One of the benefits to writing for an education market is I get to spend a bunch of time researching cool things to teach kids to do. In the process, I routinely run across fun things for writers of all ages. One of my recent discoveries along those lines? Blackout Poetry. I found it when I stumbled upon the companion site for Austin Kleon’s book, Newspaper Blackout. I immediately felt like I had uncovered a society of secret poetry, hidden carefully in plain sight, among everyday words. Blackout Poetry is sinfully simple to explain: take a newspaper article and black out some of the words so that you leave a poem behind. You can see some brilliant examples on the site linked above.
The thing I like best about the method is that it forces you to consider each word, weigh it for it’s worth, and select only the choicest morsels to savor in the finished piece. I find the whole concept fascinating.
This weekend, take the time to experiment with this method of “finding” poetry. Or, if poetry is not your style, use the method to find flash fiction instead.
Take your time and read between the lines. What will you find lurking there?