Posted by: alinesoules | February 9, 2016

Back in the Land of the Living

poems_in_progressI may have been on hiatus for six weeks, but, happily, it’s been for a good cause—writing.  I spent the first part of the year preparing extensively for the visit of Jeffrey Levine, founder of Tupelo Press, poet extraordinaire, and mentor to many of us.  Jeffrey offers experiences (workshop, conference, other words don’t justice to the process he offers) and I was in a position to immerse myself in three two-day experiences while he was here.  Jeffrey has now offered these events for four years and each time I attend, I come away rejuvenated, readier than ever to write, and more able to get at what I truly want/need to say.  Last August (see previous posts), I participated in Tupelo Press’ 30/30 project, which helped me to generate new work at a tremendous pace (30 poems in 30 days).  I’ll throw out some of what I created, no doubt, but I have much raw material to work with and have been doing so for the last six months.  I also made the decision to spend at least one day a week generating new work rather than creating something and revising it before I moved on to the next thing.  The brain needs a mix of generation and revision, I learned—an invaluable lesson for my creative life.  Of course, after he left, I had to catch up on the rest of my life, but I seem to be coming up for air now and am working to get into a new writing routine that balances generation and revision more equitably.  I also find I enjoy writing even more in my new routine and that feeds into better work.  I’m enjoying the upswing and will participate in Tupelo’s May conference to keep me going.

Image credit:, accessed 9 Feb 2016.


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