Award-winning poet Anthony Vahni Ezikiel Capildeo will be your guide through this next-level course, designed for poets keen to push themselves further. Through experimentation, challenge and feedback, you will produce new work and have a better sense of how to assess your poetry objectively. Over 18 weeks, you will be guided through the landscape of contemporary poetry.
Classes are capped at 15 places to ensure a high-quality experience. Book quickly to secure your place.
What the course covers
Making Strange – how to look at the world afresh and make the familiar strange again in your poetry
Narrative – we examine development and movement in short free verse; how can structure keep the reader engaged?
First Person, Third Person – we look at the power of different forms of narrator and the impact on the reader
Autobiography, Facts and Metaphorical Truth – writing about your own life can be very difficult; here we explore how metaphorical truth can help with writing personal material
Finding Your Voice – exploring the notions of voice and how everything you’ve ever read, seen, heard or experienced contributes to your work
The Sonnet – we look at the Shakespearian sonnet and how it has developed over time
Using Fairytale and Myth – archetypal stories provide inspiration for poets and help us to understand life and death; borrowing from existing stories can help us to write our own
The Prose Poem – there are many definitions of the prose poem, and we’ll read examples and create our own
Experimental Poetry – it’s time to press at the boundaries of what a poem is: found poems, visual poems, collage poems
Ekphrasis – in this module we look to visual arts for inspiration, investigating how one medium can talk to another
Sequences – sometimes a single poem is not enough; here we look at how sequences can be deployed to further develop ideas
Editing – feedback from other writers is very useful but being able to self-edit is a key skill.
By the end of the course you will have:
Developed your poetic voice
Challenged yourself to write your best work yet through experimentation and feedback
Understood the editing process and learned how to objectively judge your own work
Thought about the reader and how to help them engage with your poetry
Received constructive and supportive feedback on a minimum of 12 poems
Developed an understanding of the scope of contemporary poetry
Explored avenues for where next to take your poetry
Engaged with a group of fellow poets keen to take their work to the next level.
What can you expect from the course?
Former student Jim McElroy reflects on his Poetry Writing: Next Steps course.
Writing Poetry: Next Steps course = £945
Applying to the course
This is an intermediate-level course. To apply, we ask that you submit:
A 500-word sample of your work
A one-paragraph introduction to yourself.
Email firstname.lastname@example.org to apply.
Please format your email’s subject line: ‘[your name] application for Poetry’.
Applications are assessed and places are allocated on a first-come-first-served basis.
Committing to an 18-week course is a big decision for any writer. If you have any questions at all please do get in touch at email@example.com.
Designed in partnership with the School of Literature, Drama and Creative Writing at UEA
Format: How the course works
Our Creative Writing Online courses take place entirely over the internet. All you need is a computer and an internet connection.
The majority of the course is delivered in text form, making it easy to progress through the course chapter-by-chapter.
Your knowledge will be developed through writing exercises and the analysis of samples of writing.
The course is divided into fortnightly modules, each of which introduces an aspect of the craft of writing.
Every two weeks you will submit an assignment to your tutor, who will then respond with constructive feedback and advice. Outside of those assignment deadlines you can progress through the lessons and exercises at your own pace.
You will have 1-2-1 feedback from your tutor and fellow students.
Forum-based student discussions are included throughout the course, providing an opportunity for students to interact with each other and the course tutor. To get the most out of the course, we recommend taking part in as many discussions as possible.
If you have any questions, you can get in touch by emailing Vicki at firstname.lastname@example.org.
This course runs for 18 weeks and is split into several modules, which each last two weeks. Modules consist of multiple chapters and your progress is tracked throughout, making it easy to pick up where you left off.
Although a module is open for two weeks, you are not expected to dedicate that entire time to the course! Our online courses are designed to fit around a busy lifestyle and each chapter is conveniently bite-sized so that you can always be making progress. On average we expect most students to spend between 3-5 hours per week on a course (this time will be a mixture of reading, community discussions, exercises and assignments). This will vary from student to student and some modules may be more intensive than others.
Each module includes smaller exercises and a main assignment. How much time you spend on these is flexible and will depend on your own writing style and process.
September 2022 term schedule
Module 1: Monday 19th September – Sunday 9th October
Module 2: Monday 10th October – Sunday 30th October
Module 3: Monday 31st October – Sunday 20th November
Module 4: Monday 21st November – Sunday 11th December
Module 5: Monday 12th December – Sunday 15th January (includes 2-week break over Christmas)
Module 6: Monday 16th January – Sunday 5th February
Zoom sessions TBC.
Equipment and software: What you need
You will need access to a computer and you will need access to the internet.
You can view the study materials on a mobile device but we recommend using a desktop or laptop computer for working on assignments and taking part in community discussions.
Important: Your web browser must be up-to-date to access the courses. We recommend using Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox.
We use two platforms to deliver our tutored online courses:
This online course platform hosts our study materials and community interactions. You will be provided with a login for a Teachable account at the beginning of your course.
We use zoom to host any live tutored elements of the course. Please see the course-specific pages for full details
What people think of the course
“I’ve taken away a much greater confidence in my creative work, an ability to be much more flexible but also decisive with my writing ideas and have learned many new writing techniques and ways of working.”
“I have learned a huge amount on this course. I feel I have leaped ahead in my knowledge of writing and what I am capable of writing at the moment.”
“My output has improved a thousand-fold in both content and quality.”
“The course had a therapeutic effect. I gained a sense of freedom from getting lost in the characterisations and dramas of my stories.”
“The course exceeded my expectations in every aspect with how well-structured it was, the exercises and the feedback. I couldn’t have asked for anything more.”
Motivation and focus
Motivation and focus
“Having someone read and feedback on my writing gave me focus and motivation.”
Who is this course for?
This course is ideal for people who have done some training or beginners courses who want to:
Vahni Anthony Ezekiel Capildeo FRSL is a Trinidadian Scottish writer of poetry and non-fiction. Capildeo’s eight books and eight pamphlets include Like a Tree, Walking (Carcanet, November 2021) and The Dusty Angel (Oystercatcher, 2021). Their interests include plurilingualism, traditional masquerade, and multidisciplinary collaboration. In 2014 Capildeo served as a judge for the Forward Prize and won the Forward Prize for Poetry for Best Collection in 2016. They are Writer in Residence and Professor at the University of York, a Visiting Scholar at Pembroke College, Cambridge, and an Honorary Student of Christ Church, Oxford.
“There is a sharpness to the observations and a bold specificity to their articulation, often presented with an eye for humour. Capildeo’s delight in this experiment is evident” – Chrissy Williams, Poetry London
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