Writer’s Digest Wednesday Poetry Prompt #445: Special Day

virgin-759376_960_720

Krystal Ball’s Daily Dose of Snake Oil

Virgo (Virgin, or so she claims)
(Aug 23-Sep 22)

Salutations and congratulations!  Today is your special day!  There may be rain heading your way, but you won’t let it pour on your parade, because your sunny personality (whether hidden under an umbrella or out there for all to see like the light side of the moon) will not be dampened.  Yin is out and Yang is in!

Your longing for love has been realized; a love story is writing itself—your self-love story!  Your soulmate is getting hot, hotter, but you are already on fire; if you haven’t met this kindred spirit already, perhaps it’s as easy as looking into the mirror.

There are some important decisions to be made; whether big or small, what you choose will determine your future, if not present, happiness, so go with your gut (which operates optimally when full.)  Today is the beginning of the rest of your life!

Drink more water to your health, and you just might find yourself in the right place at the right time, or not at the wrong place at the wrong time.

A bit of good fortune is heading your way some day in the future, so be prepared by being there, like really there.  Live in the moment and not in your head, because it may pass you by if you’re not paying attention.

Something big is coming!

http://www.writersdigest.com/whats-new/wednesday-poetry-prompts-445

Advertisements

Book Review: Writing Down the Bones

44905

Though I like the narrative of Stephen King’s On Writing better (i.e. more concrete, less abstract), this book had many more plusses than minuses. The title fits because Goldberg takes a page from Strunk and White’s advice to “omit needless words,” not burdening hers with excessive description or detail (just a handful of unnecessary quotes). Though I checked this out from the library, I will end up purchasing it, so I can go through it with my highlighter, as I cannot possibly remember all the wonderful little tidbits.

*

Goldberg wrote in a non-academic way, which I appreciated, as well as the fact that the creatively-titled chapters were short. I don’t often get a chance to read till the end of the day in bed because I spend the day working on my own writing, so short chapters make it easy to find a stopping place.

*

Though I realize all writers have different experiences when it comes to their craft, I’ve never heard an imaginary voice telling me that I shouldn’t be a writer. Writing has always been the one thing I’m sure of. In fact, I am more likely to think something is good when it isn’t (which I figure it out a year later when I go back and reread some of my old blog posts).

If I had to choose my favorite takeaway from this book, it was making “verb columns” (page 95-97). It was such a fresh and innovative idea to make verbs pop.

Conversely, I found the excessive references to Katagiri Roshi distracting (and somewhat annoying, as it felt like proselytizing), especially since most of the quotes didn’t seem to flow into the narrative.

*

Being a huge fan of humor, I appreciated the hilarious list about why one writes (page 122). This is what Goldberg is good at—writing short. Maybe because Goldberg is a poet and not a storyteller. I consider myself the opposite. (Even my poetry tells a story.)

Through reading books from authors who fictional works I don’t particularly enjoy, I’ve discovered that we can learn not only from experimenting with all kinds of writing but how to write from all kinds of writers.

What I Learned from Writing for the College Newspaper

20180713_145830.jpg

When I wrote a book review,
I learned how much I enjoyed doing so,
for reading it and writing about it
was like getting two for the price of one.

When I wrote a review on a vegan café,
I tried something new.

When I wrote a series of articles on volunteer opportunities,
I found out that skills and talent—
not just time and money—
were also needed.

When I wrote an article on college internships,
I learned that investing in yourself
always requires you to invest your time.

When I wrote a movie review,
I learned how to write movie reviews;
I also learned that I much preferred writing book reviews.

When I wrote an article about Toastmasters,
it led to Phi Theta Kappa
becoming involved with the organization.

When I wrote about clubs on campus,
I found out that worthwhile clubs don’t just meet,
but serve their local community.

When I wrote a story on one night of my life,
I found my journalistic niche.

When I wrote a mock syllabus,
I began to explore more forms of hybrid writing.

When I wrote about art on campus,
my interest in art and making it increased.

When I wrote a story on what I had learned from math,
I learned that it wasn’t math I learned (or at least remembered)—
it was that I could do difficult things,
and that math,
for non-math majors,
wasn’t just about solving equations,
but sharpening that attention to detail
that solving those equations required.

When I covered the literati and amateur nights on campus,
I learned how to gather quotes the introvert’s way.

When I wrote a story about professors switching careers,
I learned that it was never too late to change your mind—
that no education was ever wasted,
for it all led to our beautiful present.

When I wrote about editing a literary journal,
I learned that the process could be as interesting as the product.

When I wrote about a beloved professor who had passed away,
I learned that art wasn’t just good,
but it could be used to do good.

Through writing for my college newspaper,
I learned that I would never want to be a teacher—
save to my very own—
but I could be a tutor,
a mentor—
I could help others become better.

What I learned through doing,
I learned through writing—
in ways I never would have imagined.

But most of all,
I learned that there is a place for creativity in every vocation.

Summer Writing Mini-Workshop: Writing Truths

coffee

You can be a reader without being a writer, but you can’t be a writer without being a reader.

Nothing beats the tags “he said,” “she said.” Anything else can distract from the dialogue, especially adverbs (http://www.dictionary.com/browse/adverb?s=t).
You need never say “he shrugged his shoulders” or “she nodded her head.” “He shrugged” or “she nodded” is sufficient.

The first-person point-of-view is limiting; the third-person point-of-view is limitless.

If you tell your story from too many different points-of-view, you run the risk of readers being more interested in one person’s story than another’s.

Words, to the writer, are like colors to the artist; diction is knowing how to mix them.

Don’t just write what you know, but also what you love.

It’s okay if your novel has the preexisting condition of being terrible. Your insurance is in the editing.

Write every day, even if it’s nothing more than a couplet. (My minimum is 300 words.) Freewriting counts. The water cannot flow until the faucet is turned on.

If you have too many flashbacks, you may have started your story in the wrong place.

Your characters had lives before you chose to write about them, but never feel you must “catch the reader up.” The reader cares about the present, & the past, only insofar as it affects the present.

If you have a family, you have a gift that keeps on giving.

#Fiction Friday: #Micropoetry from the Book

Mormoni

Conversion was an event for the Protestants,
a process for the Mormons,
but as for me,
it was an event that led to a process.

All the Nolan women had slender fingers—
fingers to play the piano & the strings of men’s hearts—
siren songs to keep them close.

Caitlin’s heart & soul lived in her childhood faith,
& would become her comfort,
even as the one I had never clung to
would become an anathema to me.

He said curves like mine were unfinished sculpture.
I was his clay, even as Mother was God’s stone
to chisel away until there was nothing left.

Diamonds went with white,
pearls, with black;
I saw Mother as the diamond—
I, the pearl,
& David as the man who adorned us
perfectly.

Writer’s Digest Wednesday Poetry Prompt #444: Four

150px-Foursquare

The Foursquare Gospel

Jesus Christ the Savior–
not the ghost of a mortal or a legend of The Fall,
but the earthly flesh and heavenly spirit
of an extraterrestrial,
who came to us a form we could
understand,
with words only some of us ever would–
words powerful enough to compel some to love their enemies
and others to hate their families.
This was true omniscience.

The Baptizer–
for asking others to do
what even He had to.
No ventriloquist, was He,
for the voice from Heaven
was as much His as the voice
from the clump of cells
that made up His body,
for if He was truly everywhere,
then in our cells,
He is also.
This was true omnipresence.

The Healer–
for hands that crafted cradles and
the crosses that would become
His temporary open coffin;
for garments, water, and clay
He turned healing and holy,
and blood that transmitted without needles,
with which He could save the worst of humankind.
This was true omnipotence.

The Coming King–
whose crown was as luminous as
the sun’s corona,
illuminating this Being who had
the mane of a lion and
the roar of a lamb and
a passion unmatched between any two lovers
at their heights.
Though even He knows not when to return
to this rocky world He lay his life down for.

http://www.writersdigest.com/whats-new/wednesday-poetry-prompts-444