Youmans (pronounced like 'yeoman' with an 's' added) is the best-kept secret
among contemporary American writers. --John Wilson, editor, Books and Culture Marly Youmans is a novelist and poet out of sync with the times
but in tune with the ages. --First Things

Saturday, February 06, 2016

You asked, no. 9: resources

May your head be full of dreams!
Division page by Clive Hicks-Jenkins
for Maze of Blood.
Here's a reference list of critique and forum sites that I've made for the people on twitter and Facebook who ask me to read and critique their work. I'm afraid that I can't do such things for all who ask--I need to manage being a mother of three, hitting my deadlines, and accomplishing the writing and reading that I must do.

I think the best advice--advice I have often given--may be to get to know your regional poetry-and-fiction scene and area writers and poets. That way swapping work and critiquing can happen in a more natural way. I don't do that, but I imagine it's rather enjoyable if you don't--as I do--live in the middle of nowhere. But many people have little access to the kinds of events that occur in an urban area.

I'm not very good at telling people, NO. So here is a list of helpful places in lieu of a big fat NO. In other words, this is an attempt at a polite and helpful No, but thank you very much for thinking of me, and the very best of luck to you.

If you have a site, workshop, or person to recommend, please leave a comment.

ERATOSPHERE. FORMAL POETRY. I'm a member of the site, though I've never participated in the workshopping--just a tad too busy. But plenty of well-known writers of formal poetry have passed through its machinery, and people seem to love it. (I go by to see who has a new book, ask a question, see what the latest fracas is, etc.) www.eratosphere.ablemuse.com

ERATOSPHERE. FREE VERSE. Look for "Non-metrical Verse" in the forum topics. Workshopping of free verse. www.eratosphere.ablemuse.com

CRITTERS WORKSHOP. FICTION. SF/F/H. I know a bit about this one because someone in my family has used the site. He seemed to find it useful, although I remember him saying that one person who critiqued his work was stellar and the rest less or little help. You have to critique some work by others in order to become part of the system. www.critters.org

CRITIQUE.ORG WORKSHOPS. FICTION. MANY GENRES. NONFICTION. SCREENPLAYS. This one is a child of CRITTERS but is bigger than its parent--does all fiction genres, as well as nonfiction and screenplays.

LAURA ARGIRI. Reasonable fees for editing and revision work.  If you're interested, I can send you an email address.

CLAIRE YOUMANS. (No doubt she is a very distant relation!) Writer who edits nonfiction, fiction, and translations from Japanese and French. Ask me for contact information.

THE WRITE LIFE INDEX TO FINDING A CRITIQUE PARTNER Includes a lot of possible forums and workshops. http://thewritelife.com/find-a-critique-partner/  I don't know much or anything about most of these, but the site seems a good place to start.

***
POETRY COURSES And since someone also asked me about a poetry course this week, here's a site with links to free poetry courses

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Alas, I must once again remind large numbers of Chinese salesmen and other worldwide peddlers that if they fall into the Gulf of Spam, they will be eaten by roaming Balrogs. The rest of you, lovers of grace, poetry, and horses (nod to Yeats--you do not have to be fond of horses), feel free to leave fascinating missives and curious arguments.