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Writing Tips

Poetry Month writing tip: Tanis Rideout

All this month on Canada Writes, we're rolling out tips from Canadian poets. Today: former CBC Poetry Prize winner Tanis Rideout on the importance of readiness.

"My greatest tip is simple: to read and write. That’s where it all starts. You have to read—there’s a whole conversation already going on and if you want to be a part of it you have to listen so you can know what you want to and can contribute.

And then write. All the time. I write most days, certainly when I’m working on a project. You have to show up at the computer or paper. You can’t wait for inspiration; it doesn’t hit that often and you want to make sure you’re sitting there ready if it does finally show up."

Tanis Rideout won the CBC Poetry Prize in 2009. Her first novel, Above All Things, will be available in June 2012 from McClelland and Stewart. She has performed on CBC Radio, BookTelevision, ZeD and Citytv. Her work has appeared in a range of publications, including A Room of One’s Own, Black Heart Magazine, grey borders, Spire, Pontiac Quarterly, Fireweed, echolocation, Witual and Chart, and has been short-listed for a number of prizes, including the Bronwen Wallace Memorial Award.

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