Wednesday, June 8, 2011

TIC TOCC and some introspection

This week for TIC TOCC, Kat gave us a different sort of prompt than the ones we'd had before.  Actually, I think each week has been different and each week has led me to experiment in different ways.  This week was all about taking something old and making it new.  Transforming one thing into another.

Kat's piece recycled a watercolor that she wasn't happy with and some other things that relate to her medical condition.  I am always so inspired by her attitude and by the art that she's creating.  If you haven't visited her blog, do it!  She's an amazing woman and has been a great friend in my bloggy endeavor.

For my piece I knew right away what I wanted to do.  I tore one page out of a tea catalog and one page out of a seed catalog and I went to work cutting out words.  I cut them until I had a good pile and then I set to work arranging them to find some sort of meaning.  It's been very hot here and it's very windy.  Because we have no air conditioning we've had the windows open wide.  Can you see where this is going?  My words blew off the page.  I found a more sheltered spot and tried again.  After I'd arranged it into some sort of poem, I took a page of watercolor paper and painted a light background, just faint clouds of color.  Today I glued my poem onto the background, finding that a few words had blown away.  A couple, I never did find, so I reworked the poem a bit and quickly glued it down.


*a bit hard to read like this; see below for full text


I really had fun with this.  It reminded me of playing with magnetic poetry.  I'm not very confident when it comes to poetry.  Although I took part in the Small Stones challenge back in January, I didn't share any of the poems I wrote on my blog.  I don't think I've ever shared the fact that my undergraduate degree is in creative writing (focusing on short stories) and that I got half-way through a masters in creative writing with a free ride scholarship, getting all As and winning awards and then dropped out.  That maybe sounds bad, but I did it for the right reasons at the time.  I wasn't interested in the degree.  All I wanted to do was get back to my writing.  And all that going to school (while working two jobs) was doing was stressing me out.  I was barely writing.  Since then I have gone through periods where I haven't written much at all and times when I have done a fair amount of writing.  I know I mentioned that a friend of mine published a couple of my stories in his book, but those are the only published works I have.  There is one simple reason for that.  I have not done anything to try to get my stories published.  I don't have piles of rejection letters.  I don't even have one rejection letter.

That same friend of mine who published my stories wrote the following in an email to me the other day: "I am seriously starting to work on a couple of writing projects with the aim of getting something published. I need to try it. Otherwise all this time of unemployment will have nothing to show for itself. Plus, if I am not doing it today when will I?"  That got me thinking.  I'm not working right now, either.  There's work on the farm, but it's not like working a full-time job.  I've been focusing on crafting and doing art, stocking my Etsy shop and learning to paint.  I do not feel like I've been wasting my time.  I've written a couple short stories and now, thanks to Kat, I've been stretching my writing muscles with her weekly challenges.  I spent the month of January writing poetry and I wrote a bit since then, too.  I'm not always good at writing in my journal, but I do have this blog.  Even so, like my friend, I'm asking myself, if I'm not writing now, if I'm not seriously writing now, when will I?  Earlier this week I sat down with one of my boxes of writing.  I have two bankers boxes filled with folders of writing.  Some finished.  Some unfinished.  Reading through some of that was like truly seeing myself again.  And it made me happy.

I guess I'm writing all of this because I feel like I shouldn't be keeping that part of myself in the shadows anymore.  I need to be writing.  I need to be trying to get some of my stories published.  I am not good at holding myself accountable.  I am very good at avoiding things that I don't want to do or that I am scared to do.  Which is funny because I am also good at leaping into situations unprepared and foolishly fearless.  It's been scary to share my art on my blog, but everyone has been so kind and supportive that it's also been easy to share my art on my blog.  My writing is so entwined with who I am, who I really am, that I haven't been as willing to share it.  So here I am, posting a poem, posting some secrets about myself and pledging, publicly to make an effort to get some stories published.  That aim has been a goal (an ignored goal) each year in my new year's resolutions.  Time for that to change.



*
after full dark
you wither
almost without oxygen
trying in Flowery Broken French
to charm a Kiss
fine
less subtle
when only slightly heart-shaped
tantalizing
But
it Does not light pretty flames
or even
warm delicate flowers
but
you tell me
stop
Breathe
and
give in to new fragrant danger
slow
silkysweet magic
floating higher than air

9 comments:

  1. Dearest sweet anne, this is so inspiring and i adore that piece you created. Just beautiful. Thanks so much for sharing your email from your friend with us. And thanks so much for sharing your beautiful writting with us. They are all so inspiring!
    Thanks so much for your sweet words on my new iCase series. I want to create a piece of manly iCase too and i hope it doesn't turn out overly cute. :) I hope you share with me when you create that special iCase for your husband. :)
    Have a lovely merry happy day sweet sweet friend and love to you!

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  2. s-o-o-o-o-o beautiful, Anne.
    I've told you before that I loved your writing. It's up to you to decide that you want to make it a priority. I think you have a real gift.

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  3. I used to follow "I Should Be Writing" (http://isbw.murlafferty.com/) a few years back. It's a podcast about exactly what you're talking about (writing, storytelling, staying motivated, being courageous in the face of rejection letters, how to get published, what not to do when trying to get published, interviews with published authors, etc.). Since then, she actually has gotten published, so she knows a thing or two. Might be worth a look.

    -- Toxic Frosting

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  4. Such an amazing moving post I don't know where to start my comment... First WOW - the poem you've created is wonderful - it is full of passion and beauty; really special. I've created poetry this way and have found it great fun and sometimes its led to real heartfelt writing. There's something wonderful about mixing writing with art - the tactile and creative nature of cutting, sticking and painting seems to feed the writing mind.
    Secondly, thank you so much for the super kind words and mention. You've no idea how much it means to me to know that you've gained something positive. Thanks for the encouragement, your blogging friendship and inspiration.

    Thirdly (and there is no order, just trying to organise my thoughts.lol.) I so understand what you've said about your writing. So many of your problems/confusions/fears are similar to ones I've experienced. I have written whole books but haven't sent any to publishers/agents yet. I've had small bits published here and there but have sent off virtually nothing for publication. But I still write and for me I feel I'm focusing on other things for a reason at the moment. Of late I've been led away from the novel writing but am trying to trust that it is part of my journey and learning. It seems that for you the time has come to increase the time and importance you allocate to your writing. My advice is to follow your intuition and take it day by day. If you feel moved to write and send things for publication then go for it. You certainly have the talent. I look forward to following your journey!

    Hugs
    Kat Xx

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  5. It´s amazing the amount of beuty you could get out of such a restricted work frame of given words. The images are so delicate and subtle with a great softness and yet so passionate.

    I´ve been reading your blog for while and I can say you´ve been doing a HUGE amount of work!!! Even if it doesn´t have the structure (or the pay) of a full time job you´ve certainly put a lot of thought and physical effort into the farm.

    I´ve already added your blog to The Artist´s Way list. We´ll be reading the Introduction during June so we can start adding the tools (like morning pages and dates) at our own pace and then start reading Chapter 1 on July 1st (or July 3rd if you are working Sunday to Sunday)

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  6. A very imaginative way to create a poem Anne. With regards to your writing, do try and get your stories published. Life is too short to put things on hold. Go for it!!!

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  7. I *love* this post. I love your writing and how open and honest you are with yourself and with people around you (and I also love the poetry with the watercolor background....beautiful, you should frame it!)
    ~Kerry @ ThisTinder (sorry I had to post under anony for some reason..)

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  8. Thank you all so much. I'm always a little uncomfortable sharing my thoughts like that and I really appreciate the kind and thoughtful comments you've left. I want to say more, but what more can I say than thank you?

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  9. Oh Anne! Wow! This poem is truly amazing. Such beauty in it. I do hope you pursue whatever it is that brings you happiness. You have such amazing gifts in writing AND in your art. You've brought me great happiness with both. I look forward to watching your progress! Big Hug to you!

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