if you want to write

“I want to assure you with all earnestness, that no writing is a waste of time, – no creative work where the feelings, the imagination, the intelligence must work. With every sentence you write, you have learned something. It has done you good. It has stretched your understanding. I know that. Even if I knew for certain that I would never have anything published again, and would never make another cent from it, I would keep on writing.”

Brenda Ueland, If You Want To Write 

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this is true for me. it wasn’t always. 

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submitting poems is like pulling teeth (my own teeth). this one poet i like has been sending out submissions all summer and i wish i’d done the same, maybe i will do the same, next summer, or winter break maybe.  i don’t care about it like i used to; then again, when i was just starting out, i so badly needed the encouragement of poem acceptances. without them, i don’t think i would’ve gone for my mfa. well, or gotten the job i have now, so they have proven useful.

lately, if i send out my work, its usually to a magazine where i’ve read someone i like, and i haven’t sent out much to my dreamjournals this year. its hard to find time for both the writing of poems and the sending out of poems. 

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i’m learning that, personally, there are two things that i must do everyday: read scripture and write in my journal.

not for legalistic reasons, not for obligations, and i know it is not for everyone, but, for me, if i want to be a sane and balanced person rooted in God’s truth and believing who i am in HIM, then this is a must for me.

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i’ve written everyday for about twenty days now. out of the twenty days i think i’ve written six or seven poems, three of which are form poems, something so completely different for me.

i am loving my class; my teacher is smart and helpful, and my classmates are too, it makes me miss workshopping oh so much. so far we’ve studied the blues poem, villanelle, pantoum, and ghazal. the villanelle took me a few revisions to get it right, the ghazal was very difficult for me, actually the most difficult form i’ve tried, and the pantoum came pretty naturally.

i don’t know why i have been afraid of form all this time, it has been lovely and refreshing to study a new aspect of my craft. i think that i might even…maybe….start writing form poems outside of assignments….

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