Emily Ramser is a queer activist-poet-scholar-educator living in Denton, Texas. She has been writing for as long as she can remember and has published hundreds of poems and creative nonfiction essays in the U.S., Canada, and France. She has been working with Weasel Press since it opened and plans to continue publishing with the press as long as they’ll have her.
In 2014, she published her first chapbook with Weasel Press, Toast is Just Bread That Put Up a Fight, which was later nominated for the Pushcart Prize. She then went on to release two more chapbooks, Conjuring Her and Uhaul: A Collection of Lesbian Love Poems, and a full-length blackout poetry collection, I Forgot How to Write When They Diagnosed Me. Her second full-length blackout poetry collection Looking For is coming out the summer of 2019. It explores how we view ourselves and our relationships in the digital age by using Tinder bios as source material. You can follow the project on Instagram at @tinderblackouts.
She is currently pursuing two M.A.s from Texas Woman’s University, one in English and one in Teaching with a concentration in English. She will be graduating in May of 2020 with both. She attended Salem College, the oldest women’s college in the United States, for her undergraduate degrees. There she received a B.A. with honors in English and a B.A. in Creative Writing.
Ramser is forever thankful for Dr. Edyta Oczkowicz, Dr. Janet Zehr, Dr. Jo Dulan, Professor Sheryl Monks, Professor Joseph Cooper, Dr. Marlin Adrian, Dr. Diane Lipsett, at Salem College and Dr. Katie McWain, Dr. Dundee Lackey, and Dr. Gray Scott at Texas Woman’s University for encouraging her writing (both academic and creative). She is also especially thankful for her thesis committee at Texas Woman’s University, Dr. Gretchen Busl and Dr. Ashley Bender, and her English cohort for encouraging her academic work on blackout and erasure poetry. She is also thankful to Weasel Patterson of Weasel Press for always supporting her unconventional poetry projects.
Ramser draws inspiration from the beat generation, blackout and erasure poetry, queer theory, and visual art. She has been merging her love of art and writing more and more lately through her exploration of visual poetry. She utilizes a mixture of collaging, watercolor, and digital manipulation to create blackout and visual poems. Ramser believes that poetry is art and art is poetry, some versions just use more words than others. She hopes to help bring about a better appreciation and understanding of visual poetry through her writing and academic investigation.
She hopes to renew a love of poetry in younger generations by teaching them how to make poetry their own. It doesn’t have to be written in proper grammar or follow any rules. Poetry is whatever you want it to be.
To see more of her work, you can check out here on her website or follow her on twitter at @RamserisReading.