Off Campus Writers' Workshop - OCWW

Taylor Byas - Making Room for Mess and Magic

  • January 05, 2023
  • 9:30 AM - 12:00 PM



Using the prose poem as a formal foundation, this workshop will explore how removing the lyric “I” from the poem can shift the poetic landscape. We will participate in two generative writing exercises, which are designed to help students step out of their comfort zone/writing tics and to lean into strangeness, magic, and the illogical. In the words of Gabrielle Bates, we’re shooting for “a larger aperture—more light.”

Taylor Byas is a Black poet and essayist. Originally from Chicago, she moved to Alabama for six years, where she received both her Bachelor’s degree in English and her Master’s degree in English (Creative Writing concentration) from the University of Alabama at Birmingham. Taylor currently lives in Cincinnati, Ohio, where she is a third year PhD student and Albert C. Yates Scholar at the University of Cincinnati studying poetry. She is also an Assistant Features Editor for The Rumpus. 

She has received five Pushcart and six Best of the Net nominations, and has won a Best Microfiction Award. She is also the 1st Place Winner of the 2020 Poetry Super Highway Contest, the 2020 Frontier Poetry Award for New Poets, the 2021 Adrienne Rich Poetry Award, a finalist for the 2020 Frontier OPEN Prize, and an Honorable Mention for the 2021 Ninth Letter Literary Award in Poetry.

Her chapbook, Bloodwarm, is out now from Variant Lit (2021). Her second chapbook, Shutter, is forthcoming from Madhouse Press in March of 2022{This is past}. Her debut full-length poetry collection, I Done Clicked My Heels Three Times, is forthcoming from Soft Skull Press in the Spring of 2023. She is represented by Rena Rossner of The Deborah Harris Agency. 

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