Text in-and-of itself can be a great starting point for creation. Many contemporary poetry techniques provide ways to begin creating, often by using found text. Procedural techniques, erasure poems, cut-ups and found poems all can become the building blocks of a work, as a script, a score, as visual elements or simply as a process for opening up new ideas. Here are a few immediate and accessible techniques for a group to develop material from found text.

Found Poems: In a visual world surrounded by text, we're also surrounded by poetry. Found poems can be created by taking a selection of text out of context and presenting it on its own. This can involve cutting phrases out of newspapers and paper ephemera, or taking photos of text in public spaces.

Erasure Poems: This involves taking an existing text and erasing portions of it to produce a new meaning or even a critique of the existing meaning of the text. This can easily be applied to books, newspapers, magazine or any other dense collection of text.

Cut-ups: This is a technique made popular by Byron Gysin and William S. Burroughs. Artists can take any existing text and cut it up into pieces of varying size. They then take those pieces and arrange them into a new text at random. It relies on chance and the surreal to create new texts that produce unexpected meanings and associations.

Procedural Poetry: This is a kind of conceptual poetry that can range from highly sophisticated to very simple. The artist takes a set of limitations and produces a collection of text. These limitations can include sources (twitter, a school book, the poetry of Basho, song titles on spotify), formal types (only words starting with the letter E, proper names, adjective/noun combinations), or a particular process (using search engines, opening random pages, picking the first sentence on every page of a book). There's an almost endless variation and these can be as random or intentional as desired.

︎︎︎from Gabriel Saloman