In the Inspiration Issue we present our eighteenth annual look at ten of the year’s best debut poets; a sea of ideas and recommendations for the year of writing ahead, including paintings, films, photographs, poetry rituals, and writing prompts; an interview with U.S. Poet Laureate Ada Limón; an essay on poetry as a kind of medicine for the soul; a guide to literary magazines as the gateway to a writing career; plus contest deadlines, recent winners, writers retreats, and more.
Start Dreaming: A Sea of Ideas for the Year of Writing Ahead
Twelve Things That Help Me Set My Table
The author of A Little Devil in America describes the stories behind unique objects that characterize his writing space and inspire his practice, including a vintage Prince poster he found at a local record store.
Twelve Ways to Create Space to Write No Matter Where You Are
The author of The Black Period recommends finding clarity on the page by making space for new ideas, methods, and experiences, including listening to your own writing read aloud to you.
Twelve Paintings That Make Me Want to Write Poetry
The poet and visual artist introduces paintings that turn his attention to poetry, including Crying Mary (Familiar) by Ava Tuitt and Double Elegy by Harmony Hammond.
Twelve (Soma)tic Poetry Rituals
The author of Amanda Paradise shares a list of rituals that may just startle you into writing some poetry, including practicing your acceptance speech for the Best Song of the Year Award.
Twelve Photographs That Make Me Want to Write About What It Means to Be Alive
A poet, writer, and photographer explores an assortment of photographs that spark reflection on themes such as liminality, history, and power, including Tommy Kha’s May (Betwixt) and Pixy Liao’s I Push You.
Twelve Poems to Compel a Poet
The author of An Internet of Containment shares a selection of poems that remind her of poetry’s many objectives and the valuable lessons they offer to emerging poets.
Twelve Films That Put Me in the Mood to Write
The author of Love and Other Poems introduces a dozen films that evoke emotional experiences ranging from fear to admiration, including Sofia Coppola’s Somewhere and Jean-Luc Godard’s Contempt.
Twelve Food-Related Writing Prompts
The author of World of Wonders uses food and drink to generate delicious writing prompts that will inspire a banquet of poems, essays, odes, and stories.
Twelve Tips for Collaborating with a Cat (Who Wants to Help You Write)
The author of How to Communicate shares his best tips on how to create a generative writing environment despite—or perhaps because of—his feline coworker’s presence.
Twelve Ways to Resurrect the Dead, Which Is to Say: To Write
The author of Voice of the Fish invites writers to confront mortality (and writing) with a collection of works addressing, mourning, and memorializing death.
Twelve Reasons You Should Keep Writing
The award-winning playwright, poet, and essayist shares her reasons to keep writing.
Ten debut poets who published in 2022, including James Fujinami Moore and No‘u Revilla, share inspiration, advice, and writers block remedies that sustain their writing.
News and Trends
As threats to freedom of expression rise around the world, organizations like the International Cities of Refuge Network and PEN America strive to support writers.
The first lines of a dozen noteworthy books, including Brotherless Night by V. V. Ganeshananthan and Decade of the Brain by Janine Joseph.
In response to a wave of book banning in libraries and schools across the United States, Brooklyn Public Library launched a program where young readers can borrow from the entire online collection at no cost.
A look at three new anthologies, including A House Called Tomorrow: 50 Years of Poetry From Copper Canyon Press and Relations: An Anthology of African and Diaspora Voices.
Services such as Findaway Voices and ACX, a subsidiary of Amazon’s Audible, enable independent authors to reach the expanding audience for audiobooks.
For more than a decade the nonprofit publisher Nomadic Press has accepted “invitations” to collaborate with writers in an effort to cross boundaries geographically, philosophically, and creatively.
The author of I|I reflects on the audacious, experimental, and singular qualities of the journals that first published excerpts from her book-length lyric essay.
To create her delicate book sculptures, Swedish artist Cecilia Levy considers the history, materiality, and composition of old books sourced from her surroundings.
The accomplished poet shares her thoughts on her new role and plans to raise awareness and appreciation of poetry at a national level.
The Practical Writer
A novelist explores how submitting to and publishing in literary journals can serve as an excellent education for writers while offering a sturdy platform upon which to build a promising career.
The Literary Life
The Time Is Now: Writing Prompts and Exercises
Write a poem in the form of an unapologia, a story about two characters who decide to keep a secret, or an essay about your personal history of Valentine’s Day.
Dear Poetry: Reflections on the Healing Power of Verse
The creator and host of the podcast Dear Poetry explores the practical power of poetry and contemplates the process of choosing poems to heal, comfort, and brighten daily life.