Author Archives: Robert Lee Brewer

About Robert Lee Brewer

Senior Content Editor, Writer's Digest Community.

Poets Helping Poets: Self-publishing and poetry?

Recently, I asked members of my Poetic Asides group on Facebook to give me their take on the relationship of self-publishing and poetry. The response was so overwhelming that I couldn’t include everything (and I apologize if your take was not included–or had to be edited), but I did get a lot. If you...

Wednesday Poetry Prompts: 024

Recently, I’ve been receiving an excessive amount of spam in my e-mail inbox. It’s a problem I’ve had to confront, and I admit it’s a problem that’s been driving me a bit batty. But this daily confrontation (me vs. my excessive spam) is a minor example of conflicts that go on every day in...

Want to workshop some poems?

Just realized that poets can sign up for my upcoming Advanced Poetry course at WritersOnlineWorkshops.com. There are no required texts, but there will be workshopping, communicating and new poems. If you’re interested, you can learn more at http://www.writersonlineworkshops.com/retail/courses.aspx?r=advanced-poetry-Writing-workshop. The course begins on November 6th and lasts 6 weeks. Hope to see you there.

Where is poetry happening? Part II

On September 22, I posted about a few sites that have poetry calendars in some prominent areas–mainly as a result of looking for events in my new home of Atlanta, Georgia. And many poets chimed in with other sites, in addition to my very, very short list. Collected together, here are those for the...

Wednesday Poetry Prompts: 023

Oddly enough, it’s raining outside. While that would be completely normal in my home state of Ohio, rain doesn’t happen very often in Atlanta. With the wind blowing leaves off trees, clouds covering the sun, and rain covering everything else, it almost feels like October in the Buckeye State. So for today’s prompt, I’m...

Exclusive Interview With Poet Diane Lockward

Recently, it seemed as if a lot of the poetry I was reading had something to do with food, and today’s interview subject played a significant role in me feeling that way. After all, Diane Lockward’s most recent collection from Wind Publications is titled What Feeds Us (winner of the 2006 Quentin R. Howard...

ForGodot.com ruffles poetic feathers

Wow! This is a busy day for the blog. How many posts am I going to make today anyway? This post was inspired by a developing story brought to me by my wife Tammy. First, she found this post on Atlanta poet Collin Kelley’s Modern Confessional blog: http://collinkelley.blogspot.com/2008/10/my-poem-at-forgodotcom.html. It talks about an online “anthology”...

Get 25% off books for answering some questions

As you probably know, Poetic Asides is just one piece of the entire Writer’s Digest family of products and services, including Writer’s Digest magazine, Writer’s Digest books, WritersOnlineWorkshops.com, and our Writer’s Digest competitions and events.   To help us know how best to serve writers, we like to regularly solicit feedback. So as part...

Poems in others' words

Lately, there have been a lot of pieces on putting together poetry from other people’s words (or imagining what others would say). Here are some I’ve noticed: * There Once Was a Soccer Mom From Alaska… (Actually Alice Pope led me to this one. Thanks, Alice!) * The Poetry of Sarah Palin * We...

Exclusive Interview With Poet Sheema Kalbasi!

Recently, I had the good opportunity to interview Iranian born poet Sheema Kalbasi who is also a human rights activist and translator. She’s also the director of Dialogue of Nations through Poetry, director of the Iranian Women Poetry Project, and co-director of the Other Voices International Project. Her collection Echoes in Exile (PRA Publications)...

Wednesday Poetry Prompts: 022

Today is the first day of October. We’re also more than a week into my favorite season of the year–Autumn! For today’s prompt, I’d like you to try writing an Autumn Poem. That is, write a poem that evokes autumn for you. For different poets, this will mean different things. Here’s what it means...

Exclusive Interview With Poet Aimee Nezhukumatathil

One of the cool things about this blog is that very talented poets actually contact me about their poetry–either because they read the blog or are referred by their very talented poet friends. One such talented poet is Aimee Nezhukumatathil, who’s the author of At the Drive-In Volcano (2007), winner of the Balcones Prize, and...

Poetry FAQs: When is something considered published?

Okay, this question has been coming up a lot recently in the comments section of this blog: What counts as previously published? And, in relation to this blog, does posting a poem in the comments of this blog mean it’s “published”? Before I begin, I think it would be beneficial for you to read...

Wednesday Poetry Prompts: 021

On Monday, I’m going to be making the “big move” down to Atlanta to live with my wife and stepson. Luckily, F+W has been really supportive of allowing me to telecommute from my new home office. Still, it is a big move and will create a huge change in my typical routine. For today’s...

Where is poetry happening?

So as part of my upcoming move from Southwest Ohio to Northwest Georgia, I’ve been interested in what the poetry scene is like in the Atlanta area. And lucky for me, there is a website dedicated to poetry events in the area. The site is called Poetry Atlanta, Inc., and it was created by...

Exclusive Interview With Poet and Attorney John M. FitzGerald

This interview came about from an earlier interview with poet and actress Hélène Cardona. Sometime in June, Hélène mentioned that John M. FitzGerald’s most recent collection, Telling Time by the Shadows (Turning Point), was actually a collection of secret love poems written by him to her. “These are the poems John wrote when we...

Wednesday Poetry Prompts: 020

As mentioned in an earlier post, Southwest Ohio was beat up by a wind storm that had hurricane force winds. Earlier in the weekend, I assured my sons that Ohio never experiences hurricanes (we just have twisters to contend with usually), but by Sunday evening daddy was proved wrong (once again). Anyway, for this...

First Ever Fake Bio Contest Winner and Other Finalists

Okay, I’ve been in hiding recently because so many poets have been hounding me over who is the winner of the first ever fake bio contest on Poetic Asides. The great thing about this contest is that writers didn’t need to have any “real” credits to enter–just a great imagination of what they’d like to...

Interview, no power, and other fun updates!

Belinda Subraman recently interviewed me on her blog. She has quite a few interviews listed on her blog with various poetry-related people and others. The cool thing about this interview is that it’s in audio. Check it out at http://belinda_subraman.podomatic.com/entry/eg/2008-09-13T08_02_04-07_00. In the interview, I mention S.A. Griffin, Amanda Oaks, James Tate, my wife, an...

Having Fun With Bad Poetry

Brian Klems (of Writer’s Digest fame) brought the following thread to my attention from the WD.com forums: http://forum.writersdigest.com/forums/thread-view.asp?tid=19564&start=1 First post:“I have this gift you seeto write very bad poetryTry as I mightIt’s something I just can’t fightSo I write stuff you wouldn’t read to a tree” -wondo Starting up in July, this thread is...

Wednesday Poetry Prompts: 019

One of my favorite prompts way back in April during the PAD Challenge was when I asked people to write a poem where they slip into the skin of someone or something else. With that prompt in mind, I think I’ve come up with another fun one that is somewhat similar. For this week’s...

Fundamentals of Poetry Writing

Just want to remind people they can sign up for my Fundamentals of Poetry Writing course offered on WritersOnlineWorkshops.com by going to: http://www.writersonlineworkshops.com/retail/courses.aspx?r=fundamentals-of-poetry-writing. It should be a fun and informative course that gives poets a chance to write some new poems and receive feedback from peers and myself. The online course runs from September...

Wednesday Poetry Prompts: 018

I don’t know. Maybe it’s the diet I’ve recently put myself on. Maybe it’s the approach of autumn festivals and the thought of funnel cakes and soft pretzels. Or maybe it’s just the poets I’ve been reading. Regardless, it feels as if I’ve been reading a lot of poems recently dealing with food-food-food (yummy,...

Exclusive Interview With Poet Sandra Beasley

This interview has been a work-in-progress since May of this year, even if Sandra Beasley wasn’t in the loop on it. When I was in Los Angeles earlier this year for BookExpo America, I brought along a copy of Hotel Amerika for reading purposes and was floored by a poem about a translator by...

Everyone have a great weekend!

It’s Labor Day weekend here in the States, so I get a 3-day weekend with my sons and family reunions on both Sunday (in Northwest Indiana) and Monday (in Southwest Ohio). Woo-hoo! Also, I want to remind y’all that the deadline for the Fake Bio Note contest is drawing near. So before you get...