“A community of writers is very important for writers of all types,” Rita says. “My particular community is in Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky.”
She has studied poetry with Pauletta Hansel, the Poet Laureate of Cincinnati, at Wright State teaching and writing workshops, a writing retreat through Thomas More College, summer classes at the University of Iowa and at Antioch Writers’ Workshop at University of Dayton.
“I also read constantly,” Rita says. “There are so many great texts about poetry and writing poetry that it’s hard to choose just a few to recommend.”
“As for poets I admire, if I had to pick one historic poet to hang out with for a day, I’d choose Walt Whitman,” Rita says. “His ‘Leaves of Grass’ opened up poetry form for so many writers and readers. It’s magnificent! For a modern poet to hang out with for a day, I’d choose Mary Oliver.”
As for reading poetry, Rita says, “It’s important to let go of preconceived notions of what poetry is. Just relax as you read, and know that it doesn’t have to rhyme, that poetry can simply be a sequence of thoughts. No one will grade you on your reading experience!”
Rita also takes a relaxed approach to her own writing process.
“I don’t have a particular routine,” she says. “I just know when it is time to write. I take care of my grandkids two days a week, and I’m active in many areas of life besides poetry, so I do try to journal on Monday, Tuesday, and Friday to capture thoughts, experiences and ideas. Outside of that, I write poetry as I’m inspired.”
Learn more about Rita on her website, www.ritacoleman.com
Her collection is available for pre-sale on the publisher's website, https://www.finishinglinepress.com/product/and-yet-by-rita-coleman/
Upcoming Literary Events
• Monday, June 12, 1-3 p.m., Washington-Centerville Public Library, Centerville Library Lobby, 111 Spring Valley Road—This month’s “2nd Monday Authors” program features Lee Roy Young and his book, “Who’s the Greatest College Football Program of All Time?” and Chuck Gabringer and his book “Hockey in Dayton.” Visit www.wclibrary.info, click on “Programs” in the upper right corner, and then on “2nd Monday Authors” for more details.
• Friday, June 16 marks the deadline for registering for the full week option for the summer program for the Antioch Writers' Workshop at University of Dayton. See www.antiochwritersworkshop.com for details.
• Sunday, June 18, 2:30 p.m., Wright Memorial Public Library, 1776 Far Hills Avenue, Oakwood — Writers’ Café, a casual hang out for writers ages 18 and up and of all experience levels, meets the first Friday (7:00 p.m.) and third Sunday (at 2:30) of each month.