audience Archive

So Long, Dear Writer

Author: | Categories: Reading No comments
  The poet C.K. Williams died this Sunday, September 20, 2015. For the last few months I’ve been enjoying a review copy of Farrar, Straus and Giroux’s beautiful new collection of Williams’ poems, the Selected Later Poems, but I’m finding that now, in light of Williams’ death, I can’t

Emily Dickinson: A Private Poet in the Digital Age?

Author: | Categories: Authors, Reading No comments
Walt Whitman once wrote, “To have great poets, there must be great audiences, too.” But around the same time Whitman wrote those words, living a just few states away from him was a great poet who had almost no audience whatsoever. She tended to send her poems only to a

The Best Writing Advice I Never Gave

Author: | Categories: Writing Advice 2 Comments
A while back a friend of mine contacted me with a good idea: he wanted to collect one piece of advice from a number of writers he knew and pass all of them on to his advanced undergraduate workshop students. If you’re anything like me, this is the kind

Writing in a Changing World: Craft, Readerships, and Social Media

Author: | Categories: Publishing, Writing, Writing Advice 3 Comments
What do you wish your MFA program had taught you? How is the literary world—and media in general—changing? How should we change with it? These are the questions that motivate Stephanie Vanderslice‘s work as a writer, professor, and HuffPost blogger. I heard Vanderslice speak at the International Great Writing Conference this June, where she

Don’t Look at the Comments! Or, Wait, Maybe You Should

Author: | Categories: Uncategorized 5 Comments
Remember the climactic scene from “Raiders of the Lost Ark”? The Nazis are about to open the ark and they have Indy and Marion tied up to that big post and as the ark starts to glow Indy says, “Marion, don’t look at it! Shut your eyes, Marion! Don’t

Why Poetry Can’t Find its Public

Author: | Categories: Uncategorized 47 Comments
Hey Poets. I was in LA last month for music work, and I think I found something you dropped: The public.  So—Maybe you weren’t sure when you lost it, but you seem pretty certain music stole it. Or film perhaps? Or YouTube cats? Meanwhile, poetry’s stayed alive. It’s been breeding

So… Readings. What’s the point?

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If you’re a writer, you’ve likely subjected yourself to awkward, lifeless Readings enough times to wonder whether there’s still a purpose for these mysterious liturgies. We probably don’t need an old time tent revival (I hope not!)… But asking, “what’s the point?” may be long overdue. What I mean is: perhaps who/whatever began

Giving a Reading? How Not to Panic.

Author: | Categories: Uncategorized 7 Comments
In my previous post, I discussed the crying shame that is the Public Reading. You commented, shared, and agreed. You asked how to feel more confident, use a microphone, give more creative readings, etc. I’ll tackle all of these over coming weeks – starting, today, with confidence. HAVE SOME COMPASSION.

Why Are Readings So Awkward?

Author: | Categories: Uncategorized 37 Comments
Hey Writing World. I love you. You’re brilliant. You make amazing things happen on a page. But you have NO IDEA what to do behind a microphone. And so many of your venues are grim! They make us forget that there’s ever been magic in words. Basically, there’s an