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Dir3foxx
Spencer Schoen

May 7, 2013, 3:23 AM

Post #1 of 12 (1597 views)
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Young poet! need guidance... Can't Post

Hey y'all! Spencer E. Schoen here! I'm a young poet, and I am really raw and undeveloped... My style and range of subjects is all over the place! @_@ I would greatly appreciate someone to help refine me and make the publication world not so god damn scary for me. Seriously. Every time I think about submitting a poem or two to a magazine, I freak out and don't feel good enough, nor that my poetry is, or will be, ever wanted. HELP!


pongo
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e-mail user

May 7, 2013, 9:07 AM

Post #2 of 12 (1576 views)
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Re: [Dir3foxx] Young poet! need guidance... [In reply to] Can't Post

Welcome, Spencer.

It sounds as though you need a mentor. Have you taken any courses or workshops in writing poetry? That's the best way to find a mentor, I think, although peer groups can also serve the same purpose. Look around through local colleges and junior colleges, or see if the library or one of the bookstores has a poetry group. Check with Meetup.com, too. Even Craigslist sometimes has notices of poetry groups forming.

If it'S within your budget, consider taking a weeklong workshop, or even a weekend one. One of my poetry groups (I have three that meet monthly) came out of a weekend workshop that we all attended.

I think it's very important -- at least it was for me -- to have a writing community where everyone is around the same level and can grow together. It's like playing golf: if I go out with people who are a lot better than I am, my game falls apart because I'm trying too hard to be like them. If I go out with people who are just a little better than I am (maybe in only some parts of their game), I can learn from them and work to reach their level and play a little better than I usually do.


The Review Mirror, available at www.unsolicitedpress.com

Difficult Listening, Sundays from ten to noon (Central time), at http://www.radiofreenashville.org/.

http://home.comcast.net/~david.m.harris/site/


143448

e-mail user

May 7, 2013, 10:16 AM

Post #3 of 12 (1580 views)
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Re: [Dir3foxx] Young poet! need guidance... [In reply to] Can't Post

there is nothing wrong with your poetry. you are simply young. as a craft, poetry takes time. most of us who call our work "poetic" needed years to find ourselves. subject, style, voice all arrive after decades of sweat and trial and error. unless you intend to go the way of keats and shelley, and remain beautiful for the grave, let the time take for itself as much as it needs. mentors are nice; mfa programs and conferences are great. but the best mentors will tell you they can merely begin a process, or allow respite that might inform a larger journey, not teach you. going to them thinking they will teach you how to be a poet sets both you and they up for defeat. accordingly to your comments, that is the last thing you may want.

you do have the makings of a poet--you view your work as "not quite there." every poet, including simic, walcott, levine, tretheway, and others, views his poetry as "not quite there." a poet learns to become better by trying to make his poetry better. good lord willing, that will continue until each of us breathes her last. any writer tries improving the work...the only work coming from us that enjoys completeness without anything further gets flushed down the toilet.

werewolves do not exist; neither do magic bullets. only work. invest yourself in doing the work.

by work, i mean reading and writing. read every poet, hear every poet imaginable, from every part of the world. buy books of poetry from copper canyon, the university of pittsburgh press, wesleyan university press...listen to the oral poetry of the middle east and of the near east. go to poetry readings. do not mistake the stuff produced by popular music and praised by popular culture as "poetry." poetry has never been popular in the western tradition, nor is it something that enjoys commercial success, generally, though some interesting poets, such as collins, have been commercially successful. listen to everyday speech, as you go about in this world...sometimes, great poetry eminates from imbeciles.

by writing, i mean keep a journal. keep in that journal your thoughts and list interesting phrases and turns of phrase that catch your eat. every person who has dreamed of being called by someone "a poet" has kept such a journal. we have kept them for decades. and, upon opening them, every now and then, we see our poem.


j. e. robinson


Dir3foxx
Spencer Schoen

May 11, 2013, 9:32 PM

Post #4 of 12 (1481 views)
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Re: [pongo] Young poet! need guidance... [In reply to] Can't Post

Thank you, pongoA mentor does sound great. But I fear that my style and influence would be sapped from him, and i would be just another imitation. I prefer originality. I have never taken any courses, but I wish to do so, and I certainly will look into it. never heard of meetup.com, i will check there too. I really want to connect with a poetry community. I know my town has a poetry festival every october. One of my goals is to be featured there...
Thank you again pongo.


pongo
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e-mail user

May 11, 2013, 9:44 PM

Post #5 of 12 (1480 views)
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Re: [Dir3foxx] Young poet! need guidance... [In reply to] Can't Post

A good mentor won't let you become an imitation. Of course, finding a good mentor is even harder than finding a mentor.


The Review Mirror, available at www.unsolicitedpress.com

Difficult Listening, Sundays from ten to noon (Central time), at http://www.radiofreenashville.org/.

http://home.comcast.net/~david.m.harris/site/


Dir3foxx
Spencer Schoen

May 11, 2013, 11:11 PM

Post #6 of 12 (1477 views)
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Re: [143448] Young poet! need guidance... [In reply to] Can't Post

I have been hanging around a few older friends lately, and they always say just give it time. And thank you for reaffirming that. I have simply begun my journey and i have been too busy wanting the destinantion and not thinking about my next step forward, so thank you again.


143448

e-mail user

May 12, 2013, 11:02 AM

Post #7 of 12 (1460 views)
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Re: [Dir3foxx] Young poet! need guidance... [In reply to] Can't Post

remember that poetry is an old-fashioned journey. neither transporters nor rocket ships nor jet planes nor cars nor trains can get you where you want to go. no one can carry you. if you want to be a real poet, or any kind of poet, you must walk on your own two feet. the journey is long and it is very painful, but, once there, the ground on which you stand is yours. you will know you are there because you will breathe anew. careful: that fresh air, the new blood in your veins, will dizzy you. but it is from that place that the world will hear your barbaric yawp, and it will know to listen.

j. e. robinson


j. e. robinson


Dir3foxx
Spencer Schoen

May 12, 2013, 1:18 PM

Post #8 of 12 (1454 views)
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Re: [143448] Young poet! need guidance... [In reply to] Can't Post

All I do is walk. I walk to work, I walk to stores, I walk for the sake of the walk. My feet are blistered and my feet are torn to pieces, skin shaved off to expose subcutaneous levels. I know much of the importance of patience along my journey, whether it be to work around the corner or to an event far away. I await the day of my promised land, but i know i should look down and plan my next step precariously.


143448

e-mail user

May 12, 2013, 2:24 PM

Post #9 of 12 (1453 views)
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Re: [Dir3foxx] Young poet! need guidance... [In reply to] Can't Post

lol...i like you, kid! you are going to write some kick-ass poetry!


j. e. robinson


R.A. Stewart



May 15, 2013, 3:06 PM

Post #10 of 12 (1413 views)
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Re: [Dir3foxx] Young poet! need guidance... [In reply to] Can't Post

If I could just put in a word here, don't be worried about imitation. It's one of the important ways we learn. If you've ever played a musical instrument or learned a language (and of course you've learned at least one), you know on reflection that a huge amount of imitation was a vital part of the process.

If I leaf through what I wrote as a young man (what wasn't mercifully lost, that is), I can pretty much identify what I was reading at the time. Bad imitation Eliot, bad imitation Crane, bad imitation cummings, bad imitation Auden, bad imitation Frost, bad imitation generalized-Beat ... I could go on and on. And on.

But I don't regret a line, even though I wouldn't want anyone to read many of those lines now; my only regret is that I didn't perpetrate a great many more of them. It was all practice, you see. It was all learning how others have done it, how language works, how a voice works in poetry. And gradually, after many years--it does take years, and much, much practice--gradually my own voice began to emerge.

I don't think of that voice as some inherent thing that I "discovered." I suppose it was in part, but for practical purposes--for the purposes of learning the craft--that was a useless way to think about it. I could not have written in my own voice when I was young, because I had to imitate, experiment, practice, write trash, imitate, practice, experiment, write trash, write more trash, experiment, imitate some more, find some other mentor and imitate yet more--I had to develop the voice that I, and I think at least some of my two or three readers, recognize as mine.

Originality is not a goal; it's an inevitable by-product if you do the work with persistence, intelligence, and dedication.



alamana
Jennifer Brown


May 15, 2013, 4:34 PM

Post #11 of 12 (1413 views)
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Re: [Dir3foxx] Young poet! need guidance... [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
But I fear that my style and influence would be sapped from him, and i would be just another imitation. I prefer originality.


I understand Proust taught himself to write by doing pastiches. . .


Be regular and orderly in your life, that you may be violent and original in your work. -- Flaubert

http://www.jenniferkirkpatrickbrown.com


PoetryAssessor
Michael Dalvean

May 31, 2013, 6:21 AM

Post #12 of 12 (1289 views)
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Re: [Dir3foxx] Young poet! need guidance... [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
Hey y'all! Spencer E. Schoen here! I'm a young poet, and I am really raw and undeveloped... My style and range of subjects is all over the place! @_@ I would greatly appreciate someone to help refine me and make the publication world not so god damn scary for me. Seriously. Every time I think about submitting a poem or two to a magazine, I freak out and don't feel good enough, nor that my poetry is, or will be, ever wanted. HELP!



1) Use concrete language;
2) Don't use too many emotion words;
3) Write in the past tense.

For more information on how to write like a 'professional' see

https://digitalcollections.anu.edu.au/...Contemporary2013.pdf


Also, if you want to select the best poems to send to magazines, publishers etc, run all your poems through the following application www.poetryassessor.com. Select only those that score above 0 (the higher the score the better). BY doing this you will ensure that the poems you submit have the characteristics of well established professionals.

Hope this helps,

The Poetry Assessor.

Main Index » About the Speakeasy » Introductions

 


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