Preparing for a Poetry Reading
TIPS FOR PREPARING FOR A POETRY READING
Select a few of your best poems and either memorize them, or practice reading them so that you can recite them with confidence.
Consider the order of the poems, and the flow from one to the other. Do they make sense in the order in which you're planning to read them?
Find out how much stage time you have so that you know how many poems to read. I was planning on reading 9 poems and then once I got there and got a better sense of the event, I realized 9 may be too much so I only read 4.
Be flexible, go prepared to read a certain amount and have a back up plan for if you're asked to share more (or less).
Bring a clipboard with a sign-up sheet and collect email addresses for your mailing list.
If possible have a friend shoot of video of your performance so you can refer to it later or share it on social media.
Lastly, have fun. Don't over think it. I was nervous about reading and then it turned out to be no biggie at all. Most of the time, the anticipation is the worst part.