You are here


Live Canon: Online Poetry Courses

Live Canon's online correspondence courses are 6 or 12 weeks in length. Each week participants receive a tutorial via email with written material and links to audio and video recordings. There are various quick tasks within the email and then one main writing task for the week. Work can be sent to Live Canon for detailed written feedback each week. There is also an online discussion group for the course, which you can dip into at any time, and discuss work with other participants and get their feedback. The courses are designed to be as flexible as possible around other life commitments. 


Summer Term 2020 - Now On Sale

Lost Lionesses: Female poets of the 16th and 17th centuries

This new course will explore the work of 12 under-known, under-studied, and in some cases forgotten, female poets from the 16th and 17th centuries. We'll explore one poet each week, with each tutorial including the poet's work, video/audio content, and writing tasks to inspire new you to write new poems. 

Writing Science

This course looks at how poets have engaged with science (and vice versa) throughout two-thousand years of writing. Participants will look at poetry and maths, geology, physics, astrophysics, chemistry, medicine... and science fiction. Each week you'll be prompted to create your own new work.

Political Poetry 

Have things you'd like to say about the world right now? Want to channel that into your writing? This course will look at the many ways poetry can engage with politics including form, protest poetry, discourse, rhetoric and vocabulary, the poet as witness, satire and public poetry. You'll then be inspired to write 12 new poems of your own.

Writing the Classics

Exploring how poets have engaged with the literature and mythology of ancient Greece and Rome. Explore the wide range of poetry in the English language responding to classical literature, and write 12 of your own new poems.

Experimenting with Form

Reasonably confident poet, but want to know more about form and metre? This course will mentor you through exploring, playing and experimenting with form in your work, covering forms including the modern sonnet, tanka and haiku, the ghazal, sestina, villanelle, terza rima, visual and concrete poetry, epistolatory poems, iambic pentameter and rhyme royal.

Writing 'Climate Crisis'

The course will spend 12 weeks exploring poetry, from across the world, which has been written in response to the current global climate emergency. Each week the group will be using aspects of the environmental discourse to inspire new poems.

Gathering and Editing your First Collection

If you have written a substantial body of poems and you are starting to think about gathering them into a first collection, this course aims to support that process. Work through how to select material, give a collection cohesion and a structural arc and how to be ruthless with what you leave out.  Look at the editing of individual poems and the balance of the collection as a whole. It is a 6 week course, hoping to guide you through this often daunting process.

Dates and times
From Wed 29 Apr 2020
£160 for 12 week courses | £120 for 6 week course (half price for students and the unwaged)