Our Next Meeting

Thursday 8 November 2018


                 Excavating the past for poetry - with Zoe Mitchell


Zoe MitchellIn this talk and workshop session, poet Zoe Mitchell will discuss the value of using history and mythology as a means of expressing modern concerns through poetry. Her talk will include a discussion of various research techniques used to generate inspiration, how to shape a poem and a number of workshop exercises. Zoe will be sharing examples from leading poets and her own work. As a prolific writer, Zoe will also share her techniques for maintaining motivation and generating the creative spark which supports her writing She will offer thoughts on the importance of taking work public and her personal process for managing submissions to magazines.

Zoe Mitchell is a poet and a PhD student at the University of Chichester. She previously studied for an MA in Creative Writing at the University of Chichester, where she graduated with distinction and received the Kate Betts Memorial Prize. Zoe has a passion for history and a fascination with the beliefs and stories of the past. Her MA thesis focused on the clash of people and cultures during the Roman invasion and the impact on Celts and Ancient Britons. Her Creative Writing PhD is focused on witches and their presentation by female poets. Zoe is a widely published poet whose work has appeared in a number of prestigious magazines including The Rialto, The Moth and The London Magazine. She was commissioned to write poems for the Chalk Poets Anthology which she performed at the Winchester Poetry Festival in 2016.

Zoe has recently been announced as the joint winner of the Indigo Dreams First Collection Competition.  Read more about Zoe here.


Review of the meeting

Richard Buxton introduced Zoe Mitchell, who talked about ‘Excavating the past for poetry.’ There is an account of what she said in the members’ section. She interrupted her presentation three times with five minute writing challenges. The large number of audience members who read out their attempts at the end of her talk proved these challenges had been very stimulating.

Zoe gained a distinction, and won the Kate Betts memorial prize for her MA in Creative Writing from the University of Chichester. She has had 40 poems published in magazines since 2015, and is now researching for her PhD. Her website is www.writingbyzoe.com .

Zoe spoke about the following topics, and gave examples of different poets’ work to illustrate her points.

Research and Inspiration, Poetic Responses, Mythology, Transforming a Local Legend, Personal Histories, Editing a poem, Submission.

A full account of the talk and resources can be found in the members’ section.

13 December Meeting in the downstairs room of the Charles Dickens pub, Heene Road. Gerry Thompson will be speaking.