Against the Grain

Against the Grain

Learn where your resistances are and try working against them. Who knows what will happen?

What sort of writer are you? Do you find yourself making the same sorts of decisions, repeating the same gestures? If you want to break out of your comfort zone – and perhaps explore some of your prejudices along the way – then this course is for you. 

Each week there’ll be a writing challenge to get you moving in new directions. If you’re a poet who prioritises metrical verse and rhyme, then you’ll be asked to try something more disruptive. If you always tend towards lyric, then find a way to position your poem differently. The course will also force you to examine what you dislike in order to look more closely at how your tastes are formed, and how these tastes influence the poems you write. Learn where your resistance is and try working against it. Who knows what will happen? 

Over this course we’ll take slant and challenging approaches to form, ekphrasis, dramatic writing, improvisation, surrealism, and your influences, as a means of opening up new pathways in your writing, equipping you with new skills, and breaking you out of your current mould. 

5 fortnightly sessions over 10 weeks. No live chats. Suitable for UK & International students.  

To apply for a concessionary rate, please send relevant documentation showing your eligibility for one of our concessions to [email protected] Conditions of eligibility are detailed here. If you have any questions or wish to be added to the waiting list of a sold-out course, please email [email protected]. For more information visit our Online Courses page. 

Image Credit: jukan-tateis

About Kathryn Simmonds View Profile

Kathryn Simmonds has published two collections with Seren, Sunday at the Skin Launderette (2008), and The Visitations (2013). Her third collection, Scenes from Life on Earth is published by Salt (2022). She has been Poet-in-Residence at the Charles Causley Trust in Cornwall, and her poems have appeared in various publications including Poetry, The Guardian, The New Statesman, The Poetry Review and The Irish Times. Her poems and short stories have also been broadcast on BBC radio. She has worked as a poetry tutor for Morley College and Oxford University Continuing Education, and run a number of courses for The Poetry School. She lives in Norwich with her family. 

'The Poetry School is unique in the world in offering a great range of courses, all with highly qualified and experienced tutors who introduce students to aspects of poetry in great depth and mentor them with skill and sensitivity.'

- Spring 2022 survey response

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