Eckleburg: What is most rewarding about teaching the craft of writing?
Meg Eden: Being able to tell my students that you can be a writer, and sharing what I’ve learned in my journey thus far as a writer. I love being able to encourage them that their writing is good, that they can publish their work, and that they don’t need an MFA to do it. Getting to see another writer enter the field is the most rewarding experience for me.
Eckleburg: What was/is the most rewarding experience as a student of writing?
Meg Eden: Writing is a field where you’re never a “master” at it–there’s always something new to learn, to improve in, and there’s always new ideas and discoveries to be made. No matter how long I write for, I’ll always find an image that excites and surprises me. Every time I finish a poem, I’m excited to see what the next one will teach me.
Eckleburg: What is your favorite writing exercise or habit?
Meg Eden: I’m currently teaching “Why We Need Litmags”, a course on entering the publishing world, and “The Chapbook Workshop”, a course focused on creating a poetry manuscript. In September, I’ll also be leading a Poetry I workshop, which will walk through some of the essential elements to creating a strong poem, including prompts for inspiration.
My favorite writing exercise is probably the photo prompt. I love using vintage photos from antique stores or online to inspire my writing.
Meg Eden’s work has been published in various magazines, including Rattle, Drunken Boat, Poet Lore, and Gargoyle. Her poem “Rumiko” won the 2015 Ian MacMillan award for poetry, and she has four poetry chapbooks in print. She teaches at the University of Maryland. Check out her work at: www.megedenbooks.com