Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Go For It: Just Write

Don't push off what you can get done today. Write, write, write. Sometimes we hold off on things as we're not sure how we want to proceed next.

I've had days where I really want to write something, but I can't seem to put the pen to paper and just do it. That's the problem. Not making ourselves write. It's that hesitation which causes us to dilly dally.

That's when I knit. Yesterday seemed to be a knitting day. I think it was partly to blame on the weather. I hate the heat and humidity. I didn't want to do a whole lot besides running errands. I needed groceries and a trip to the store is always fun.

I sat outside my building yesterday and it was actually cooler outside than in my fourth floor apartment. Heat rises. I sat out there with a container of fresh strawberries and blueberries. Not that I (being diabetic) should be eating those, but they're the good sugar. And I knitted a strap to a water bottle holder. I've been making those lately.

I knew I had to type my hand written chapters into the book, Loving Her Until Infinity (erotica version), but I didn't feel like it. Didn't feel like typing in my hot apartment. Yet.

Other days, I can write or type for hours and get a lot done. I like when I can do that. Like this last week, was for the majority, spent writing and typing up poems. Over the last few weeks, I've published two poetry books. Flowers for Mom and other poems and Here's to You, Sylvia Plath and other poems. I was on a role and now I'm at a loss for words of poetry.

I've got two new poems to add to a new book, but I'm not thrilled with one of them. Time to pull out my paper word pieces from one of the writer's toolboxes. This one is an Edward Cullen pouch. About three years ago, when I was dating a different guy (who liked to write poetry), I was into creating words on paper. I had the magnetic words too, but wanted to make my own in cursive writing.

The boyfriend turned out to be an alcoholic and I couldn't handle that, so we broke up after a month of dating. Plus, he was homeless and wanted to move right in.

I'm dating a nice guy now. He was a widower who lives in my building. A really nice guy.

I ended up later on, typing up the chapters I had written. Pushed the novel to 108 pages. It's getting good. I think today, I want to write more. It's a matter of going for it and doing it without thinking it's going to be a floppy mess of words. Don't look at your writing with criticism yet. Save that for the editing.

Just write. If you don't think you have the time, find the time. Even if you feel you've been drained of your energy, worked a long day and don't feel motivated. Surprise yourself. You may be able to get in a good hours worth of writing to progress things along.

If you allow yourself an hour or more a day, you would be surprised how it will add up if you keep at it.

Lately, I like my boyfriend and I get up early, so it seems I have extra hours in a day to get things done. Although, at the same rate, if I've gotten up at 5 am, I'm often tired by 9 pm. I also like staying up to 11 pm. One time, around the holidays, my boyfriend stayed up all night and ended up he was up for about 48 hours. I don't see how he could do it. He was on vacation for one thing.

I need my beauty sleep.

Monday night, my train back home after seeing the kids, was delayed until 10:30 pm. I ended up pulling out a book from the library book sale. I read half of it and finished it yesterday morning. Julie and Romeo Get Lucky, by Jeanne Ray. What an awesome book! There were a few spots I came close to laughing in the train station. The part about Romeo's mother cracked me up. And the 8 year old gambler had me laughing.

I hadn't read a book in a bit and it was good to get back to reading. Need to build up the writer's toolbox. Not that I can remember all the phrases I liked in the book, but I'm sure a few will jump out at me sometime. She describes Audrey Hepburn's neck like a willow branch at one point. I liked that metaphor.

I've got to sew up a few of my water bottle holders I finished and list one or two on Etsy.

I was floored when I sold two poetry books on Amazon in the space of two days. That was cool. Now I'm patiently waiting again.

Someone bought Flowers for Mom and other poems. I finally got another book review. Someone gave me a review for that.

Well, I should go if I'm going to go for it and write, write, write. The day is young and seems cooler. Maybe that should motivate me.

Jennifer Jo Fay

Copyrighted June 2017

There's my water bottle holder. This was last week at the farmer's market. I didn't sell anything. It's been three weeks since I sold anything. I think the people mostly want the food vendors items. The grapes were good.

This is the photo I used for the cover for the newest poetry book. I picked a picture of Sylvia Plath to draw from so it can go with the first poem in the book. The butterflies were really fun to make. I should make more of those. My favorite is the green one.  I've got to figure out Amazon's cover creator a little better. Sometimes my whole photo doesn't get in, except for one of the ones I can choose from.

Thursday, June 8, 2017

What's in Your Writer's Toolbox?

I do believe every writer should have a writer's toolbox of some sort. What are writer's without one?

I think a large part of our writer's toolbox comes from reading the works of other writers. Every time we sit down and read a book from start to finish, we are building our toolbox. It doesn't mean we remember everything we've read, but we store information in our brains for when we go to write our own stuff.

Are you the type of writer who likes to highlight or underline words or phrases in the books you read? Some people do this. My book by Sylvia Plath arrived in the mail yesterday. Johnny Panic and the Bible of Dreams. When I opened it up, I noticed someone had written inside on the first page.

I will never let you go unread. What a terrible fate that would be. This was one.

"The greatest enemy to creativity is self-doubt." Sylvia Plath.

There were also other writings inside by someone. And when I opened to one page where she had written about a storm, there were several small sticky note cut outs about what the person thought of the essay.

I am awed by Sylvia Plath's descriptions in the first two stories I have read so far. Mothers. And Ocean 1212-W I really liked reading this one. The descriptions are so vivid in my mind and I'm finding her work fascinating.

I've ordered The Bell Jar once again. I gave it away the first time as I couldn't bring myself to read it. I'm going to make myself read it. Last week, I wrote a poem based on Sylvia Plath. It ended up being four pages long and was the longest poem I have written. It's going to be the first poem in my newest poetry book I am working on.

There should be lots of other things in your writer's toolbox. I started creating one this last week. On an excursion to Family Dollar with my boyfriend, I discovered a cool mason jar just for this idea. I got it home and started writing ideas on a steno pad and began rolling them up and tossing them in the jar.

Note: When cutting my writing prompts off the paper, I cut towards me. A bad habit that stuck with me since early childhood. Everyone thinks it is funny.

I brought the jar to the library on the night I visited with my kids. Mollyanne and Julia had fun reading some of them.

Write anything that comes to mind and toss it in a jar, a box or anything else you want to put them in.

I also have one for poetry that is all kinds of words cut up on small art paper. Then, I can pull out seven or eight words and create a poem from it.

Some people like those magnetic words. I have that and use it once in a while.

Come back to your writer's box any time you want. Maybe you have a day when writer's block has set in. Go to the toolbox, fish out an idea and start writing.

Keep reading and building your toolbox so you have more to work with.  Whenever you come across a word you don't know, look it up.

A writer's toolbox should also possess a thesaurus and a dictionary. Reference books are great. Also, build your collection of books on writing. It's all essential to being a writer.

Now write.

Jennifer Jo Fay

Copyrighted June 2017