Poetry is highly personal and sometimes time, place, subject specific so that a literary, contextualised poetic critique is not necessarily what is being sought, but rather an approval or appreciation of point of view or ‘artistry’.
Mardibooks has put together the following tips together for those budding poets out there who may need a little extra help.
Are you writing to entertain? Poetry is the original stand-up and dramatic gig.
We come from an oral tradition and poetry flows from before Ovid’s high art, as a record of communication, of story-telling. Poetry has traditionally been the tool of leaders as much as of followers.
Is your poetry personal? A diary or record of self-reflection, discovery? Poetry is of course cathartic, it enables us to focus simply on an idea and consider it from all angles.
Play, experiment with you words, you are a craftsman, word-smithing images.
The rules of syntax and grammar may be suspended, where appropriate, to create a more refined meaning.
Less is more, so constriction in sentences and morphing of words is entirely permissible.
Consider your word order carefully; utilize a thesaurus more than a rhyming dictionary. Above all, the language must reflect your voice and be credible and genuine.
Is your audience personal or public? Where are they? Have you considered their demographics and how they will interpret and respond to your ideas, imagery and language.
Read it loud to yourself… record it, listen back to it.
Have your ideas taken flight or are they still struggling with unnecessary undercarriage? Are you saying what you mean? Very occasionally you might create a poem that is perfect first time…
Here are 5 tips to start off the writing process if you are struggling to get something on the page!
1. Do your research: Get to know other writers who have already written some poetry and find out how they approached writing poetry (looking at the Mardi community would be a great place to start). Start reading poetry to gauge an idea of what other people are writing and look into any poetry writing classes and workshops that you might be able to attend.
2. Sensitivity: find out what is important and beautiful to you and this can act as your inspiration for your poetry.
3. Be open minded: Always look for opportunities to find inspiration for your poetry, keeping an open mind will mean that you will open to new ideas that may present themselves.
4. Time: Set yourself goals and targets for writing, so that you are constantly reviewing your work and jotting down your ideas.
5. No one-take poetry: It’s very unlikely that you will have written a masterpiece on your first attempt…unfortunately! Be prepared to rewrite your poetry in order for it to be the best it can be.
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