This retreat was transformative for me. Truly, my question going into the retreat was (and often remains) am I good enough to do this thing? Can I really write a novel in verse?
First, thank you to Keisha for hosting this week's Poetry Friday round-up. I enjoy Keisha's weekly reflections, poems and writing invitations. I highly recommend a visit to her Whisper from the Ridge.
As with so many writers, I learned that my answer is....
The attendees of the retreat were as welcoming and as encouraging as I could have hoped for. Kathy Erskine and Alma Fullerton are exceptionally knowledgeable and skilled teachers. I learned so much!
One thing that I learned is that I have more to discover about story crafting. I want to do this work. Happily, work involves reading lots of novels in verse. Kathy Erskine has a fantastic list of Verse Novel a Day for Poetry Month. It's well worth checking out.
When I looked over her list, I was mentally checking off what novels in verse I had already read and, novels in verse on the shelf at my middle school library where I am a Teacher Librarian. I thought that other verse-writers might be interested to see what's typically on a library shelf nowadays. Perhaps my catalog can enrich your knowledge. The photos below are screen shots from the library catalog at my school.
Please note....not every single title on this list is strictly a verse novel. For example, Engle's Enchanted Air and Woodson's Brown Girl Dreaming are memoirs. Grimes' One Last Word is a collection. However, when I'm talking verse novels with teachers and students I include these because of the element of the story to discover. If anyone is a genre-bender....it's a verse novelist!
I have more to say about Highlights...and my learnings next week when I celebrate a year of writing since attending in May 2016. But, if there are any teachers in the house.....Highlights is offering a $200 discount on a writer's retreat for Teacher Appreciation Week. Woot!
For now, I'm Poetry Friday partying with A Teaching Life. Join us! Thank you, Tara, for hosting.