Thursday, June 21, 2018
Welcome to Poetry Friday. Please check out this week's entire round up at Michelle Kogan's blog.
I recently turned in the final book in a contracted 4-book wfh series. I enjoyed the subject matter, the research, and the writing, but I only had 5 weeks to complete the project. I was in full-on nonfiction writing mode with little time for anything else. My two writing loves are nonfiction and poetry, but it's very difficult for me to do both at the same time and then to dive back into one or the other after a break. With this project behind me, I was really looking forward to writing some new poetry, but alas, when I sat down to write, it all just seemed like garbage. But that's okay. I let myself write the garbage. With time and work, some of that garbage might turn into something special.
The other thing I did to get back into the poetry swing of things was to revisit some of my favorite poetry writing resources.
1. This first one is a newer resource for me. Several weeks ago I won a copy of JoAnn Early Macken's Write A Poem Step by Step. From the basics of rhythm, meter, and rhyme to poetry forms to coming up with ideas and using exciting language and imagery, this book covers it all. She also provides chapters with writing exercises, revision techniques, and guidance on getting your work published.
2. An older favorite is Poem Crazy by Susan G. Wooldridge. If you've ever read Anne Lamott's Bird by Bird, in my opinion, this would be the poetry equivalent. It provides equal parts inspiration and technique.
3. Some of my favorite "tool" books to use when writing are Flip Dictionary by Barbara Ann Kipfer, Ph.D. (the best book to help you find the best word) and Merriam Webster's Rhyming Dictionary.
4. Last but not least, I read lots of great poetry. Thank goodness for libraries and Poetry Friday :) This practice is more inspiring and more of an education than anything else.
How do you get yourself out of a writing rut?