Next Word, Better Word: The Craft of Writing Poetry

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St. Martin's Press, Apr 26, 2011 - Language Arts & Disciplines - 288 pages
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This accessible writer's guide provides a helpful framework for creating poetry and navigates contemporary concerns and practices. Stephen Dobyns, author of the classic book on the beauty of poetry, Best Words, Best Order, moves into new terrain in this remarkable book. Bringing years of experience to bear on issues such as subject matter, the mechanics of poetry, and the revision process, Dobyns explores the complex relationship between writers and their work. From Philip Larkin to Pablo Neruda to William Butler Yeats, every chapter reveals useful lessons in these renowned poets' work. Both enlightening and encouraging, Next Word, Better Word demystifies a subtle art form and shows writers how to overcome obstacles in the creative process.
 

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Contents

introduction
1
one approaching subject matter
9
two joining form and content
25
three reconciling paradox
47
four aspects of the syllable
69
five line breaks
89
six context and causality
111
seven a sense of space
127
ten moral inquiry
187
eleven bearing witness
205
twelve counterpoint
219
thirteen the nature of metaphor
235
glossary
263
permissions
265
notes
267
index
275

eight closure
147
nine revision
171

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About the author (2011)

Stephen Dobyns is the author of over 30 novels and poetry collections, including The Church of the Dead Girls, Cold Dog Soup, and Cemetery Nights. Among his many honors and awards are a Melville Cane Award, Pushcart Prizes, National Poetry Series prize, and three National Endowment for the Arts fellowships. His novels have been translated into 20 languages, and his poetry has appeared in the Best American Poems anthology. Dobyns teaches creative writing at Warren Wilson College and has taught at the University of Iowa, Sarah Lawrence College.

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