procrastination, anybody? Let’s see if I can actually write something.

I’m currently reading I.A. Richards’ Poetries and Sciences, a little book that has taken me weeks to get through. It’s not that Richards is tremendously difficult to get through (not really in this case, at least). . .this isn’t exactly immediately relevant to my dissertation, really, though Richards is quite emphatic in his belief that a a true poet creates true poetry in such a way that the process cannot be analyzed or studied. . .by the poet or anybody else. Richards argues for an organic view of the creative process, and he does acknowledge the ways in which other writers and outside factors influence the creative process. While I admire the fact that Richards is willing to admit that there may be parts of the creative process that just happen subconsciously that are difficult to pin down, I can’t help but see his overall view of creativity as too romantic and isolating. He gives so much credit to individual genius here that I’m not sure Richards would actually see any benefit in teaching creative writing. . .or, at least, in seeing it as a craft rather than an innate gift. Hmm. . .


Side note: I am reading the reissued 1970 edition of this work, which was published in 1926 and 1935 as Science and Poetry.

Two nice I.A. Richards resources:


I am an associate professor of English and writing center coordinator at Southwestern Oklahoma State University. I teach courses in composition, creative nonfiction, fundamentals of English, and peer tutoring.

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