TEACHING

"I have been looking at what its critics would undoubtedly call the workshop poem—what Carolyn Kizer once called "the good gray poem" of the workshops—for twenty years, and I have to say I do not know what it is, unless it is an early draft of a poem by a poet who is still under forty. They have come in all sizes and shapes, struck every known attitude and stance, showed unending ambition and promise, and yes, they have all failed to one degree or another to be the equal of "Sailing to Byzantium." But, then, so did all of W.B.Yeats's work before he was forty fail to be the equal of "Sailing to Byzantium."
            
                —Roger Mitchell,  
                   from "On Being Large and Containing Multitudes"

Before retiring from full time teaching at Indiana University—Bloomington, Roger Mitchell taught both undergraduate and graduate courses in literature and creative writing for the Department of English. He directed the Creative Writing Program and for a time held the Ruth Lilly Chair of Poetry. Since retiring, he has taught as a Visiting Professor at Colorado College in Colorado Springs.

Not all his teaching has been in colleges and universities, however. He has conducted writing workshops in a variety of locations and to all levels of learners, from Poets-in-the-Schools programs in primary and secondary schools to adult workshops at writers' conferences and in prisons. Most recently, he has taught the summer writers' workshop for the Old Forge Library in upstate New York, taught classes in poetry writing for The Ragdale Foundation, The Poetry Center of Chicago, and the Indiana University Writers' conference. He has also conducted one-day workshops for a number of local writers' groups, such as Poetry West in Colorado Springs and The Writers in Oak Park, Illinois.

Roger Mitchell is available for short-term college and university appointments, writing workshops, and writers' conferences.

Fees on request.


"On Being Large and Containing Multitudes": teaching creative writing in a university setting 
An introductory talk given to a poetry workshop   
Writing exercises and their value, with three sample exercises

 

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