Poetry Practice Update

Time to update you on my nascent poetry practice:

You’ll recall that this past summer I took a big (albeit virtual) leap, and enrolled in an introductory-level online poetry writing class. After writing a new poem every week for my instructor’s feedback (and placing my work in the critique “booth” twice for my classmates’ responses as well), commenting on my classmates’ work, and absorbing our instructor’s weekly lectures (and the discussions he launched following each one), I was pleased with my progress.

I’ve even started submitting a few of my poems. And as of last week, I have also received the first rejections thereof (technically one rejection, covering three poems).

How’s that for living the life poetic? (That’s for you, Sage Cohen!)

Last week also saw the beginning of my second course (I promoted myself to the post-introductory class). Several of my classmates from last “term” have shown up on the roster, too, which is nice. And we have our same, solid instructor leading us. Which is also a good thing. (Curiously, this seems to be a more international group than the summer one. At least four of the 14 student poets are signing in from locations outside the United States [and someone located in the Midwest comes from another country, too]. I like that diversity.

And here’s another positive point to report: I saved $60 by enrolling early, and by virtue of my status as a “returning student.”

Already I’ve written another new poem (and received my instructor’s response to it), and submitted something from the summer for group critique. Meantime, I’m now waiting for responses from print and online journals considering my work in three genres! I’ll let you know how everything progresses!

9 thoughts on “Poetry Practice Update

  1. Samantha says:

    That sounds exciting! I’ve had a few poems published in anthalogies when I was in grade school, but something tells me they didn’t hold much value as almost anyone who entered got published.
    I’m glad you’ve found success in the class enough to take another. Good luck with your publishing!

  2. Erika D. says:

    Thanks so much for your kind words, Samantha!

  3. Sage says:

    Erika, Sounds like a grand living-the-life-poetic adventure! I’m delighted that you have enjoyed writing and submitting your poems enough to enroll in another class. Being a tri-genre writer is no small accomplishment! Thanks for sharing news of your poetry practice with us!

  4. Erika D. says:

    Thanks for writing in, Sage!

  5. Sage says:

    My pleasure! Do you find that your poetry writing informs or inspires your other work? I’m curious about your tri-genre experience…

  6. Erika D. says:

    You know, Sage, I think it’s a little early for me to be able to determine that. I know that when I have an idea, I’m now trying to think more carefully about the “right” genre to explore it. If that makes sense.

  7. Sage says:

    Makes perfect sense! I look forward to hearing how it all evolves!

  8. Lisa R. says:

    Hey, Erika, kudos. I took the bait not too long too. As a creative nonfiction writer in an MFA program surrounded by a huge poetry contingent, it only took 2 semesters for me to try some too.
    Mostly out of frustration, I took a few essays that just weren’t working, ones I couldn’t seem to nail down, and “distilled” them into poems. I was so surprised that it was such a a fun exercise.
    Either I’m onto something, or lucky (I hope both), as a few have already accepted for publication. So, it’s great to see these topics get some light, rather than live in my filing cabinet, and of course I can still go back and revise the essays, which now seem to be more clearly in focus.

    Love your blog and newsletter. Have fun with the poetry class.

  9. Erika D. says:

    Lisa, thanks so much for stopping by, and for your comment. I admire your blog(s), too, and am so interested to hear about your own experiences as a primarily-prose-writer-writing-poetry. I have a feeling you are on to something more than you’re just “lucky”! Look forward to following your path!

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