First, we’ll look at regularity of rhythm and then, in part two, the effect of variation. People feel rhythm quite instinctively … Continue reading Metre in Sonnets – Part One
In this series I have written about the creative process of poetry in some detail, but I would like to add some thoughts on the specific issues around writing sonnets. These questions to yourself come before you start to focus on elements of diction, rhetoric, syntax, or trope. The initial question is why have you … Continue reading Why Write a Sonnet?
How do you judge your success as a poet? It is certainly not in terms of an annual income from your activities, nor the number of poems written per annum. I believe it is fundamentally about your work being read or heard appreciatively by your readership. It starts with positive feedback from peers and friends … Continue reading Success as a Poet