I’ve been doing something new this month: writing poetry. Lots of it. This is mostly (well completely) due to the free online class I won from Gotham Writers workshop. Thank you Gotham!
This is how the class works: When you sign up, you are given an ID and a password. You are then able to log in as a student and access what Gotham calls the blackboard. The blackboard is where, each week, the class meets. The teacher posts lectures there, while a frame below allows the class to post questions and engage in discussion. There is also a notebook feature, where you read assignments and submit work to the teacher and a booth feature where you critique the work of others.
I didn’t know much about poetry when I signed up. I don’t think I’d even written a poem since the fifth grade, but I wanted to try something new. I thought, what’s the harm in it? If I write a bunch of bad poems, I’ll just throw them out. Oddly, I think this was the main appeal for me. Because it’s hard to bring yourself around to feeling that way about a novel. You just don’t.
Anyway, the class has been an incredible amount of fun! The other students are friendly and positive. The teacher, Michael Montlack, is an accomplished poet and a wonderful teacher. I’m about halfway through the class right now (we’re at week 6) and already, I’ve learned so much about poetry and its forms and all the different types of really wonderful poets out there. I’ll save the specifics for another post, but I will say I’m really enjoying Elizabeth Bishop, and I’d only read one or two of her poems before the class began.
How about you? Have you taken an online course? Would you? Have you ever taken poetry?