Poet Rob Carney Visits Cedar City

Poet Rob Carney recently visited Cedar City on Wednesday, March 4, to offer advice to Southern Utah University students and share his work. 

Originally from Washington, the poet is a professor of English and literature at Utah Valley University and lives in Salt Lake City. 

Carney has published six books of poems, including “The Book of Sharks” (which won the 2019 Artists of Utah Magazine Book and Poetry Award) and “88 Maps.” His new book “Facts and Figures” will come out in April.

Carney’s work has appeared in Sugar House Review, an “independent, nonprofit poetry publisher based out of Utah.” 

Nano Taggart, the Editor of Sugar House Review, is also the professor of the Literary Journal Editing class offered at Southern Utah University. This course gives SUU students the opportunity to select, edit and publish submissions for SUU’s literary magazine, the Kolob Canyon Review.

Carney visited the KCR class on Wednesday on Taggart’s request. Carney shared his work, offered a writing prompt for the students and hosted a question and answer session.

During his time in the KCR class, the poet explained different forms of poetry and what he likes to focus on when writing. 

“I like to pick forms before hand. I’ve had experiences where something sucks and I’m like, ‘I need to put this into a form.’ Mostly I like to have an idea before I start writing.”

Carney advised students to utilize each other as aspiring writers. 

“Get together with each other. You’re in a group right now where you know [your peers] are going to take your seriously and offer advice,” Carney said. 

Later that evening, Carney read his work at the Artisans Art Gallery at 7 p.m. which was open to the public and free of charge.

When asked what he does when he’s uninspired, Carney explained he has no secret to share.

“I just don’t write. And I think that’s okay. There have been periods of time where I’ve thought I would never write again, [but I always do,]” Carney said.

For more information on Rob Carney and to read his work, click here.


Story by: Elizabeth Armstrong
Photos by: Elizabeth Armstrong and artistsofutah.org