Saturday, 30 October 2010

Halloween Poem

What self respecting writer can pass up Halloween as an excuse to write? Not me that's for sure! Written for my sister, Roxanne, I present my own version of Halloween Poetry for 2010:

All comes to life on Halloween night

Vampy ghouls to give a fright

Dracula’s kids all rampant riot

For sweets galore, they all shout it.

.

Galloping snakes, phantoms beware

Tonight you’ll get a really good scare,

You can’t escape by shutting your eyes

Otherwise you’re in for a nasty surprise

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We the kids of Halloween night,

Have come to get our sweetie delight

Knock on the door and give a big scare

Toffee, jelly, we don’t care

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We hit the streets in the thousands

Hiding within, our sneaky companions.

Dracula’s come out for adults alone,

With we the children, out for more.

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So please don’t- lock up your door

We’d hate to trick you, oh what a bore!

We the kids of Halloween night

Have come to get our sweetie delight.

.

Trick or treat, we knock at your door

Adults beware of our Halloween song

For all comes to life on Halloween night

Dressed up as children to give a big fright.

Structure that Book!

Any work of art is a messy room at one point, but something such as a book needs order; draws for the titles, boxes for chapters, why should poetry be any different?

Taking prime example from Sylvia Plath’s ‘Ariel’, as I do a lot, we see how she opens it with the birth of her son, and ends with ‘edge’, being the final poem dictating death in Its entirety. Perhaps an easier way to depict this hieroglyph would be by taking example from the book I’m currently writing.

Chon-Ji, a narrative poetry book, dictates the creation of two beings, Earth, the mother, and Heaven, the son. I follow them exploring their individuality, and developing their vanity to the point of no return. It ends with the end of one life cycle and the beginning of the next, as the beginning does. By no means is it a feel good read, but it is certainly true on many levels.

So how do we edit such an eyesore to begin with, being the tidy room not the book? You first need to find its, as I call it, ‘grounding point’, what is the basis or reason for Its being? From there it’s simply a chain of events, and side thoughts progressing to the inevitable and all too soon, end. Naturally it is my own opinion, but I can not see how it could lead any writer far wrong.

There is of course, the well loved second method, of slap dash and hope for the best, but I feel, as do many other writers that writing reflects the life of the writer. Just as there is a spring before summer, childhood before old age, the book should have a definite start and beginning. If you intend to make a life of this choice you will look back in years to come and see how each book you wrote was a reflection of that point in your life. You may find you write about every day things, such as walking the dog, buying a newspaper, or philosophising a poetical narrative about the meaning of life, in short your writing reflects your nature.

Naturally this has set cogs turning in your head, as you pause from throwing your ideas, pal-mal into the closet and draws, you wonder, ‘what if there is a my way’.

Of course the answer is, you’re right! It is your miracle, so it reflects you, providing you’re not the lazy type. Starting with the middle and saying, ‘yep, that’ll do’ rather than acknowledging that it is you’re style, and having it in that order that gives you that warm fuzzy feeling inside.

So for your consideration: a messy room has an order to its habitant, writing should too.

Wednesday, 20 October 2010

Writing: Dreaming That First Draft

Dreaming up that first draft requires a lot of time, and the patience of a saint. We all have a real life outside of our imagination; if we could combine the two, there wouldn’t be a straight line in sight across the globe. To be a writer, having an over active imagination is an obvious must, but it is only one of the many traits a good scholar needs in his or her arsenal.

It becomes increasingly evident that good parents also make good writers, as long as the first need is met. Parenting is about having the patience of a saint, so is shaping and editing any piece of work, or even waiting for the idea. It’s been known for weeks or even months before that golden idea will hit. So always keep up with your real life because you never know when your fictional one will want to sweep you away.

How to bring your first draft into existence,

Poetry:

  • Build up a firm understanding of poetry in general
  • Experiment with poetical devices and forms
  • Imagery, symbolism and other theories, familiarise yourself with them!
  • never forget, the meter is almost more important than the words

Novel writing:

  • You can’t fluke it, you need to know what you’re doing
  • Set the scene, it must be as vivid for the reader as it is for you
  • Live in the world yourself, know about it and make all the notes you can
  • Keep your paragraphs in line, let the reader breathe.

I’ll end my little tips with my five writers golden rules (which have never let me down)

  1. No research is ever wasted, know your topic
  2. No such thing as bad criticism when it’s constructive
  3. Not everything has to have a deeper meaning, some like simplicity
  4. Patience, it always comes to you when you relax
  5. Even writers need down time, it means you can work all that bit harder.

With this very short, but hopefully helpful bundle of words, I hope to have guided or inspired someone out there to succeed at what I’ve devoted most of my life to already. Happy writing!

Friday, 15 October 2010

a swift update

It's been too long since my last update, and honestly I'm only posting from guilt of neglecting my duties. Illness as well as a complete wipe out of energy has left me withering, one would thing me an insect. The good news is that through two weeks of muddle fuddling and general cubuddling (yes my own coinage) I'm over half way through what's kept me away from here, the poetry book, ‘Chon-Ji’ - heaven and earth. It tells the tale of Chon and Ji, created by an unknown old man. Chon, the mother Earth creates Ji, her son.
She unfortunately can not curb her creative urges and this is when her creation fight back, corrupting her son until he leaves in search for immortality. With Greek inspiration I've striven to create a masterpiece, I hope I don't let myself, nor you readers down.