Classy Talk with Deborah Woodard | Spring 2014

Posted Wed, 4/16/2014 - 1:29pm by  |  Category:

deborah-woodardWhat is the title of your class?
Writing Alongside Emily Dickinson

People should take this class if…
they want to generate new work and read a great poet who specialized in “superb surprise.”  Bonus: participants acquire a special flower alter ego and a master to go with it.  FYI, Dickinson’s alter ego was named Daisy.

Can your students connect with you on social media? If so, how?
Look for me on Facebook.

Are any of your works online and available to the public?
I have an iBook called The Book of Riddles.  It’s free, though I can’t read it myself as I don’t have an iPad.  Alternately, check out my website at for some sample poems.

What’s your teaching philosophy?
I’ve taught hundreds of students at Hugo House and everyone has talent; it just needs to be given a chance to flourish. I try to surprise, even startle, with my writing prompts, and the results are amazing.

If you could have any famous actor read one of your pieces to you, who would it be and why?
Benedict Cumberbatch, as he will be playing Hamlet on the stage in London in 2015, and I have written several Hamlet poems.

What are you currently working on?
A crazy collection of prose poems that deals with everything from the Danish royal family to the demise of the passenger pigeon to my mother’s work as a labor organizer.

What’s your favorite “rule” of writing to break in your own writing?
Writing in your own voice: my latest book is called Borrowed Tales and features voices on loan.

What are you reading now? If you could pair it with a beverage (alcoholic or otherwise), what would you choose?
The Rain of the Future by a Mexican poet, Valerie Mejer. Give me some Jameson on the rocks to go with that, as it packs a punch.