Spruce Books (Sasquatch Books/PenguinRandomHouse) /
Forthcoming October 20, 2020 / Available for Pre-Order Now:
(If you’d like a signed copy, please buy your book from Malaprop’s, the authors’ hometown bookstore and, at checkout, add a note to have it signed.)
A guided journal perfect for everyone from developing writers to those looking to deepen their craft.
Work with award-winning poets Jessica Jacobs and Nickole Brown to develop your voice as a writer. Refined in classrooms around the country with students ranging from teens to senior citizens and everyone in between, these prompts are designed to get you writing.
Solidly grounded in the practice of awareness and writing though the body, this book will help deepen your self-awareness, your empathy for others, and your appreciation of your environment—inside and out. Many prompts also contain quotes from some of today’s most exciting poets to inspire and guide you.
“[I]t’s time to give yourself a gift or maybe share this lovely volume with your daughter, son, cousin, best pal, teacher, or next-door neighbor. Why not? Why keep talking yourself out of lines you might write? We’ve all read so many fascinating texts this past year and have had more than enough complicated thoughts. Write It! might be one of the friendliest poetry tool kits/notebooks ever. … Readers will learn about writers and quotations, multiple perspectives, possibilities, and tactics while feeling deeply befriended all the way. Who knows where you might go? I plan to write on every page.”
—Naomi Shihab Nye, Young People’s Poet Laureate, January book pick for the Poetry Foundation
“Jessica Jacobs and Nickole Brown are two poets of presence, passion, and purpose. I am constantly learning from their brilliant poems and how they both inhabit the natural world around with them with immense light and graceful precision. This book of beautiful writing prompts is a safe space to explore the depths of your imagination, overflowing with favorite lines from beloved writers and soul-stirring questions. Write It! will help you deepen your writing practice as well as your relationship to identity, place, and community. Sometimes there is nothing more terrifying than a blank page or blinking cursor. Sometimes you need the right nudge and spark, these one hundred prompts are lit matches waiting for you”
—Tiana Clark, I Can’t Talk About The Trees Without The Blood
“Write It! is an absolute pleasure, a gentle, encouraging guide for discovering the stories around and within us. Jacobs and Brown serve as fairy godpoets, bringing us the words and wisdom of beloved writers along with prompts to inspire and embolden. This book asks us to be curious and open, to find ourselves in the mirror and on the page. It shows us how to eavesdrop on the world and our own hearts. “
—Janet McNally, The Looking Glass
“These soul-searching prompts inspire conversations with oneself, our world, and poets who have come before us. As a teacher and author, I’m equally excited about sharing this book with my students and diving in myself!”
—Nicole Kronzer, Unscripted
“If, poet, you were always suspicious of the efficacy of prompts as a poetic practice, then you need to prop open this sophisticated and deeply knowledgeable collection of ideas and inspirations. There’s nothing cute or precious about these hard-thought and useful mind and heart starters. Jacobs and Brown bring an Asheville focus on nature and openness to the page.”
—Brian Lampkin, a proprietor of Scuppernong Books, O. Henry Magazine
“Remember when you longed to be a writer as a teenager, and it seemed that inspiration was everywhere? A new book from award winning poets Jessica Jacobs and Nickole Brown aims to recapture those fevered days—and make you a better wordsmith in the process.”
—Christina Barber-Just, Smith Alumnae Quarterly
Responses from Educators Using Write It! in the Classroom
“In my work helping Montessori Middle Schools develop humanities curricula, I am always on the lookout for materials that foster independent work and independent thinking. Write It! is just such a resource. It can be used as a personal writing space/journal or as a collection of daily prompts for the classroom. For teachers the thematic arrangement of the sections, Who are You, Where are You, Who are Others and Where do we go From Here, make it easy to integrate writing practice into other parts of the curriculum. For example, the Who Are You section is easily adapted to use in social emotional lessons as well as anti-bias anti-racist discussions; while the Where are You section is a wonderful springboard to studies of local history and ecology. . . . Usually I avoid using collection of writing prompts in class because so many of them pre-suggest the kind of answers that can be given. This collection avoids that kind of sin, and remains open ended and wholistic. “—Barbara Roether, Adolescent Guide/Consultant, Berkshire Montessori School
“This third Pandemic Semester, I’m teaching a course called “Poetry as Equipment for Living.” It’s meant to be balm, solace for students who have been fighting to keep themselves sane and functional in a world that has pulled itself out from under their not-very-old feet…Write It! has been perfect. We’ll only use fourteen of the prompts, but they’ll have gotten into the practice of writing in a journal without scary blank pages, helped by Jessica Jacobs and Nickole Brown’s prompts that are both freeing and demanding. They’ll have the rest of the book to keep going back to. I have lots of books of prompts, and I lean on prompts to get me out of my own troughs. This book, though, is different. It offers itself as a gift and approaches the reader-writer as though their being and being-in-the-world are worthy of being written down.”—Devon Miller-Duggan, Assistant Professor, University of Delaware
“The 15 week poetry class follows the design of Write it! Students can choose any prompt from the first section, “Who am I?,” and then every three weeks we move to the next section. This follows our tendency to write our own selves first, which must be done, and then moves the students outward into paying attention to the world. The book is at once designed to help break up the rumination that can characterize depression and develops global stewardship. Students who choose the same prompt as friends are amazed to see how one prompt can go in so many different directions. The book is building a learning community. Students come to class excited to share their poems and to hear their classmates’.”—Laura Hope-Gill, Assistant Professor of Writing & Director of The Thomas Wolfe Center for Narrative, Lenoir-Rhyne University—Asheville
Prompts to cultivate curiosity and delight: