The Crafty Poet (review)

09 Dec

The Crafty Poet: A Portable WorkshopThe Crafty Poet: A Portable Workshop by Diane Lockward

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Not all poetry prompts are created equal. Diane Lockward’s are some of my favorites. I love the way she observes the poems from which she gets her inspiration (often with a dash of her sly humor), and how she leaves no stone unturned in delivering to us a range of places to look (within and around us) for something to write about.

But The Crafty Poet: A Portable Workshop is much more than just prompts. It contains craft tips from established poets as well as explanations of how specific poems came to be written—the wisdom of fifty-six contemporary poets in all! On top of that, it has sample poems written for all but the bonus prompts, to give us an idea of how others tackled these prompts.

The craft tips, poem explanations, and prompts are organized in ten categories that include Generating Material, Diction, Sound, Voice, Revision, and Writer’s Block. Each piece is concise and to-the-point, reflecting its origin as part of Lockward’s  free monthly newsletter (Interested in subscribing? You can do that from Lockward’s blog, Blogalicious.)

This is a book for both new and experienced poets. It’s poetry how-to plus the wisdom of one’s clan (poetry clan) all in a tidy 280-page volume.

View all my reviews


Posted by on December 9, 2013 in Book Reviews


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4 responses to “The Crafty Poet (review)

  1. Linda Baie

    December 9, 2013 at 9:10 pm

    Thank you Violet-this sounds terrific, like something that would be very helpful!


    • Violet Nesdoly

      December 10, 2013 at 7:38 am

      Linda, get it as a Christmas gift to yourself. It’s one of those gifts that keep on giving.


  2. jama

    December 10, 2013 at 3:20 am

    So glad you featured Diane’s new book. It should be on every poet’s bookshelf.


    • Violet Nesdoly

      December 10, 2013 at 7:37 am

      I so agree, Jama! It’s fun, interesting, with so much good information … just like her newsletter.



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