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Formalism, Tours, Awards and Thinking Poetics

Micheline Maylor at Canadian Poetries says this better than it is usually said:

it is a shame that New Formalism was thought of as a movement rather than a requirement of the skill set of a poet. Poetry is an interesting thing because it has to do with emotions. People feel something and then assume their deep emotions are valid in terms of poetics. Poetry, like any artistic skill requires practise, patience, and development. If you were a visual artist, it would be an expectation to learn, say anatomy, the human body, as a poet, nothing less than formalism should be expected.

Yet formalism, like criticism, can degenerate without feeling. When a poet can generate the skill of technique with the emotional charge of experience, then artistry is achieved. This balance is the type of poetry that generates the best charge.

In the same site is a new article on how’d you get that gig? by Kimmy Beach

Is only the impartial judgement of strangers that which can assess value and anyone who cares, lies and helps shoddiness for personal gain? Would that work? Why would you spend time with that which you think is poor and put your name behind people you don’t respect? As a system that would bog on every level.

Dismissing publishing as incestuous relationships is common. This article focuses on relationships and community. One moves with a cohort of people who are at the same stage of craft and cooperatively as group or pack you help one another forward.

Relationship building in the literary world is not a shmooze-fest. Believe it or not, we writers can tell when we’re being played or sucked up to for our connections. We don’t really like it. We want long-lasting connections too: not fly-by-nighters who will hang around us long enough for us to do something for them and then flit off just as fast. We want new friends as well, and to be appreciated by people who aren’t into us because we might be able to help them get some big gig.

What else is new? It’s the season of new releases and awards for last year’s titles.

The Archibald Lampman Award finalists are: Christine McNair for Conflict (Toronto: BookThug), Nina Berkhout for elseworlds (Woodstock: Seraphim Editions) and E. Russell Smith for Petroglyph Beach (Haliburton: The RightEyedDeer Press) with the award to be given at Raw Sugar on the 17th.

The Ottawa Book Awards have announced the finalists with poetry rolled into fiction for these: Scott Fotheringham for The Rest is Silence (Goose Lane Editions), Missy Marston for The Love Monster (Esplanade Books), Nadine McInnis for Blood Secrets (Biblioasis), Christine McNair for Conflict (Book Thug Publishing) and Dorothy Speak for Reconciliation (Dorothy Speak) with the award given at the Shenkman Centre on the 22nd.

Some poetry stays around.

Next May in Oxford UK, John Clare in Space:

This two-day conference at Oxford Brookes University seeks to explore the work, life, contexts and culture of the English poet, John Clare (1793–1864). Clare died in Northampton on 20 May 1864. 150 years after his death, delegates are asked to explore the places and spaces of Clare’s life and work, and the broad dimensions of his engagement with traditions across literary, rural and folk cultures, and to investigate the reasons Clare might be increasingly relevant to contemporary culture.

You don’t have to go that far to think poetics. You could stay in your chair or from anywhere. But you also can pop out around Ottawa.

Factory Reading Series: Talking Poetics is back for another instalment this November. Thursday, November 21, 2013, at Raw Sugar at 7pm, with lectures/talks on writing by Amanda Earl, Brecken Hancock and David O’Meara. It’s a fundraiser for Ottawa’s fourth annual VERSeFest Poetry Festival, March 2014.

Related posts:

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  2. Awards (cross posted ) The Governor General’s Literary Award, shortlist sounds pleasing, having heard a few read excerpts at the writers festival. It’s structure and aim seems clear, with 14 people...
  3. poetics reference University of Buffalo Poetics Listserv Poetic Groups and Movements...

Categories: Link Dump, PSA, Poetry.

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