The new JMWW is online with lots of great poetry and prose, as well as my latest article on how to give a good reading. Here's the opening:
"Years ago, I hired someone via friend who called himself a "reading coach." He was an actor who ran a theatre in New York and had recently published a collection of short stories through one of the Top Five publishers. I was in Baltimore, but I e-mailed him anyway, asking if he made out-of-state calls and how much he charged. Turns out he had friends in the area and was already going to be in town in a few weeks, so we scheduled a session. So you don't think I'm crazy, I won't tell you the ridiculous amount he charged.
For two hours, he put me through my paces. I read poems softly, then loudly. I moved from loud to soft and back. I did the same with fast and slow. I stood and did stretches. I hummed and did scales. I lay on the floor and breathed in various ways while he pushed on either my upper chest or my stomach (he made sure I was comfortable with that first) to indicate where I should center the breath. The ultimate was me standing in the middle of the room reading while he circled me in his loose, fluid way of moving, and called out instructions: "Faster, slower, louder, softer, look at me, pause," occasionally coming over to pull my shoulders back or lift my head. I often felt pretty silly."