These notes were from the summer I spent at Governor’s Honors in 1986. I’ve been looking for a sonnet I wrote that was published in the Camilla Enterprise and haven’t been able to find it, but have found this, maybe it will help. These are from a teacher named Ms. Coleman.
Questions to ask as you begin writing?
- Am I writing down everything? (without stopping to select or worry about little things?)
- What else could be possible? (Or impossible in an impossible world?)
- How is what I’m thinking of like something else (to make comparisons, either metaphors or similes)
- Am I, hopefully, using picture words, like an oak tree, a witch, a frog, not feeling words like faith, despair, love
- Am I remembering that I can show feeling instead of telling it if I create a picture with enough detail or images?
Questions to Ask when rewriting poems:
- Can my verbs or adjectives be made more interesting – closer to what I mean?
- Have I used the clearest words?
- If I have used rhyme, are the words in correct order? Does it sound like I talk?
- Is there too much rhyme, so much that the reader pays more attention to it than to what I’m saying?
- Have I used as many of the senses – sight, smell, sound, taste, touch – as possible? (At least two.)
- Can some words be taken out because they don’t really add to the poem?
- Can any lines be moved?
- Have I looked deeply into the poem into what makes the poem uniquely mine?
- Am I remembering to go back to see if I can add anything to make what I’ve written more interesting?
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