08 October 2011

Another Endeavor

Oh yes, folks, the plates are a-spinnin!

The precarious balancing act continues: hosting a foreign exchange student, shuttling four kids to and fro, teaching part-time, managing house full-time...and to add the latest:


I mean, besides what I do here.  I heart blogging - I want you all to know that.  But, the kind of writing I'm doing these days is geared more towards an audience...as opposed to me going on about whatever topic I feel like (usually my husband and bread).

I've joined a website called FanStory.  I paid a year-long membership fee, and with that, I keep a portfolio, enter contests, review and provide feedback for other poets, authors, and novelists.  Reviewing pieces of writing allow me to collect member dollars, which I can then use to promote my own pieces of writing or enter certain contests.

In addition to the several contests a month, there are also creative writing prompts every day.  For example, here are the three on the block currently:

1. Disco Inferno Poem: For all of you disco fans... Write a poem of any form or style in appreciation of the disco era. Burn, baby, burn! 

2. Write a Naani poem. A Naani consists of 4 lines, the total lines consists of 20 to 25 syllables.

3. Oh, you are...are you?  Write a humorous free verse or free style poem about YOU, as though you are talking to yourself! You should start every stanza (except your last stanza) with "You are..." 

Short story contests often crop up as well.  Many opportunities exist for writers to practice their craft.  And, everything a writer posts here receives feedback...always appreciated by a genuine writer.

I haven't won any contests yet, but I've written more stuff than I have in the last six months.  I feel creative, I feel like I'm writing with a purpose, and it's bringing me enjoyment.  Here's a sample of the poetry I've written and submitted in the last week:

The Paradox

The world lay at my feet.
I could be anything that I want?
My dream job? When I grow up?
Now, that required some thought.

No factory job for me,
although it's what I knew.
My dad, you see, was a laborer,
a job I didn't want to do.

My elementary school years,
speedily came and went,
and I had but one desire.
Teaching would make me content!

Oh, but wait! In the fifth grade,
I dreamed one crazy dream.
I loved the stars, so - Astronomer?
But, I had not the brain, it seemed.

Then, in high school, I had the vision -
I'd edit books of history!
But that, too, lost its luster.
Another dream bereft of glory.

Soon I approached the career crossroads,
and my college graduation.
No further studies because of grades.
So, I wound up in education.

Here I am. I've worn many hats.
I've been a mom, a poet, a chef,
a philosopher, a professor.
I often wonder what's left.

I'd love to be a novelist,
or hero of the human race.
But there are days I'd settle for me,
content to maintain my own space. 

This haiku was submitted for a Humorous Haiku contest:

Seven-Year-Old Boys
my son, distracted
about his Pokemon cards,
leaves home without pants

This free verse piece was submitted for a "Faith" poetry contest:

Perpetual Cycle

This time of year
finds me feeling
somewhat pulled apart,
like an old ragdoll -
weary and weathered,
undone at the seams.

To quell those
naggling disquiets,
I find Autumn.

Her answers come,
scrawled along the
veins of single leaves.
They flutter to Earth
in a timeless dance,
hoping to join the others.

And I am reminded - that which
blooms forth from the Earth
eventually returns to it.
Including me.

Autumn's arms encircle me,
those towering elms and oaks.
Silent, steadfast, stout.

But - every minute brings change:
whistling wind shifts a leaf,
disturbs an elderly branch,
and lays the bark bare.

I, too, never stop changing.
Yet I endure as well.

The gallant prairie tallgrass,
now in its tattered brown raiment
after a summer of verdant green robes,
is but one sign of the imminent sleep
before the wakening joy of Spring.

And I understand -
all these living things
turn their hopeful faces
to the life-giving sun
and lift their arms
towards the light.
I am no different.

Although the Earth dies
for a time,
how else can she prepare
for new life?

So, I find hope in
Earth's endless death
and rebirth,
knowing that life
has no other mystery.

And this piece was submitted in a "Witty Epitaph" contest:

Here lies the invaluable Mister Comma.
Pause, for a moment of silence –
this world will, never be the same!
He suffered misuse, and abuse;
but loved eating dogs and playing, games.

I've been having fun, as you can see.  But, I'm also rediscovering my long-lost voice.  In addition to the sundry poetry contests I'm entering, I'm also editing and submitting my novel, as well as working on some short story pieces.

As author Ernest Hemingway says, "There is nothing to writing.  All you do is sit down at a typewriter (or laptop) and bleed."  Truly.

1 comment:

  1. That's one nice thing about the web - you can find what rings your bell.