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Meet the Teaching Artist: Mining Our Obsessions Poetry Intensive with Lauren Davis

by Writing Workshops Staff

10 months ago


Meet the Teaching Artist: Mining Our Obsessions Poetry Intensive with Lauren Davis

by Writing Workshops Staff

10 months ago


We are thrilled to introduce you to Lauren Davis, who will be leading a new craft seminar titled Mining Our Obsessions, a 1-Day Intensive Poetry Workshop.

In this one-day intensive, Lauren will delve into the depths of your mental addictions, be it an idea, person, place, or thing. By the end of this immersive seminar, you'll emerge with a captivating collection of first drafts that intimately explore what haunts and fascinates you the most.

Hi, Lauren. Please introduce yourself to our audience.

I'm a poet, short story writer, and editor living on the Olympic Peninsula. I have an MFA from the Bennington Writing Seminars, I've published two poetry books, and my debut fiction collection is forthcoming. I started teaching online during the past couple of years, and I love the opportunity to connect with writers that I would never meet otherwise.

What made you want to teach this specific class? Is it something you are focusing on in your own writing practice? Have you noticed a need to focus on this element of craft? Or is this just your jam and you love it?

I'm an obsessive person, and I've learned that this is an asset in writing. If I can channel it into with my craft, then I can honor whatever subject matter I am working with. I hear students all the time say something along the lines of, "I can't stop writing about _____!" Good! Don't stop. Your obsession is a gift.

Give us a breakdown of how the course is going to go. What can the students expect? What is your favorite part about this class you've dreamed up?

The course will be largely generative, though we will spend a short amount of time reading quotes and poems from other authors. I love teaching this class because participants walk away with a small body of drafts that work together in subject matter.

What was your first literary crush?

I fell in obsession with Anne Sexton in high school. She's a dark, egregious figure, but her poetry introduced me to a new world of possibility.

What are you currently reading?

Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro

How do you choose what you're working on? When do you know it is the next thing you want to write all the way to THE END?

I don't choose what I'm working on. It chooses me. I'll become obsessive about a subject or project, and I won't be able to move on until I put the time in. And then, once I do, I feel a certain amount of peace and release.

Where do you find inspiration?

I find a lot of inspiration in the writing of other authors. There is no greater teacher.

What is the best piece of writing wisdom you've received that you can pass along to our readers? How did it impact your work? Why has this advice stuck with you?

Once you are good at something, do something else. I think about this a lot, and it inspires me to experiment, play, and take risks that otherwise I would ignore.

What is your favorite book to recommend on the craft of writing? Why this book?

Zen in the Art of Writing. This book is written in a way that all writers at all levels can benefit.

Learn more about working with Lauren:

You can learn more about Lauren's upcoming craft seminar Mining Our Obsessions 1-Day Poetry Intensive and sign up now!

Don't miss out on this unique opportunity to join Lauren Davis and unlock the extraordinary power of your writing.

Instructor Lauren Davis is the author of the forthcoming short story collection The Milk of Dead Mothers (YesYes Books) and the poetry collections Home Beneath the Church (Fernwood Press) and When I Drowned (Aldrich Press), and the chapbooks Each Wild Thing’s Consent (Poetry Wolf Press), and The Missing Ones (Winter Texts). She holds an MFA from the Bennington College Writing Seminars. She is a former Editor in Residence at The Puritan’s Town Crier, and she is the winner of the Landing Zone Magazine’s Flash Fiction Contest. Her work has appeared in numerous literary publications and anthologies including Prairie Schooner, Spillway, Poet Lore, Ibbetson Street, Ninth Letter and elsewhere. She reads for the Maine Review. Davis lives with her husband and two black cats on the Olympic Peninsula in a Victorian seaport community.

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