Friday, April 30, 2021

New Book Coming Soon: The Strategic Poet

Not the real cover!

I am up to my neck working on a new craft book, The Strategic Poet. This one will be similar to my previous craft books—The Crafty Poet, The Crafty Poet II, and The Practicing Poet—as the emphasis will be on gaining mastery of the elements of poetry. Like the earlier books, it will be aimed at practicing poets who already know the basics and want to move beyond them. But this book will also include some unique features. Instead of Craft Tips, there will be Craft Talks. These will be sharply focused on a particular craft strategy. I solicited these from poets I love and am thrilled with the lineup. 

Again there will be model poems, each followed by an analysis of the poem's craft elements and then a prompt based on those elements. A new feature of this book will be Commentaries in each section. Each commentary will be written by a poet on some specific aspect of craft in his/her model poem. This book, like the earlier ones, will include Bonus Prompts, but they will be done by poets other than me—and there will be more of them, a total of 39. These I solicited from poets who are both outstanding poets and teachers. While the earlier books each had 10 sections, this one will have 13, a baker's dozen. A total of 87 accomplished poets will contribute the model poems, craft talks, commentaries, and bonus prompts.

Finally, each of the 36 prompts that follow the model poems will be followed by 2 sample poems. These sample poems will be written to the prompts (at least as a starting point) and submitted for consideration.

Model Poem Poets (each poem is followed by analysis of its craft elements and then a prompt based on those elements)
Melanie McCabe

Jesse Graves

Brad Aaron Modlin

Catherine Pierce

Craig van Rooyen

George Drew

Pamela Baggett

Sara Moore Wagner

Lynn McGee 

Kate Gaskin

Ada Limón

Lois Marie Harrod

George Bilgere

Camille Dungy

Robert Fillman

Sean Shearer

Dean Young

Frank X Walker

Matthew Olzmann

Tina Kelley

David O’Connell

Dara Elerath

Melanie Figg

Traci Brimhall

Nicole Callihan

Adam Tavel

James Scruton

Rob Shapiro

Jared Harél

Jessica Piazza

Beth Copeland

Elise Hempel

Carolyne Wright
Matthew Yeager

J.P. Grasser

Craft Talk Poets (each talk targets and deepens the section’s main craft strategy)
Ellen Bass

Todd Kaneko

Lauren Camp

Annie Finch

David Graham

Danusha Laméris

Jan Beatty

Meg Kearney

Peter Murphy

Dion O’Reilly

Marilyn L. Taylor

Diane Seuss

Tami Haaland  

Commentary Poets (each poet offers a focused commentary on a single craft element in his/her poem)
Jesse Graves
Craig van Rooyen
Sara Moore Wagner
Lois Marie Harrod
Camille Dungy
Sean Shearer
Tina Kelley
Dara Elerath
Melanie Figg
James Scruton
Jared Harél
Beth Copeland
J.P. Grasser

Bonus Prompt Poets (3 bonus prompts in each section focus on the section’s main craft strategy)
Lance Larsen
Caitlin Doyle
Adele Kenny
Michael T. Young
J.C. Todd
Cat Doty
Joy Gaines-Friedler
Kerrin McCadden
BJ Ward
Patricia Clark
Jennifer Franklin
Jeffrey Bean
Allison Joseph

Sample Poem Poets
The date of publication is currently unknown. The manuscript is progressing nicely, but there's still a lot of work to come in and I still have to issue a call for submissions for the sample poems and read the submissions and make selections. Then there will be a huge editing round, followed by a huge proofreading round or two or three. Credits are underway as are the bios, but they remain incomplete. Then there will be a cover to design. But I'm hoping to have this book out in the fall.

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