Freedom From The Mundane - A Writer's Blog

Monday, September 12, 2005

Flexibilty and Determination: That's The Key

The urge to write and create is unbearable at the moment. Meeting Rankin has brought my desire to a seething head so much so, that all my projects, current and planned, are screaming at me within my head. They're all fighting with each other like a bunch of school kids clamouring for the last remaining Mars Bar in the tuck-shop.

I have to settle myself down, get straightened out and organised in my mind. It's probably just as well my discussion with Gail happened when it did, because if it hadn't it might not be so easy to see how to go about it.

I worked out a timetable. It's totally flexible and just a guide but it shows tangible quantities of hours spent on each area of work.

Click here to view the timetable

I've mentioned before that I'm a member of a poetry group. I was asked to join a while ago and once I settled in I found it a very useful place to post the occasional poem but more importantly, learn from the others for there are some far more experienced poets there than the likes of me.

Lately though, I've been getting disillusioned with it. It is understood that poetry is subjective and personal and that interpretation of a poem is open to different people at many levels and in all ways.

But I am becoming more of the opinion that poetry is actually a secret language and that one must learn these meanings before they can write poetry that will be understood by the elite.

Bollocks to that. I write poetry to make me feel good and to practice a form of expression that I enjoy. Why should I conform to the elitist view just to fit in? I'll be honest and say a lot of the poems I read on the forum make no sense to me whatsoever. The metaphors, rules and structures used mean nothing to me, yet are obvious to most of the others. They just don't make sense and I find it harder each day to contribute to the discussions.

I am not thinking of giving up poetry, but I am thinking of giving up on the forum, because although many of the people are open to reading lots of challenging poetry, unless it sits within their understanding it seems to get belittled.

That said, there are several people in the group who are delightful and read my poems for what they are. They criticise them fairly and praise where they feel it's applicable. These people know who they are (I hope!) so I wouldn't want them offended by this post, but I felt I had to express my feelings.

But the long and short of it is, I am beginning to think the forum is not for me. It is running down my confidence at a time when I am working on a chapbook of poetry. I don't need the negativity around me when the project needs all my positive energy poured into it.

The search for a photographer to do the front and back covers of the fringe book has gone external. Having tried all the photographers I know - my mate Chris - I decided that my best chance was to approach a local University and post some ads on local online message boards. I need someone with talent, motivation and who is willing to work for a credit on the book since I can't afford to pay them.

First stop was here: I used this site before when I was looking for a suitable cover for Hunting Jack. Then I found Gumtree; a local free classified website. Click here to view my advert

When I got home I painted. Yes, I know it's not on my timetable but I've swapped Monday and Tuesday around this week. See? Flexibility!

I painted the roof and glossed the skirting and window frames. The skirting is the worse because I have to lie on the hardwood floor and work my way round the edges of the room. It's not pleasant and my arms and knees suffer for it. I'll recoat them all again on Thursday night and that should be them. Then it will be onto the walls, which are going to be a shade of inspiring light blue. A carpet will go down and then the furniture assembled, shelving put up and then the small things to make it perfect.

After a shower I sat down at the laptop and edited the 28 poems I wrote last night as I typed them out. Some are better than I gave them credit for - in my eyes - and I now have a total of 39 for the book. I will put every single one of these poems through the editing and critical mill so they are pass every test before I publish them. There's also still a couple of areas I want to write about and then that will be it. I'm aiming for about 50-55 poems in total as the book will be about 60 pages in length.
Colin 8:25 am


You painted the roof? You've lost the plot laddie. I myself created my first artwork - acrylic on canvas. It will have pride of place in our sitting room.

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