Author Archives: Robert Lee Brewer

About Robert Lee Brewer

Senior Content Editor, Writer's Digest Community.

Seguidilla: Poetic Form

I’m a big fan of French forms, but there’s something special about the Spanish forms I find from time to time. That includes this week’s form: seguidilla. Seguidilla Poems Seguidilla is one of those poetic forms that started off as a song before eventually settling on an established poetic form. Specifically, seguidilla began as...

John Sibley Williams: Poet Interview

Please join me in welcoming John Sibley Williams to the Poetic Asides blog! John Sibley Williams is the editor of two Northwest poetry anthologies and the author of nine collections, including Disinheritance and Controlled Hallucinations. A seven-time Pushcart nominee, John is the winner of numerous awards, including the Philip Booth Award, American Literary Review...

National Endowment for the Arts: Poetry Spotlight

We’ve been looking at physical locations recently for the poetry spotlight, including Berl’s Brooklyn Poetry Shop and the Hugo House. But this week, let’s spotlight an organization: the National Endowment for the Arts. As always, I appreciate the poetry spotlight ideas people send my way. Keep them coming at robert.brewer@fwmedia.com with the subject line:...

Wednesday Poetry Prompts: 384

For today’s prompt, write a nope poem. A nope poem, I suppose, could be about saying no to a certain situation, person, or thing. Like saying nope to live concerts, people who like debating everything, or mushrooms. Or if you say nope to that premise, fine. Write your nope poem in the way you...

Rondine: Poetic Form

As regular readers of this blog can attest, I love me some French forms. And this week’s poetic form is a French form: the rondine. Rondine Poems If the term “rondine” sounds familiar, almost like rondeau, that’s because it’s very similar to the rondeau. In fact, I’m thinking of calling it the little rondeau,...

Berl’s Brooklyn Poetry Shop: Poetry Spotlight

After taking a look at the Hugo House last week, let’s get back to the East Coast. Specifically, let’s examine Berl’s Brooklyn Poetry Shop. By the way, I appreciate the poetry spotlight ideas people have sent my way. Keep them coming at robert.brewer@fwmedia.com with the subject line: Poetry Spotlight Idea. ***** Order the New...

Wednesday Poetry Prompts: 383

For today’s prompt, write an “it can’t be” poem. That is, a poem about something that just can’t be true. For some, this might mean a heart-broken love poem at the end of a relationship. For others, it might be dealing with a death. Still, it could be as trivial as a sports team...

Remembering Poet Thomas Lux

Poet Thomas Lux passed away this weekend on Sunday. Here’s a short tribute from the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. As you may know, Lux volunteered as a former guest judge for the April PAD Challenge, and he was interviewed for this blog (read it here). He was a force within Atlanta poetry and throughout the country,...

Contrapuntal Poem: Poetic Form

Let’s look at our first poetic form of February: the contrapuntal poem. Contrapuntal Poems I’ve had difficulty in hunting down who originated contrapuntal poems, but it does appear to be influenced by the music world. Contrapuntal music is composed of multiple melodies that are relatively independent that are sounded together. In the poetic world,...

Hugo House: Poetry Spotlight

So far, my spotlights have focused on spots east of the Mississippi, but there’s plenty of poetry to be found on the west coast. This week, let’s travel to Seattle to examine the Hugo House. By the way, I appreciate the poetry spotlight ideas people have sent my way. Keep them coming at robert.brewer@fwmedia.com...

Wednesday Poetry Prompts: 382

For today’s prompt, write a refresh poem. Perhaps, the poem is about refreshing your thirst, refreshing your home decor, or refreshing your browser. Perhaps, the poem is about the need to refresh your lifestyle changes–or even the afterglow of being refreshed by a walk in nature or time with family and friends. ***** Re-create...

Tips From Poet’s Market

As most of you already know, I’m the editor of Poet’s Market in addition to all the other hats I wear around here. It’s a hat I wear proudly, and I’m always trying to figure out ways to improve the annual book. That said, the greatest contributions come from other folks, including the hundreds...

WD Poetic Form Challenge: Clogyrnach

As of today, there’s still time to submit an entry for the diminishing verse challenge, but the window’s closing tomorrow night. So it’s time to get another challenge started up; this time for the clogyrnach. Find the rules for writing clogyrnachs here. This Welsh form is fun to say, sure, but it’s also fun...

AWP Conference: Poetry Spotlight

Last week, we examined the Poetry Foundation in Chicago. This week, let’s head to Washington, DC, to discuss the AWP Conference. By the way, I appreciate the poetry spotlight ideas people have sent my way. Keep them coming at robert.brewer@fwmedia.com with the subject line: Poetry Spotlight Idea. ***** Order the New Poet’s Market! The...

Wednesday Poetry Prompts: 381

There are few certainties in life, but one thing’s been continuously happening for years and years: a poetry prompt on Poetic Asides on Wednesdays. So let’s dive in to this week’s poetry prompt! For today’s prompt, take the phrase “Let’s (blank),” replace the blank with a word or phrase, make the new phrase the...

Donald Illich: Poet Interview

I’m happy to introduce our first poet interview of 2017: Donald Illich! Donald Illich’s work has appeared in literary journals such as Iowa Review, LIT, Nimrod, Passages North, Rattle, and Sixth Finch.  He has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize and received a scholarship from the Nebraska Summer Writers Conference. Washington Writers Publishing House...

Hir a Thoddaid: Poetic Form

Last week, we looked at ottava rima. This week, let’s tackle hir a thoddaid. Hir a Thoddaid Poems Some of you may have already guessed, but the hir a thoddaid is a Welsh form. They’ve got the coolest names, right? And this form is like other Welsh forms in regards to a slight variation...

Poetry Foundation: Poetry Spotlight

Last week, we took a look at the Paul Laurence Dunbar House in Dayton, Ohio. This week, let’s travel to Chicago to examine the Poetry Foundation. By the way, I appreciate the poetry spotlight ideas people have sent my way. Keep them coming at robert.brewer@fwmedia.com with the subject line: Poetry Spotlight Idea. ***** Order...

Wednesday Poetry Prompts: 380

For today’s prompt, write a nothing better poem. Now, there are at least a couple ways to take this, but probably more. First, the poem could be about a moment that’s so amazing that nothing could ever be better–kind of like a high moment poem. But taking the same prompt, someone could spin it...

Collecting Poems into a Book: 5 Poets Share Their Method

I’ve been enjoying going through previous poet interviews to see how poets have shared common experiences–often in unique ways. So here’s one more directed around the concept of collecting poems into a book. ***** Order the New Poet’s Market! The 2017 Poet’s Market, edited by Robert Lee Brewer, includes hundreds of poetry markets, including...

Ottava Rima: Poetic Form

For the first poetic form of 2017, let’s take a look at ottava rima. Ottava Rima Poems With an Italian origin, the earliest known ottava rima were written by Giovanni Boccaccio. In English, Lord Byron used the form to write Don Juan. More contemporary English poets to use the form include William Butler Yeats...

Paul Laurence Dunbar House: Poetry Spotlight

For this week’s poetry spotlight, I’m going to focus close to home–or at least, close to where I grew up and will always call home. Since I grew up in and around Dayton, Ohio, let’s take a look at the Paul Laurence Dunbar House. By the way, I appreciate the poetry spotlight ideas people...

Wednesday Poetry Prompts: 379

For today’s prompt, write a dream poem. So many things happen in our dreams–or, at least, my dreams. Of course, if you don’t have dreams, then write a poem about a dream job, dream relationship, dream vacation, or some other dream situation. ***** Re-create Your Poetry! Revision doesn’t have to be a chore–something that...

Why Do Authors Cross Out Name When Signing Book?

When I attended my first book signing (for the Market Book series), a fellow editor advised me to cross out my name when signing copies. It’s a practice I’ve kept up since, and I’ve seen other authors do it as well, but I still wonder, “Why do authors cross out name when signing book?”...