Writing Process

What is your writing process? How do you get from point A to point B to clicking the Publish button on the blog?

Here’s the process that helped me get back into writing poetry more consistently:

Week One: Write a poem every day. It doesn’t matter whether it is thirty lines or three. I just write and see what appears on the paper. No revisions. Once I finish, I don’t look at it again until the following week.

Week Two: Revisit each poem from Week One. I find that looking at a poem with fresh eyes helps me spot a line that I don’t like or find a better way to say what I was thinking. In a sense, I lovingly shred each poem to pieces through revision and rewording. Sometimes it hurts, but it helps me create a better image in a poem.

I continue this process for several weeks, and then look back at what I think is “finished” and revise again if necessary.

How about you?


I wrote this poem over 20 years ago in a creative writing class, one of the best class experiences of my life. There were four of us in the room: the professor (William Virgil Davis) and three students. Each week we would discuss our poems for three hours, ripping the work apart line by line, making sure our words said what we meant for them to say. It was as brutal as it was wonderful, and I wish that type of experience for any writer/poet visiting this page.


The ancient skiff glides
through thick fog
upon a waveless sea.

The mariner draws
full nets of fish;
throws them all back.

He guides the boat
away from shore,
afraid of finding land.