Paisley Rekdal on Writing the Wrong Thing
February 20, 2020
Writers, what is your deepest fear about your craft? On February 6, we hosted a reading with Seattle-born poet and current Utah Poet Laureate, Paisley Rekdal. During the Q&A with SAL’s Associate Director, Rebecca Hoogs, Paisley answered questions about her writing process and her new work, Nightingale, but it was this question about fear that followed her home:
“What do you give your students permission to do or try that feels scary or off limits to them?”
Paisley recently re-answered the question in a 10-tweet thread that cites the fear of writing the wrong thing in a culture always poised on the “post” button. “There is an automatic sense of an audience,” Paisley writes, “someone always listening and judging.”
Looking to more than one poet’s cure for writing anxiety? Try this essay on failure by Keetje Kuipers, recommended by Paisley, from Poetry Northwest.