On Fear, September Deadlines, & Why I Write Poetry

“What I advise you to do is, not to be unhappy before the crisis comes; since it may be that the dangers before which you paled as if they were threatening you, will never come upon you; they certainly have not yet come.”Seneca, “On Groundless Fears”

Check out this list of contests with September deadlines compiled by The Masters Review.

Find out why I write poetry.

 

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On Big Prizes for a Single Poem, “Summer Unplugged,” & the Sun

Check out these poetry contests with a deadline of August, 31. 

Free Photo Contest, deadline August, 31. Hurry.

“And then, of course, the biggest crime of all was that she had come here only five years ago from Earth, and she remembered the sun and the way the sun was and the sky was when she was four in Ohio. And they, they had been on Venus all their lives, and they had been only two years old when last the sun came out and had long since forgotten the color and heat of it and the way it really was.
But Margot remembered.”

— Ray Bradbury, “All Summer in a Day”

On Lucrative Poetry, San Antonio’s 300th Birthday, & “The temptation towards resolution”

Want to start earning money writing poetry? Check out these tips from Erika Dreifus.

A cool poetry contest to honor San Antonio’s Tricentennial. Don’t miss.

“The temptation towards resolution, towards wrapping up the package, seems to me a terrible trap. Why not be more honest with the moment? The most authentic endings are the ones which are already revolving towards another beginning. That’s genius. Somebody told me once that fugue means to flee, so that Bach’s melody lines are like he’s running away.”The Art of Theater No. 12 with Sam Shepard (1943–2017)

“Don’t panic…”

“Don’t panic, because everything is probably all right, and if it’s not, panicking will make it worse.”

— From “The One Memory of Flora Banks” by Emily Barr

An exhilarating read, equally enjoyed by both my sixteen-year-old daughter and my–going on forty five–self.

“I do not miss childhood…”

“I do not miss childhood, but I miss the way I took pleasure in small things, even as greater things crumbled. I could not control the world I was in, could not walk away from things or people or moments that hurt, but I took joy in the things that made me happy.”

― Neil Gaiman, The Ocean at the End of the Lane

“write from your own life”

“…make sure that there are aspects of your book that you know to the bones. Maybe there is a character inspired by your own mother. Or maybe you are a devoted baker, and your heroine is a pastry chef. It can be a place, an occupation, a way of life.

The point is this: Knowing something profoundly and deeply will free you to write about it in an engaging and authentic way, and in an original voice. Aspiring authors sometimes fear sharing the premise of their work in progress, on the grounds that somebody might “steal their idea.” I don’t think anybody should worry about this. The fact is, if you write from your own life, only you can write your book.”

—  Michele Campbell

“…the gulf that exists between us…”

“…the gulf that exists between us as people is that when we look at each other we might see faces, skin color, gender, race, or attitudes, but we don’t see, we can’t see, the stories. And once we hear each other’s stories we realize that the things we see as dividing us are, all too often, illusions, falsehoods: that the walls between us are in truth no thicker than scenery.”

–Neil Gaiman

“Tho’ much is taken…”

“Tho’ much is taken, much abides; and tho’
We are not now that strength which in old days
Moved earth and heaven; that which we are, we are;
One equal temper of heroic hearts,
Made weak by time and fate, but strong in will
To strive, to seek, to find, and not to yield.”

— From “Ulysses” by Alfred, Lord Tennyson (1809–1892)