Online internet courses by Call of the Page

Are you interested in a Call of the Page course? We run courses on haiku; tanka; tanka stories/prose; haibun; shahai; and other genres.

Please email Karen or Alan at our joint email address:
We will let you know more about these courses.

Call of the Page (Alan & Karen)

Friday, August 19, 2016

International online haiku courses - Individual and group feedback for haiku; tanka; haibun; and tanka stories / tanka prose


With Words is now known as "Call of the Page"

For information about our 2020 courses please do not hesitate to email Karen and Alan at:

Courses and one-to-one feedback plus Skype conversations:

Our new website:


The With Words online haiku courses, and related genres of tanka, haibun, tanka prose, and tanka stories - for September to December 2016.  

Please see details below.

With Words runs a number of online courses throughout the year:

Japanese Form Free-for-All!  

Pick your favorite Japanese form from tanka, senryu, haiku, haibun or tanka prose, and submit three times over two months.  A chance to see what your fellow writers are doing; what excites them about each form, and spread your Japanese form ‘wings'.  Optional prompt materials on inspiring subjects are offered for each assignment.

In-depth feedback is given on all work by Alan, and lesson prompts are written by Karen.

LEVEL:  intermediate; improvers.
GROUP SIZE: up to 6.
START DATE (for receipt of materials):  Monday 19th September 2016
FULL COST: £95 or US$125 
EARLY BIRD COST: £80 or US$105 (if paying by Monday 5th September 2016)
BOOKING: by payment via PayPal to


Haiku Beginners - Group Online Course

This is a new course.  

We were keen to introduce a purely entry level course, not only for people who are looking specifically to learn about writing haiku, but for those who are inspired to try this short form as a manageable way in to starting creative writing.  

With this course, we enjoy getting back to basics.  We will learn what to watch out for when reading haiku, and begin to write snippets, ready to write complete haiku by the end of the course.  

Participants should have at least three finished haiku by the end of the course, and ideas for continuing their writing.  

The course ends with an optional 20-minute phone or Skype chat with Alan to answer any outstanding questions about haiku in general or the student's work.

This is a really useful foundation course for beginners, and those who are between newcomers, beginners, and intermediate.  Highly recommended to get you grounded in what makes contemporary haiku tick!

LEVEL:  beginners at haiku, or beginners at creative writing.
GROUP SIZE: up to 6.
START DATE:  To be confirmed.  Please let us know if you would like to be put on the notification list.

Haiku - Group Online Course

This haiku course is suitable for those with some experience of either creative writing or haiku already, as it is quite advanced and technical (see below for haiku beginners). Participants submit three poems three times over the two-month course (total 9 poems) and may also add a couple of rewrite poems for final comments during that time.  The course ends with an optional 20 minute phone or Skype chat with Alan to answer any outstanding questions about haiku in general or the student's work.

LEVEL:  intermediate; improvers.
GROUP SIZE: up to 6.
START DATE (for receipt of materials):  Thursday 29nd September 2016
FULL COST: £95 or US$125 
EARLY BIRD COST: £80 or US$105 (if paying by Thursday 15th September 2016)
BOOKING: by payment via PayPal to
This particular course, Haiku - Group Online Course for intermediate and improvers is SOLD OUT!

Look out for news about the next intermediate/improvers haiku by us.


One to One Individual feedback

Feedback on your haiku on a one-to-one basis at any time, minimum booking ninety minutes.  

If you wish to book a block of hours (for instance for help with editing/creating a collection) then price reductions start with four hour bookings.

Call of the Page 
formerly known as With Words:
With Words running online courses in haiku (and other related genres) since June 2009, and in-person courses at various venues since 1999. 

Alan regularly has participants on his courses from around the world including USA; Canada; New Zealand; Australia; Singapore; Europe; U.K.; India etc…

"Thank you for your feed back. You make things seem so clear ...  So enjoyed reading the others' work too."  MB

"I have enjoyed the course tremendously and know that I will return to Alan's notes frequently as I continue to write tanka."  J

This course has been a really great experience for me. I have absorbed all the feedback and it has had an important impact on my writing.  I agree with everything Alan has said regarding my haiku and it is amazing that Alan has put his finger on every little shade and "flaw" of my haiku in such a detailed way.”  ML

“Trying to distil very personal moments and memories into a few lines is something I have never attempted before, in fact never thought of before - and for that I thank you.”  AS

“Hi Alan - thanks so much for this … I really had no idea there was so much to this art, and I'm completely fascinated. Your comments are extremely perceptive.”  MK

Alan Summers: Bio

Alan is Director/Lead Tutor of With Words, an international provider of literature, education and literacy projects, and With Words online workshops based around the Japanese genres. 

He is also the President of the United Haiku and Tanka Society:

He is the editor of the forthcoming publication:
Writing Poetry: the haiku way (2017)

He has been an expert on English-langauge haiku (and other Haikai Literature) for 25 years. Alan is a Recipient of the Japan Times Award (2002) for both haiku and renku, and the Ritsumeikan University of Kyoto Peace Museum Award for haiku (1998).

Alan is a Pushcart Prize nominated poet regularly a Teaching Artist at the USA-based Poetry Barn organisation for Haiku and Tanka, and also for Haibun (later in 2013).

Alan has been the haiku poet-in-residence for Cornell University, Mann Library:

He is a TEDx Speaker: Amazement of the ordinary- life through a haiku lens:

Alan was also invited to give a talk at Haiku News:

He is a founding editor for Bones Journal (contemporary haiku):,  and Haiku/Haibun Special Feature Editor, Lakeview International Journal of Literature and Arts.

Alan has been
•    General Secretary of the British Haiku Society (1998-2000)
•    Panel of Judges: The Biennial Sasakawa Prize for Original Contributions in the Field of Haikai (Sasakawa Foundation U.K. and British Haiku Society)
•    Embassy of Japan, (2009) Roving “Japan-UK 150 Haiku & Renga Poet-in-Residence”
•    Co-ordinator of The 1000 Verse Renga Project in partnership with Bath Libraries (U.K.) and supported by the BBC Poetry Season website
•    Bath Spa University undergraduate development project Haiku poet-in-residence (Autumn 2006 - Summer 2007)
•    Panel of Editors for the award-winning annual Red Moon Anthologies for best haikai literature (2000-2005)
•    Foundation Member of the Australian Haiku Society
•    a founding editor with Haijinx, showcasing humor in haiku

He was also co-founder/co-organizer, and Literature Director, of the 2010 Bath Japanese Festival.

Alan is published in around 100 haiku anthologies; and published in over fifteen languages including Japanese, and British Sign Language.

Japanese newspaper publications:
Yomiuri Shimbun; Asahi Shimbun; Mainichi Shimbun; The Japan Times; and The Mie Times.

"Astonishingly moving haiku"
YOMIURI SHIMBUN (Japan) January 2005

"Widely known haiku dry as vintage champagne"
YOMIURI SHIMBUN (14 million readers in Japan) September 2002

Anthologies include various leading haiku anthologies including the Norton poetry anthology on haiku: 

Haiku in English: The First Hundred Years ed. Jim Kacian, Allan Burns & Philip Rowland with an Introduction by Billy Collins (W. W. Norton & Company 2013)  

•    ‘Haiku World: An International Poetry Almanac’  
Kodansha International, Japan, ed. William Higginson ISBN 4770020902 (1996)

•    Iron Book of British Haiku 
(Iron Press; ISBN: 0906228670 First published 1998, Third print 2000) 
•    Stepping Stones:  a way into haiku  
    (British Haiku Society, 2007, ISBN 978-0-9522397-9-6)
•    The Humours of Haiku (Iron Press 2012) ISBN 978-0-9565725-4-7

Co-Editor of various Haiku-based anthologies including:

•    Parade of Life: Poems inspired by Japanese Prints ISBN: 09539234-2-8 (Poetry Can/Bristol Museum and Art Gallery/Japan21/Embassy of Japan 2002)

•    The Poetic Image - Haiku and Photography (Birmingham Words/National Academy of Writing Pamphlet 2006)
•    Fifty-Seven Damn Good Haiku by a Bunch of Our Friends (Press Here 2010 USA) ISBN 978-1-878798-31-2 
•    Four Virtual Haiku Poets (YTBN Press 2012) ISBN-10: 1478307544 ISBN-13: 978-1478307549
•    c.2.2. an anthology of short-verse poetry and haiku (YTBN Press 2013) ISBN-10: 1479304565 ISBN-13: 978-1479304561
•    Quest Gallery Through a glass darkly catalogue with haiku section by Alan Summers (July 2012)

Four Haiku Collections: 
•    “Does Fish-God Know” (YTBN Press 2012) 

“A must-have book for any haiku fan.”
Tracey Kelly, Chicago/Bath musician/journalist

“Thank you for writing such a vital work.” 
Paul David Mena, author of Tenement Landscapes (New York) published by Happa-no-Kofu (The Leaf-Miner Press) just after September 11 2001 

•    The In-Between Season  With Words Pamphlet Series (2012)
•    Sundog Haiku Journal: an Australian Year (Sunfast Press 1997 reprinted 1998) California State Library - Main Catalog Call Number: HAIKU S852su 1997
•    Moonlighting  British Haiku Society Intimations Pamphlet Series (1996)


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