Monthly Archives: March 2016

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Never settle for unruly passengers

logan

[Five Minute Poetry] watermelon + goddess + photosynthesis

She lies in the garden somewhere between delight and passivity

Soaking up sun like sweet cream against her skin

She breathes in the honeysuckle and the meadow-born fragrances

And though the life she has lived has made her hard on the outside

Thick and defended, a layer of skin and flesh that is marked

By doubt, regret and indiscretion

Inside, she is sweet

And the rays of the afternoon are hers to feed on because

She has the glow of her solitude

The goddess of utter abandonment

Who wants for no man, no company,

Save the whispers of the orchids

The melon knows not that she is anything but plant life like the rest

Summer goddess of the passing breeze

Like the rest

And the flowers do not disappoint

As everything else has in its way.

Like What You See? Let’s Do Coffee!

That wasn’t necessarily supposed to rhyme, but it did!

I’ve added a new page above called “Let’s Get Coffee!” If you really like a post or a story or a poem or something, click it to buy me a cup of coffee! Or a lot of coffee! Your choice!

PS – If you’re in a reader, you can also just click here. That works too.

Like What You See? Let’s Do Coffee!

That wasn’t necessarily supposed to rhyme, but it did!

I’ve added a little button over to the right. If you really like a post or a story or a poem or something, click it to buy me a cup of coffee! Or a lot of coffee! Your choice!

PS – If you’re in a reader, you can also just click here. That works too.

Paper: It’s Not Just for Wrapping

So this weekend I did something that I never thought I would do.

I printed the entire draft of my novel.

Well, I didn’t print it. I had it printed at Fedex. I got it 3-hole-punched and then I purchased a binder for it to live in. I also double-spaced the draft so I had room for notes and line-editing.

And y’all. Y’all.

I will never not print my first draft of anything ever again.

It’s so satisfying. And not because of any sort of aesthetic, like the feel of the paper or the scratch of the pen, although those things are very nice. No, it’s because I’m not seeing it the way I see every single other part of my day: on the other side of a screen. I don’t find myself going cross-eyed at walls of text. I’m not terrified of cutting and pasting chapters because I think that at that moment my computer is going to crash or Internet demons will steal my words away into an oblivion of deletion.

If I want to move a chapter, I literally pick it up and rearrange it.

If I like a passage, I can draw a giant smiley face.

If I hate something, I can punch it without replacing my monitor.

Try it. Print out a short story or a poem or a blog post. Look at it with a pen in your hand. Really read it. Write on it. Cross shit out. Underline words. Doodle in the margins.

It’s a completely different experience.

FINISH HIM!

Not too long ago, I asked a friend what he would be interested in seeing me talk about on my blog. And he gave me a very good topic. He asked me what I do when my inspiration runs dry mid-writing or when another idea comes along that captivates me despite being in the middle of something else. Do I shelve my current project? Come back to it later? Or what?

The answer to that is really that it depends.

It used to be that I would have multiple projects going all at the same time, but I found over time that it stressed me out. I would realize that nothing was finished – I couldn’t put any one thing out because they were all in states of incomplete-ness. I would find that I was generally just so easily distracted that I could go on and on and stockpile a million works-in-progress. I would have this on-again-off-again relationship with all of my work — I would love it one day and hate the sight of the next. Ultimately I found myself accomplishing…very little.

Now, I try to finish things. Or I at least try to get things broken down into pieces that can be ‘finished’ for a time so I can do a little bit of something else and then come back to it. Or, if absolutely necessary, I finish it even if it means it isn’t absolutely perfect. Perfect is an illusion anyway.

Mostly, though, I do try to balance. For example: I have a several things I’m writing while I’m also working on editing my novel from NaNoWriMo. I know that I cannot do this all in one sitting and I also know that I will lose interest if it’s the only thing I’m doing. So, instead of focusing on just that for as long as it takes, I’m doing it in chapter chunks. That way, I’m satisfied with my progress while balancing out my wandering interests.

My recommendation if you find yourself getting burnt out in the middle of something and getting drawn to something else is this: give it 24 hours. Make a note of this new fantastic idea and sleep on it. If it’s still amazing the next day and you want nothing more than to sink your teeth into it, set a date for when you are coming back to the project you’re currently on. Literally. Get a calendar, plot out how long you think this awesome new something will go and then say, “Okay, on May 1, I’m going to pick this other thing back up.” You’ll know two things by May 1: if that new thing was really as great as it seemed and if the original project is worth going back to.

Are you a starter or a finisher? Do you chronically collect works-in-progress, or do you try to finish anything you start, no matter how crappy it gets? Tell me about it on my Facebook!

 

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We are so much bigger on the inside

eveningskies