“A Piece of Work”

Although it is debated whether or not he originated these, we can thank William Shakespeare for being the first to record these now common phrases in his famous works. Maybe he was just recording the language of his time or maybe he really did make them up. But either way they have shaped how we talk today. There are a good amount of people who don’t know why Shakespeare is so popular or argue that he is no longer relevant, but he is! And people don’t even realize it! I, and many others, quote the famous playwright everyday without even knowing.

Around 400 years ago, William Shakespeare was taking chances by using colorful language in his works. He was taking chances with the language he was using and now he is one of the most famous writers of all time. Besides these phrases, we can all learn a valuable lesson from Will: take chances with your writing! There are few people who become famous for being average. Add some color to your poetry, plays or prose by using some of the “The Bards” phrases or try making up your own. You never know what will stick!

Here’s another interesting blurb about Shakespeare’s language by Bernard Levin: http://inside.mines.edu/~jamcneil/levinquote.html

And a special “thank you” to everybody who submitted to this semester’s Centripetal. I can already tell it is going to be one of the best issues to date!



A sentimental story on why you should submit your work to Centripetal

As a tribute to Centripetal and because the submission deadline for this semester’s edition is fast approaching (Friday, March 15th) I thought I would dedicate this blog to my experience here at PSU and what Centripetal has done for me as a writer. I would also like to encourage everyone who has thought about submitting their work to do so. Hopefully after reading this blog you will understand just the effect you can have on someone else.

I first transferred to Plymouth State my sophomore year. It was the fall of 2011. One of my first and most memorable moments at PSU was being at one of the student activity fairs and getting my hands on my first ever issue of Centripetal, which was Volume 12 issue 2 which came out that previous spring.  When I got back to my dorm room I read over the poetry in that book and was just awestruck. I could not believe how beautiful and skilled all of the poetry and prose was in this college literary magazine. One poem in particular really made an impression on me. It was Abbie Morin’s (class of 2012) poem titled “Tagged.” I instantly connected with her style and the loved the simplicity of her words that came out so elegantly. This poem really struck something in me because it reminded me of the way I also write or try to write.

Up until that initial experience with Centripetal I had been what I refer to as a “closet writer.” I only ever shared my poetry with close friends and would have never dreamed of submitting to the school’s literary magazine or reading at an ‘open mic’ event. Strangely, I found myself seeking out these open mic events and sitting in to watch my peers perform while trying to build my courage to do the same thing. When I finally gained the courage it was one of the most euphoric experiences I had ever had. I always get nervous before I read even now; my disposition wouldn’t have it any other way. But now I attend every ‘open mic’ and I read at every one I can attend.

I went from a very soft-spoken and intimidated young writer to being a more self-assured and fulfilled one in what seems over night in retrospect. Since my first encounter with Centripetal as just an impressed reader, I have now been published in the most recent issue (Fall 2012). I feel a connection with the writing community and my peers. I have made many friendships I don’t anticipate I would have had it not been for Poets & Writers. Lastly, I’ve opened myself up to growing experiences I would have denied myself had I not found Centripetal and been so inspired. Now, I will be a student reader at the April 4th Eagle Pond Poetry Author Series reading casing Dick Allen at the Silver Center. I’ve even applied to Bucknell’s Seminar for Young Poets under the counsel of Plymouth State’s very own Liz Ahl (she also has done more for me as a writer of poetry than is possible to express).

I hate to expose my sappy-side but my whole life would be drastically different today if it had not been for that very first time I read Centripetal. So, for those of you who are on the fence about submitting your work, please remember this: you never know the impact you or your work may have on another young writer. Take a chance, submit, and I swear you’ll be the better for trying something you’ve never done before or never thought you could do.

Write, Write, Write!

Happy Thursday! Don’t Forget to Submit to Centripetal; the deadline is rapidly approaching! Take a risk and show some Whit-man!

“You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.” -Wayne Gretzky


Centripetal Deadline Coming up Fast!

Here is a feature poem from Jodi Van Praet in the 11th Edition (Spring 2006) of Centripetal. Check it out, then write write write! 🙂


I trip on your shoes and bump my head

on the cabinet I left open.

The pain in my head and the rage in my chest


The pain wants me.

The anger wants you.

I throw a shoe at the cabinet.

You walk in, shaking your head at

my clumsiness.

Gently you lead me to the couch,

kiss my forehead, watch me cry.

You open your mouth to speak–I think

If you tell me it’s PMS, I will kill you.