We had another Live Lit event last week. The theme was “Once upon a word” and, once again, the decision about what to read proved problematic.
Naturally, given the theme, my mind turned to stories and fairy tales; but fiction isn’t my strong suit and I don’t usually write what I would call narrative poetry.
It’s just occurred to me now that I could have told the story about little Johnny in class when the teacher is explaining the four elements of a good story:
Continue reading “decisions, decisions, decisions…”
I don’t know what the ideal length is for a blog post, but some weekends I seem to spend a heck of a long time writing.
Today, though, I’m going to settle for posting this screen shot, taken from a local pub website. There’s definitely something about those last two words that makes me wonder what they put in the biscuits.
I’ve just published a new creative writing course on the Udemy platform: Inspirations for Creative Writing provides a range of practical activities, ideas and prompts for poets and other writers. The course has around 90 minutes of video classes, with a range of activities and examples to download. It’s the fifth course I’ve published on the site and I’m proud that The Essential Poet’s Toolbox for Readers & Writers, which has been online for a couple of years, is a bestseller.
One of the things that the Udemy platform does for instructors is provide automatic captioning for the videos; but although this is a useful service, it isn’t by any means a perfect system.
Continue reading “the Apostle Annetta”
This weekend has been far too hot and far too busy, which is my excuse for not posting on the blog yesterday and almost failing to post today.
I’ve spent far too long on my feet in the sunshine and am exhausted. But I resisted the temptation to jump in the river and cool off, however green and cool and tempting it looked.
Continue reading “parked”
I was wondering why I seem to find so little to post about recently. After all, there’s no less news than there used to be. If anything, there’s probably more than ever. Perhaps that’s the problem: there is just too much information around for me to process it effectively and I think I feel less informed than ever.
Which may explain why I have fallen back on posting photographs.
Continue reading “summer blues”
They say that language shapes our view of the world: if we use sexist and bigoted language, it is difficult to avoid becoming sexist bigots and if we don’t have the words for a concept, we find it hard to understand.
Certainly my own experience of learning a second language revealed a different personality: I was free to say things I could never have said in my native English because the words and the grammar permitted it and because I came fresh to the new language with the opinions and ideas of an adult but with no personal attachment or aversion to the words.
Continue reading “the words we use”
Years ago, I belonged to a mixed-genre writing group. I was one of the few members who primarily wrote poetry, so I was delighted when another poet – Don, an American university professor – settled in the city for a few months and started to attend meetings with his wife. (I can’t remember what she wrote; it may have been academic writing rather than creative.)
I’ve often thought that poets get short-changed at writing groups as they are expected to give feedback on all the other members’ work in a range of genres, but frequently get no useful comments about their poems.
Continue reading “a little background”