Quick Tips for Perfecting Free Verse Poetry – Beginners Welcome!

Poetry takes time and practice. You cannot just suddenly excel at it the first time, so don’t panic if you can’t seem to let it flow! Now, I am no expert, but I would like to share a few tips that have helped me grow and that I still take on board daily.

1. Listen to music.
Listen to music to get yourself in the mood and focus. You can also use lyrics to build a piece of poetry if you’re stuck.

2. Jot down things you hear around you throughout the day.
In everyday conversations, if you hear something poetic, or if something comes to you, write it in your phone’s note app or in a literal notepad you may keep with you.

3. Isolate yourself.
Sit in a quiet room, perhaps even in the dark. The more alone you are, the easier you will think.

4. Use metaphors, personification, etc.
Use language techniques. At first, try to make the metaphors about earthy things or nature since they’re easier — for example, comparing someone’s eyes to the sea or the stars or comparing someone’s soft hands to freshly cut grass.

5. The weirder the better.
Sometimes comparing somebody’s stance to a limp piece of steak works. The stranger things are, the more the reader will feel inside of your poetry and hooked on it.

6. USE DETAIL!
Use detail in every line. The more detail used, the more people can picture the words inside their head and the more the words come to life. For example: “hands so warm they could have emerged from a dryer.” The detail used is the most important factor to perfect poetry.

7. Link lines together.
To move from one line to the next, you need to find similarities between each line, even if they are very far-fetched. That’s the only way to go on without making it too boring or long.

8. Make the ending catchy/clever.
The ending is what people take away from a poem. If the last two lines are extremely beautiful or heartbreaking, then the entire poem will be seen that way. If they are lame or not worth reading, the same goes. Give the reader something to take away or to be amazed at.

9. Think of a title first and go from there.
If you are stuck for ideas, pick a random title or some keywords, and it should start to evolve from there. You need a starting point to write at all.

10. Do not edit while you write. Let it flow.
If you edit as you go, you could lose your train of thought, and then the whole poem is too short or goes nowhere. Forget the spelling mistakes or what could be improved; do it afterwards when everything is out there.

11. Don’t force it, or you’ll hate it.
If you force it, you will hate it. It is okay to get writer’s block. Everyone has it; don’t panic. It will go away, and you’ll be free to write again.

12. Repeat words often.
Repeat words often. Repeat words often. Repeat words often. No, not like that. More like repeating the first word over and over in different sentences to create an effect. For example, saying “because” at the start of each line for four lines. It doesn’t have to be an entire poem, either — just a few to chuck in there, and off you go.

 

Hannah Green
Literature-driven Hannah Green is a sixteen-year-old student in NSW Australia with a passion for writing. This spark grew from before she turned four, and since then she has been reluctant to abandon her ambition. She also works at a bookstore, which is the best retail job she could ask for. Her creative flair yearns for books, photography, and drama. Hannah’s goal in life is to have a book published, no matter how successful, and she is currently working on her very own YA novel. Writing for Germ Magazine is a dream come true for her, as she aspires to follow in Jennifer Niven’s footsteps, slowly making the world a better place -- one carefully crafted sentence at a time. She is a strong believer of the fact that everybody is immensely beautiful and worthy, so if she can convince one person of this through her words, then she has fulfilled her purpose.

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