Friday, September 17, 2010

Back to School

On Tuesday, I had the chance to speak with Jacqueline Jones LaMon’s MFA students at Adelphi University. We sat around a big conference table and talked about Underlife and poetry in general. The whole experience reminded me of my workshop days at NYU, sitting around a table exchanging poems and offering critiques. Ahh, memories ...

The grad students asked terrific questions, everything from how the poems were arranged in the book to being truthful in poems. They kept me on my toes, stumped me a few times, but it was great fun reading and discussing my work with such an engaged group.

Wish I had taken a picture of the class for the blog. Drat!

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My advice to the students, besides keep writing no matter what, was to participate in the poetry community. I encouraged them to go to readings, support each other when they read publicly, buy books, organize or volunteer at a literary event, subscribe to literary publications, etc. This is how poetry grows and thrives.

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Don’t forget the Salem Lit Fest is happening this weekend. There’s a kickoff event tonight at Cornerstone Books. Hope to see you there!

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Still working on a fellowship application. This is the last day to turn it in. Nothing like procrastination as a motivating factor. *sigh*

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Happy Friday, folks!

3 comments:

Jessie Carty said...

Sounds like good times! I was invited to skypE with an undergrad class but skype failed miserably so we ended up having them see me type on google chat. They still had great questions though! I so hope I have a chance to teach creative writers someday :)

Bethany said...

Hi January,
Thank you so much for visting our class. (I sat to Jaci's right and asked you about your writing process)I really appreciated how open you were and the great advice that you offered. I enjoyed your collection of poems tremendously. Keep up the great writing.
Bethany

January said...

Hi Bethany. It was a pleasure spending a few hours with you and your class. Made me miss my time as a student. Jaci is a wonderful teacher.

Enjoy this time to focus on your writing--it goes by so quickly.

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