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The Time Is Now, Week 43
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mgannon@pw.org

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Oct 25, 2012, 5:00 AM

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The Time Is Now                 October 25, 2012  
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University of Tampa MFA in Creative Writing
Welcome to The Time Is Now. For even more inspiration, check out our Tumblr, Lines We Live By, a collection of excerpts from our favorite books.

Poetry Prompt

Find a text that is completely unrelated to what you normally read--a how-to manual, a 1950s interior design book, an old encyclopedia, a white paper on social media--and use it as the source of an erasure poem. Read through several pages and underline words and phrases that appeal to you and that relate to each other. Using a marker or Wite-Out, begin to delete the words around those you underlined, leaving words and phrases that you might want to use. Keep deleting the extra language, working to construct poetic lines with the words you've chosen to keep. 

 

Fiction Prompt

Using magazine clippings; photographs; found or created notes, letters, and postcards; and other items, construct a story from ephemera. Put the items in box and add to it as the week goes on. When you feel that you've compiled enough, write the story relying on the ephemera as a guide. 

 

Creative Nonfiction Prompt

One of the most dangerous pitfalls of creative nonfiction can be chronology, and some of the best essays are written in a nonlinear fashion. Think of a story that you know by heart--maybe a memory from your childhood, of finding first love, or of the birth of a child--and try to retell it without using typical chronologically. Start from the end and work your way back, or alternate between scenes of present and past. The result should be an essay that keeps the reader always moving but never quite sure of what comes next.

 

The Best Books for Writers 
Each week we recommend a book--a newly published title or an invaluable classic--that will help you on your writing journey. This week's pick: 

The Writer's Notebook  

 

The Writer's Notebook II: Craft Essays From Tin House (Tin House Books, 2012), introduction by Francine Prose

  

  

  

  

  

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The future of independent publishing, a profile of National Book Award nominee Louise Erdrich, an interview with graphic novelist Chris Ware, plus over 85 writing contests with upcoming deadlines, and more
in the November/December 2012
issue of Poets & Writers Magazine.
Poets & Writers is the primary source of information, support, and guidance for creative writers. Founded in 1970, it is the nation's largest nonprofit literary organization for poets, fiction writers, and creative nonfiction writers. Learn more at pw.org.

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