Today is Shakespeare’s birthday (and deathday). In honor of this, and in a response to a challenge I’ve recently received regarding my lack of non-academic writing and the subsequent withering of my soul, I propose the following challenge to any of my poetic readers (this means, among others, you, Candice):
Write a sonnet a day for one year.
They don’t have to be publishable; they don’t have to be brilliant, or even all that good. But imagine the fantastic life-journalling power, as well as writing improvement and mental discipline such a task would give.
So as of today, and up through the 22nd of April next year, I am going to focus on writing a sonnet a day. Will you join me?
If so, will you send your more promising ones to me as comments via this post? If you so desire, I might even give the better ones their own posting positions, with full credit to authors (of course).
- The poems must be sonnets, not in any other form.
- They may be either Petrarchan, English, or any other generally recognized sonnet form.
- Near rhyme, slant rhyme, and occasional emphatic uses of non-iambic meter are perfectly acceptable.
- Topics can be anything that comes to your mind throughout the day—humor, politics, academics, rants about the job—are all perfectly acceptable, though you must meet the standard structure of whatever sonnet form you use for the given sonnet.
- Try not to use inverted sentences, archaic language, or other hack tools just to make a proper meter or rhyme! (The point is to improve our literary discipline.)
- If you miss a day, get back on the wagon. Better to have written 293 sonnets than none at all.
On, on, oh mighty steeds!