Time: 10:30 - 13:00
This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
Course Code: HW170
Duration: 2 sessions
What is the course about?
Shakespeare and Petrarch may be the names that spring to mind when you hear the word 'sonnet' but modern poets such as Terrance Hayes are pushing the boundaries of this established form further and further. This workshop offers an introduction to the traditional sonnet, and explores ways of manipulating the form in new and subversive ways.
This is a live online course. You will need:
- Internet connection. The classes work best with Chrome.
- A computer with microphone and camera is best (e.g. a PC/laptop/iMac/MacBook), or a tablet/iPad/smart phone/iPhone if you don't have a computer.
We will contact you with joining instructions before your course starts.
What will we cover?
- What are the traditional forms of the sonnet?
- Which language and structural techniques are established in this form?
- How can we push the rules of the form in unexpected ways?
What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...
- Understand traditional approaches to writing sonnets.
- Understand ways in which the genre could be subverted.
- Write your own sonnets.
What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?
This course is most suitable for students who have taken one of our 'Ways into poetry' courses or students who have previous experience of writing poetry.
How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?
You will be taught through a mix of individual, pair and group work, tutor instruction, text analysis and in-class writing activities.
All writing courses at City Lit will involve an element of workshop. This means that students will produce work which will be discussed in an open and constructive environment with the tutor and other students. The college operates a policy of constructive criticism, and all feedback on another student’s work by the tutor and other students should be delivered in that spirit.
For classes longer than one day regular reading and writing exercises will be set for completion at home to set deadlines.
City Lit Writing endeavours to create a safe and welcoming space for all and we strongly support the use of content notes in our classes. This means that learners are encouraged to make their tutor and classmates aware in advance if any writing they wish to share contains material that may be deemed sensitive. If you are unsure about what might constitute sensitive content, please ask your tutor for further clarification and read our expectations for participating in writing courses at City Lit.
Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?
Please bring a pen and paper.
When I've finished, what course can I do next?
City Lit offers a range of poetry day workshops including 'Performance poetry' and 'Writing black out poetry'. For further information, browse the writing section of our website.
Sarah Wardle won Poetry Review’s new poet of the year award in 1999 and her first collection, Fields Away (Bloodaxe Books, 2003), was shortlisted for the Forward best first collection prize. Her second book, SCORE! (Bloodaxe Books, 2005), included some of the poems she broadcast while poet-in-residence for Tottenham Hotspur Football Club. Her most recent Bloodaxe collections are Beyond (2014) and Spiritlands (2019). She has been a Royal Literary Fund Fellow at Royal Holloway, University of London, and works as a creative writing tutor for Morley College, Westminster Kingsway College and the Workers’ Educational Association.
Please note: We reserve the right to change our tutors from those advertised. This happens rarely, but if it does, we are unable to refund fees due to this. Our tutors may have different teaching styles; however we guarantee a consistent quality of teaching in all our courses.