Sunday, July 08, 2007

Reinventing the blogger: from poetry to fiction

In July 2006, I made a conscious decision to post only experimental poems on this blog. In my evolution as a poet, 2006 was the most important year. I benefited immensely from my association with Thomas Lux, poet in residence at Georgia Tech. I also had the opportunity of working with Stuart Dischell at the Sarah Lawrence Summer Seminar for Writers, and Chard DeNiord who was a visiting professor (McEver Chair) in Poetry at Tech. This June I returned to the Sarah Lawrence for another week of poetry, workshops, and had the chance of learning from Stephen Dobyns. (he writes fiction as well as poetry and has the book of essasy Best Words, best order, which is essential read for any poet). All the established poets have drilled similar ideals and ideas into my head: READ Read read Read READ; read good poetry; read good fiction; REVISE, avoid cliches, avoid sentimentality, and so on.

But can you learn how to write a poem? Certainly. If I was a person who had a natural sense of beat and step for dancing, I realize, my teachers trained me or inspired me to pick up the formal style of salsa, balle, tango and so on. My natural talent, with their direction, is hopefully progressing towards an ideal I aspire for. A consequence of this seriousness for the craft is my inability to leave my good work on this blogsite. Once published online, the poems become useless for print media, and so from now on, I will save all my work for submissions, and this means the poetry section of this blog will not be updated much. If at all, I will post some translations, etc. We'll see.

From the beginning of the year, I have tried posting fiction. I think my prose is at a much younger stage of development than my poetry, and hence I will try to post more fiction, as short stories and maybe as short novellas. The experimental nature of the posts now and earlier means I value every criticism that comes my way. The harsher the better.

Book reviews, movie reviews, occasional remarks about social and political issues and random posts about anything that interests me that day will continue.

I have removed some of the old poems. My apologies to anyone who goes to the poems that now say "Under revision." I have more than 100 poems archived online in some way or the other. Hopefully I will make a transition to print media soon. Cheers to new beginnings!

1 comment:

Proma said...

Point noted !