Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Good ProfHacker Article on Writing

ProfHacker had a recent article The Writer as Athlete, and it was a good reminder to me that you don't have to do it *all* day, but you have to try to do it *every* day. Check out the part where it tells you that you have to get your gear - this is where I fall down most of the time. I sit in the corner of the couch , crouched over a laptop in a manner I know will end in back pain. Time to step it up a notch. Maybe getting my writing space refitted will encourage me to get back to the gym! (HAhahahahahaha)

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Well, Hello, 2010. Is that a Poem in your Pocket?

Ooh, 2010. What a lovely, round number. A number that pretty much gives permission - nay, orders us! - to set some goals, extend our limits, and make something count. I've listed my broad personal guidelines for 2010 here at my other blog, but I've got some specific writerly/artsy/crafty goals for this year too. For instance, I would like to:

1. Not terribly daunting, but: keeping a record of the books I read throughout the year and the movies I see. It's something I've wanted to keep track of for awhile and have simply been too lazy. I've already started this one, and the list is here at "Warmaiden's Diary." Not the juicy kind of diary, just the books & movies thing.

2. Work on a poetry project a month. Aside from writing my own poetry, I do think that studying it in a structured way helps me with my creativity, and helps prevent dry spells. Now that my MFA time is over (*sob*), I've decided to make a list of poetry projects to work on throughout the year, and the list came out to 11, whcih I figure is good, considering other projects and things that'll come up through the year. I'll be able to spend about a month on each - some are exercises, like writing in form and translation, and some are actually studies (like my plans for looking into lyric and elegiac poetry). The ones that made the list for this year are:

a) to do some translation work (esp Borges, Neruda, Lorca, Alfonsina Storni)
b) read (or re-read) some national epics - Shanameh, Cid, Daredevils of Sassoun
c) study Rumi & Sappho (does that strike you as a weird combination?)
d) study Deep image poets/poetry
e) study elegies
f) study lyric poetry
g) read some Japanese poets
h) read some Russian poets
i) do a study of Surrealist poetry
j) study meter (*gulp*)
k) work in forms (sestina, ghazals, repetition forms, sonnets, etc)

3. Seriously put the last polish on The Green of Breakable Things and Gonesongs. Both have gotten a pretty warm reception from individual journals and reviews for individual pieces (and I've been thrilled with how quickly the pieces from The Green are being accepted!) - time to find them a home for their full-length selves. Both are already entered in a handful of competitions, so we'll see on that front.

4. Learn some more crochet stitches. The single crochet means my blankets are ridonkulously heavy and take forever to finish. I'd like to get out more than a half-blanket per winter.

5. Dabble in some figure drawing and oil painting. I've always wanted to, and even collected supplies...and then was daunted by the thought of marring the blank page and canvas.

That's about it, but more than enough. This isn't a list of "musts," since that would just feel overwhelming, and lead to failure. This is a list of the things I would like to do, and that I want to make room and time in my life for. This is the list of things that I can look to whenever I feel like saying, "I'm bored."