If you don’t have skin

IF YOU DON’T HAVE SKIN YOU’RE NOT THERE: NEW LITERATURES, HASH TAG POETRY (#POETRY) AND WRITING STUDENTS

Abstract: This paper makes an argument for the inclusion of new technologies in the creative writing repertoire of pedagogies, in particular the social networking site Twitter. Learning how to compose 140 character poems and nanofictions exercises the imagination and writing skill. It is surprising how much can be conveyed in such a small space; when they’re good, the exchange becomes physical: poetry as food. Utilising so-called ‘Twitterverse’ inside and outside the classroom is a way of building an active writing community, a positive environment of learning, practice and publication. It is a way of engaging the Net Generation of students we have in our classrooms with runaway fictions and now-you-see-it-now-you-don’t poetry that, as John Gardner might argue, creates a dream in the reader’s minds, a dream that is both vivid and continuous.

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The Strange Bedfellows or Perfect Partners Papers: the refereed proceedings of the 15th conference of the Australasian Association of Writing Programs, 2010

ISBN: 978-0-9807573-3-0, eds Catherine Cole, Marcelle Freiman and Donna Lee Brien

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