Every April, many poets commit to writing 30 poems in 30 days as a special National Poetry Month challenge. Although I love this generative exercise, April has proved to be a tricky month for me due to academic deadlines as a student and educator. A few years ago, some friends and I started doing a summer challenge as a substitute. I love these challenges for the camaraderie they build and the freedom to write crappy poems. It’s impossible not to write crappy poems because any energy you’d like to use towards fine-tuning must instead go towards churning out the next day’s poem.
As a result, I rarely come out of the experience with fully formed work, but I write what would otherwise not exist and quite often create the fertile soil that sprouts new poems in July and onward. In fact, a lot of the poems featured in my past two manuscripts began during one of these 30/30 challenges. We’re gearing up for another one at the start of June. If you’re interested in joining us, you can sign up via this link. I hope everyone’s hanging in there and staying safe. Write on.