Scott Wiggerman Returns to the Summer Writing Retreat

“Scott was incredible. He really knows how to teach.”

~ 2013 Summer Writing Retreat Attendee on Scott Wiggerman’s Class

For registration information through the Writers’ League of Texas »

Get ready to exercise! Poet and editor Scott Wiggerman returns for his seventh time to the Summer Writing Retreat in Alpine to lead participants in a week of generative writing. In 2011, Wiggerman, through Dos Gatos Press, published Wingbeats: Exercises & Practice in Poetry, which has continued to be on Amazon’s list of top poetry writing books. This year the sequel, Wingbeats II, comes out with another impressive set of exercises from poets around the country—and this is your opportunity to experience an entire week of them.

“Imagination,” wrote W. Somerset Maugham, “grows by exercise.” These exercises will surely expand your imagination and your notions of what constitutes a poem, where a poem comes from, and how it develops. Letter poems, repurposed poems, Wikipedia poems? Yes, yes, yes! Ever try your hand at a landay, a haikoum, a braided narrative? You will. Both fun and challenging, this workshop will provide dozens of both orthodox and unorthodox exercises from prominent contemporary poets like Jill Essbaum, Kevin Prufer, Dean Rader, Carmen Jiménez Smith, Tim Siebles, and Cole Swensen to enliven your writing and expand your perspectives.

In addition, expect practice and discussion of techniques involving diction, voice, persona, imagery, metaphor, structure, cadence, repetition, and revision as Wiggerman leads the way through Wingbeats II with his own personal approach to the book’s exercises, including a class favorite, his own hilarious “Writing the Bad Sonnet,” because everyone can write a bad sonnet.

Wiggerman’s classes are known for their quick pace and their “out of your comfort zone” methodology. You will write in ways you never thought possible, never even imagined, and you will leave Alpine with dozens of ideas and drafts. Each year, in addition to the daily classroom activities, the class generally makes one or two outings to nearby West Texas locales for additional writing inspiration. A lunch with a certain Texas Poet Laureate who lives in Alpine is often on the agenda, as is an evening workshopping session (optional, but worth it!). Expect to work—and play—hard all week.

Requirements: Instructions will be sent to class participants in advance of the retreat detailing any materials students will be expected to bring with them.

About the Instructor: Scott Wiggerman is the author of Presence (Pecan Grove Press) and Vegetables and Other Relationships (Plain View Press), and the editor of not only Wingbeats but also the annual Texas Poetry Calendar and Lifting the Sky: Southwestern Haiku & Haiga. His hundreds of poems in print include those in the recent anthologies Forgetting Home: Poems about Alzheimer’s, The Crafty Poet, and This Assignment Is So Gay: LGBTIQ Poets on the Art of Teaching, just nominated for a Lambda Literary Award.

Wingbeats II at the Feminist Poetry Festival

Saturday, Septmber 14, 2 p.m.

Scott Wiggerman and David Meischen will present exercises from Wingbeats II: Exercises and Practice in Poetry.

See the full schedule here >>

Dos Gatos Press at the Georgetown Poetry Festival

Friday, October 3

5:30–9 p.m.  Enigmatist Reading and open mike

Saturday, October 4

9–10 a.m.  Workshop: Slinkies, Lies, and Words at Work & Play: Three Quick Exercises from Wingbeats II

Scott Wiggerman, Presenter

10:15–11:30 a.m.. Workshop: Memory, Periphery, and Then Some: An Exercise from Wingbeats II

David Meischen, Presenter

11:30 a.m.–1 p.m. Lunch
1–2:30 p.m. Workshop: Contradictions

Sarah Webb, Presenter

2:45–4:45 p.m. Reading: Texas Poetry Calendar
5–6:30 p.m. Supper
6:30–8 p.m. Featured Readings
8–9 p.m. Open Mike

Sunday, October 5

8 a.m. Haiku Hike at Blue Hole

Texas Poetry Calendar Readings

Join us as we celebrate the poets and poetry of the 2015 Texas Poetry Calendar. We are planning readings for Austin, Houston, San Antonio, and the Dallas–Fort Worth Area.

Blue Willow Book Shop, Houston — September 20, 2014, 4 p.m.

14532 Memorial Dr.
Houston, TX 77079

Valerie Koehler and the Blue Willow Book Shop have been hosting Texas Poetry Calendar readings for more than a dozen years. You won’t want to miss this reading!

Find out more about Blue Willow Bookshop »

See a map for Blue Willow Book Shop »

Georgetown Poetry Festival, Georgetown — October 4, 2014, 2:45 p.m.

Join us as we participate in the fifth annual Georgetown Poetry Festival!

The Twig Book Shop, San Antonio — October 11, 2014, 3 p.m.

306 Pearl Parkway, Suite 106
San Antonio, TX 78215

Don’t miss it! The Twig is one of San Antonio’s jewels. It’s at the old Pearl Brewery site, along the recent extension of the River Walk. You’ll hear great poetry, and afterward, there’s wonderful food nearby.

Find out more about The Twig Book Shop »

See a map for The Twig Book Shop »

BookPeople, Austin — TENTATIVE— December 6, 2014, 4 p.m.

603 N. Lamar
Austin, TX 78703

BookPeople is a great supporter of poets and poetry and Dos Gatos Press. Join us for one of our best-attended yearly readings.

Find out more about BookPeople »

See a map for BookPeople »

Dos Gatos Press at the South Central MLA Conference

Dos Gatos Press will have a table at the conference!

We will showcase Wingbeats: Exercises and Practice in Poetry AND Wingbeats II.

Radisson Hotel and Suites-Downtown Austin
October 18-22, 2014