Some things can’t be said in words,
not even in your thoughts,
it simply can’t be expressed that way.
This is not part of Inside a Writer’s Head, but it is the same flavor as the collection. If you like this, be sure to join the collection giveaway. It’s totally free to enter, you just have to interact with posts on social media.
It’s been a while
since I sat and wrote,
I got distracted
By all I’d spoke
and all else I was
I neglected this writing
in favor of
my other offered flavors,
And projects more complete.
Not that it was wrong,
but if my art were
my child, I’d be in deep trouble.
I’m lucky my projects
are not literally my children,
for I have too many
to properly care
For them all.
This was the November 2018 Giveaway. It is now over. Abigail Hawley won the ebook, Brian Nuckols won the preview with bonus content. All other entrants got a discount code for the sale page.
I’m going to giveaway free e-copies of Inside a Writer’s Head. This post will likely be edited as I refine the nature of the giveaway.
On November 28th I’m going to use a random number generator to determine who will receive free e-copies of Inside a Writer’s Head in the form of an epub or pdf. There will be one winner per 30 entrants. I will also select one winner out of every 15 entrants to receive a preview of Inside a Writer’s Head containing four poems in the collection and poems that didn’t make the final cut as a pdf.
Ways to enter:
Like this blog post you’re on right now, follow my blog via email or WordPress account, and share this post on Facebook or Twitter. Send me the link to your post in the comments or firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject line Giveaway Entry.
For each of your entries, you will receive a message confirming your entry along with your entry number. These numbers are in the order in which I saw the entry and added it to my list of who entered where. Your confirmation is for your sake and mine to help me keep track of who has already entered.
I may add more ways to enter later on if this gets more popular or I find a better way to track entries.
As I’m sure you know, I’m hard at work on my upcoming debut poetry collection Inside a Writer’s Head. Since initally deciding to make this collection and amassing all the poems into one Google doc, I’ve learned a few things.
1. Don’t pick categories first.
This might be more relevant to collections that are already topic-specific. Inside a Writer’s Head is a collection of poems written about writing, so they have that theme in common.
I made the mistake of grouping poems together by topics when I was putting them into the Google doc. I had no idea how I wanted the poems arranged when I did this. I didn’t know which poem would open the collection, which would close it. I created buckets without knowing if I’d use them or how many poems would be in each bucket.
This made it harder for me to move forward because the poems were already “organized,” so I wasn’t sure how to “reorganize” them to make a cohesive collection.
2. Do play around with the order.
Move the poems around. Try different poems at the start of the collection, at the end. See what goes together and what you don’t like. What that means will depend on your purposes.
I have a few poems I paired together to create a humorous effect, or because they had a similar implication in some of the lines, or because they gave some clarification to each other.
I’m still not done doing this. I’m much happier with this draft over the previous one, though.
3. Don’t be afraid to cut, combine, or otherwise change the poems in the collection.
I had three poems about my novel-in-progress. They didn’t fit the collection. They would’ve needed some explanation and context and I didn’t want to interrupt the collection and the flow of the poems in order to add that. So I cut them. I didn’t want to, not really, but I did it anyway to improve cohesivity and order.
I had two poems that were very similar thematically, such that they were almost two versions of the same poem. So I made them one poem. A couple other poems needed lines cut or some other changes to be made.
You want the poems to individually be the best they can be. You want the collection as a whole piece to be the best it can be. For that to happen, you will have to make changes and edits. Also, just because you cut lines or a whole poem doesn’t mean you can’t still use it or that it has no merit. But you have to recognize when it doesn’t fit in the collection or the poem.
4. Do make the collection what and how you like it.
This is your piece of art, own it. If you’re not happy with it, it won’t matter how happy everyone else is. Everyone else could think it the best collection in the world, but that won’t make you happy with it.
Take control over your creative product, make it what you want, make it how you want. It’s in your name, you need to own it.
(That’s actually one of my reasons for self-publishing.)
I’ve only just finished a second draft. I’m not done crafting the collection, reordering the poems, etc. These are four things I’ve found to be important over the last few days when I moved from draft one to draft two.
For anyone looking to make your own poetry collection, I hope this helps.
If you have any questions about organizing your manuscript, Inside a Writer’s Head, or advice for me, put it in the comments! I’d love to discuss this with you.
All the poems I have here were written in August in previous years. Each is the first poem I wrote that August.
31 August 2013
The midnight atmosphere,
Hardly any light.
The expected brightness
being processed instantaneously.
shocked by the sudden onslaught.
Images appearing magically,
trying to comprehend the attack.
Then, in surprise, it darkens again,
a sense of mystery
an overpowering feeling
of being full.
A story having been told
before the attendence,
Come to be amazed by
Today’s wonderous, fantastic, dreamlike
27 August 2014
It is often easy
for me to
that I am
Someone, Something, else…
Then I look
in the Mirror…
And it all comes back to me…
9 August 2015
I wonder, why can’t I be stronger,
why can’t it take longer for
tears to overtake me,
to drown me,
to pull me away from control over myself?
6 August 2016
Up, down, all around
these mem’ries swirl
Soon I’ll relive
a few of them
with new friends that
I recently finished gathering together a lot of my poems to make a collection. To begin with I tried to put them in some categories based loosely on topic. Now, though, I need to go through and reorganize them.
Which poem should open the collection? Which should close it? How should they be arranged in between? Should they be in categories or just one after the other more randomly?
I have to answer these questions just about organizing the collection. Not to mention I have to consider if I’ll have notes about the poems, if I’ll include the date I wrote the poem on, if there will be illustrations in the book. Do I want just one poem for every two pages, or one for each page?
It was easier to write the poems to begin with than to figure out how I want to present them together!
All the poems I have here were written in July in previous years. Each is the first poem I wrote that July. I had wanted to share poems written on July 3 specifically but there were none.
12 July 2015
The lack of inspiration that has brought me here today,
is reeling and pealing away my skin.
The time it has taken to come so far,
for half a month to pass,
seems far longer than what it was,
And yet too short for it to have been another year.
Nothing is making sense as it swirls through my brain
in a jumbled, hectic mess.
As my readers, you may have noticed, but if not
do not be alarmed,
I’m still writing, still plotting, still mentally involved.
Most of my best poetry
never reaches the paper,
A shame, really,
15 July 2016
I know not who I am
But who I make myself to be.
I know not where I hail,
‘Cept I lived among the sea.
I stay the same, but not in how they treat me,
My form shifts, and that is how they greet me.
Even thought I have not changed at all,
They do not realize ,and that will be their fall.
18 July 2017
I wondered what she thought
as my life was on display.
Would it be for naught,
My suicide that day?
I longed for her to hear me,
so I joined her on that side.
Now that she is near me,
WIll my time, she bide?
The colors of this world we’re in
Were painted on for show,
But can you hear me o’er the din,
as the mem’ries around us flow?