Canada Writes

Wondering how to write an extraordinary poem? Be inspired by the ordinary

CBC Books is publishing a writing tip each week.
Ordinary things can sometimes inspire great writing. (Shutterstock)

This writing tip is from the 2018 CBC Poetry Prize winner, Natalie Lim.

"Don't underestimate the power of the ordinary. When you're out and about, be ready to jot down street signs, graffiti, snippets of passing conversations and anything else that catches your attention. Take pictures of sidewalk art and weird statues. Make a note when the view out the bus window reminds you of your favourite song. Remember the sound of a man's blue suit flapping in the wind as he sprints past you on the street. Where is he going and why? You might be surprised where the most mundane things can take you if you write them down and come back to them later."

Natalie Lim is a poet, occasional musician, unashamed nerd and soon-to-be-graduate of the school of communication at Simon Fraser University. She won the 2018 CBC Poetry Prize for  Arrhythmia.



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