It’s an age-old question: How does one move from a chapter, a scene, an idea for a character to an entire book? For the poet the query is largely the same. She might have no issues in evoking the emotion necessary for one poem but is unsure how to sustain the structure or intensity for an entire verse novel.
The more I write, the more I firmly believe there is no one way to write a book. I have yet to approach any of my manuscripts the same way. Here, though, are some things I’ve learned from both reading and writing verse novels:
Subject matter must be right for poetry
Some topics lend themselves more easily to poetry than others. Some subjects refuse to be written as prose. Many times an author will use verse to mimic the rhythm of the story. Here are a few books that come to mind:
Sharon Creech’s HEARTBEAT, about a girl who loves to run
Karen Hesse’s OUT OF THE DUST, where the spare language reflects the stark Dust Bowl setting
Lisa Schroeder’s FAR FROM YOU, about a girl who sings and and writes songs~ read more ~