For more art by me, please take a look at my Deviant Art gallery.
For more art by me, please take a look at my Deviant Art gallery.
I am tentatively venturing into the world of acrostic poetry. Something I don’t have much confidence for, but I would like to explore it a bit more.
For those who are not in the know, acrostic poetry takes a form that is like this;
Elizabeth it is in vain you say
“Love not”—thou sayest it in so sweet a way:
In vain those words from thee or L. E. L.
Zantippe’s talents had enforced so well:
Ah! if that language from thy heart arise,
Breathe it less gently forth—and veil thine eyes.
Endymion, recollect, when Luna tried
To cure his love—was cured of all beside—
His folly—pride—and passion—for he died.
As you can see a poetic line (I am not very good with jargon) starts with the first letter of a word in each sentence. This was written by Edgar Allan Poe and it is called ELIZABETH.
It should flow well into each other, each line and remain within the subject matter which is the word you are working from.
There are many poetry competitions in the UK which specialise on only acrostic entries and most of those competitions offer prizes of £150 for the win – I have never taken the plunge to enter any creative writing competitions, but I am hoping to change this someday.
You will see a new category on my blog soon purely for acrostic poetry.
I also wanted to mention today in this post that I am no longer doing the Sunday word counts as I find it sometimes demoralising – especially when I don’t reach my 10k goal, for some reason or another making my failure public seem all the more worse.
I apologise for not posting my word prompts before noon, I got a little too excited today with a delivery I had of a new musical instrument I am attempting to play – something I can hear on bad days and doesn’t require difficult fingering for my left hand – a recorder.
I have always been musically inclined, since a small child I would visit my grandmother and play on her piano in her dining room whilst she prepared lunch, we often visited her on Sundays, usually just my dad and I. I would play all the notes and eventually started to learn some tunes by ear. I never learned to read music even now I have never learned to read and understand music fully or professionally or with professional help.
The piano was my first attempt at music, always perfect righthandedly and terrible with my left hand due to my disability. When I was around seven years old my dad talked mum into buying me a keyboard so I can practise at home whenever I liked and ever since my house has never been without a keyboard in it. I have never personally owned a piano and I never learned to use a pianos foot pedals or learn the proper terminologies for anything regarding music, except for one word I learned listening to classic FM radio as a teenager = Adagio means to play slowly.
I was then upgraded to a more professional style keyboard aged seventeen as a birthday present, this had digitisation to it (I think that’s what people call it), where I could hook up the keyboard to the internet and download new songs to learn, because this particular keyboard had a function where it taught you how to place your hands and how to keep time. When I was about nineteen my brother gave me an old copy of Cubase that a friend of his owned and I learned I could compose music by using this, without ever knowing how to actually write the music. I had saved the music I composed onto an MP3 floppy disk and I still have it to this day and the keyboard too actually! Unfortunately that Cubase I had is years out of date and I have never been able to finance a replacement, so until I can replace Cubase, my composing days are over!
Pianos and keyboards were never my only dip into the music world; I have in fact learned to play a paper and comb, some notes on a harmonica, belly dancing cymbals, some tunes on my dad’s bugle, an xylophone at a day centre for children when I was around thirteen, some notes on a guitar but again my left hand failed me and I never did get around to replacing my guitar with a left handed version, I also played quite well an accordion, but my parents sold it at a car boot sale once, they claimed they were having a hard time and I never did get it back, I was doing better on that than the keyboard and I had rather of given up the keyboard instead. The fact I did better with an accordion stands to reason as it was a right handed instrument and the fingers I needed on my left hand could do the job properly.
I haven’t played music for nearly six years because I was ill, but also because the house got a little too crowded and messy and I couldn’t set up my keyboard in a permanent position anymore; afraid it would get damaged I had it boxed up and stored safely under the bed in the spare room and I feel that a neglected and unplayed musical instrument is sacrilege.
Funnily enough my depression started around the same time I boxed up the keyboard. I came to this realisation a few days ago but I knew my left hand is worse these days and I can’t improve my left handed playing at all now. I nearly got into a deeper form of depression with this realisation but then I watched a YouTube video to stop the negative thoughts in their tracks, I stumbled across a TedTalk by a woman named Barbara Sher and the title of the video was “Isolation is the dream-killer”; I have been thinking so much about how isolated I am despite my battle to escape from it because of the struggles I had with certain people in my life a few years ago. I thought maybe loneliness was one of the main reasons I am depressed, how can I be sure it is missing a musical instrument?
Well anyway, here is a link to see the video for yourselves – https://youtu.be/H2rG4Dg6xyI
She put out a question that I had to think about for myself and that is “What is your dream and what are your obstacle/obstacles”?
My first thought I don’t exactly remember, but I do remember that I had several dreams I have that are still unaccomplished and most of the those dreams boil down to financial insecurity where I have to think twice about buying a bottle of Pepsi and of course, isolation.
I browsed a book by my bedside, I think it was called “The Little Book of Wonder” and the lady who had written it said that you have to remain curious throughout your life, if you don’t know something, don’t shrug and think that it doesn’t matter and it isn’t important, if you had that question in your head, go and find the answer as it might lead you into an entirely different path in life.
So I absorbed those words and thought about stuff and then I browsed more YouTube videos and I found a doctor of psychology called Guy Winch in another TedTalk; He said that loneliness can knock significant number of years off our life and cause us to become ill, it can affect our immune system greatly because our emotional wellbeing determines whether we are healthy or not. This explained a lot to me, because since living in my own home with my husband and having a baby I have ironically became more isolated than I ever was before I left my parents’ house (ironic because my main form of abuse and neglect was social isolation growing up, even as an adult it was very coercive and controlling the relationship between my mother and I). But because I had a baby and fell ill just a few weeks shy from his third birthday, I became drastically isolated after being free from true isolation for nearly three years! In fact for the first eight months of my illness I couldn’t get out of bed to go and talk to a doctor about what was wrong!
It was around this time I decided to never talk to my parents again too, so the only guaranteed socialising I could have done when I became sick, I cut off. I was getting five or more phone calls per day from my mum and once a week visits that lasted six hours a time, to having no phone calls with anyone and only annual visits from my adult nephews, to then having just the annual visits ONLY for the next six years.
That isn’t good for anybody!
So I had a long hard look at my life and realised that depression and loneliness is killing me, literally. It must be, because around six years ago I was diagnosed with a handful of different types of auto-immunity diseases and recently doctors are suspecting MS and/or neurological problems as well.
One thing I have always been frightened of is Motor-Neurone disease, it runs rife on my dad’s side of the family and my dad’s family as a whole are very close within family, extensive family (we still talk to our cousins four times removed) but don’t socialise much outside of family and church friends or salvation army duties.
I wondered if illness due to isolation or loneliness could be genetic on my father’s side.
Anyway, Dr Guy Winch’s video can be found here – https://youtu.be/F2hc2FLOdhI
Worrying about being isolated, too sick to socialise and the expense of joining college or a social club (because I have to rely on public transport), I asked some questions to the universe. I asked the universe what you want me to do? What do I have to do to change things being there are more obstacles for me than anyone else I know? I got no answers.
Then I asked the universe that if my life was supposed to be to help motivate others, or be as creative as I can be in all creative interests I have then send me money somehow – if my life isn’t meant to be like this, then make something else happen to blatantly show me what it is I was made to do!
So, knowing that money doesn’t just fall onto the doorstep when you implore the universe to give it to you – I tried to make receiving it easy. I decided to (and this is no exaggeration) I decided to take a risk, I had just £15 left for my own personal treats (not the families, my own, I get around £40 a month just for me it is Paul’s rule that I treat myself each month) – I took that £15 and I spent it on 888ladies.com and I won £200, for me that is like winning 5k, I was so happy it paid off my overdraft and I could have a little to spend on a new bra and some new trousers as my clothes are getting too big on me lately. But I thought that doesn’t change anything; it just helps my current situation without improving it so I took another risk – I said the universe, if I am supposed to learn a musical instrument and buy art supplies I will need this again or a bit more please. So I rolled the slots again and I instantly won another £250 that is enough I thought, that is enough to get some art supplies and buy a cheap instrument – but I didn’t know what instrument to get?
This made me very happy and I decided to “Be Curious” as the book said earlier that night.
I asked myself some questions.
What does all these musical instruments I hear on the BBC Proms sound like as solo instruments? I didn’t know a majority of them singularly. So I again, went onto YouTube and I searched through every musical instrument I could think of to find solo samples.
I made a list of my favourite sounds.
An apprehension engine
There were others but I don’t remember them.
Then I asked…
What musical instrument can I learn that has limited mobility to the hand?
Perhaps go back to the accordion and this time learn to read music?
A recorder doesn’t require the left pinkie to play.
A xylophone – crystallaphone or a glockenspiel
I then thought about the types of classical music I love the most and I know that I love folk, medieval and baroque above all others!
So I decided on the recorder first and foremost and eventually the glockenspiel.
So I bought this recorder for me and Henry (because whenever I do something new Henry nags us to get him the same so he can share practise time with me, which is sweet and expensive sometimes)!
It was pretty cheap £16.37 each from Amazon.co.uk
It is a Yamaha YRS302BIII Soprano, plastic. When I had decided it would be the recorder I discovered a wonderful lady on YouTube called Sarah Jeffrey who teaches you practically everything about being a recorder player, she is very enthusiastic and passionate about the instrument and makes learning about it fun!
She can be found here, this is the first lesson https://youtu.be/-d6uVjIEkMY
Until I found her videos I never knew how many different types of recorders there are and that they can all be played the same way, because they are the same instrument. Different woods and plastic and lengths can make different sounds. A true and passionate recorder player will have a large collection of different recorders to choose from. I am getting a baroque alto before Christmas as I am taking to this instrument remarkably and yes, I am trying to learn how to read music now.
I have practised for three hours today and I am very tired now. I know it is likely I will have two months a year off from practise because I am prone to very nasty chest infections in the winter that usually always lead to pneumonia for some reason.
So, there you have it. The reason behind why I was late today.
Let me know in the comments below whether or not you are also musically inclined and share with me what you play and what you are passionate about, I would love to know!
I have hit the wall of shame again.
The word count this week is…
The above picture was taken by me and manipulated by me. I took this image around 2yrs ago in the Summer when I went for a walk by the canal near Newbold Quarry, Warwickshire. The daisy like flower was actually growing out of the crack in the wall just like that, sticking out of the wall about 8 inches on a single stalk. It was strange because the whole area had just grass and dock leaves and there was no other little white flowers like this anywhere else!
A huge slump, but then again, this week I have had a hard time with my immunity issues and other medical problems including a huge bout of unexplained depression, usually I can identify what causes the depression but for the past few days I cant.
I only wrote on three days, which were Sunday, Monday and Tuesday.
My body also hasn’t been working properly either, making me feel extra sleepy and my arms aren’t working properly for some reason.
Sorry this is a lazy post because I am so tired still. Sorry if it looks like I really can’t be bothered, I want to be, but I just can’t think at the moment, too drowsy.
I get bouts like this that happen on and off at irregular and without a pattern times and it can last for just a day or several days, I had a bout once that lasted for nearly 4 months, doctors aren’t too helpful in trying to find out what the blazes is wrong with me.
I accidentally posted something that I had second mind to delete too, sorry about that. I didn’t want to post it as it was a first draft and there were certain things I missed out or didn’t explain properly. It was written on a very bad day, I get huge brain fogs and concentration problems where things come out wrong or half formed.
Anyway, hope next week will be different.
Have fun with your writing folks!
P.S I apologise if this is at all incoherent, I am really struggling right now.
Sunday word count four – I’m not on The Wall of Shame huzzah!
This week’s word total is…
And possibly more as I have written approximately six pages of stuff by hand and haven’t typed them up on the computer yet!
It is good but I have written nothing at all for three of the days this week and my only excuse for that is I was exhausted and had gastric flu. Yes, sorry for the TMI (too much information).
The days break up as this;
11th August – nothing and that’s because our internet is still tetchy, in fact it has been tetchy again today too.
12th August – 1584 words, which is usually considered a low average for me.
13th August – 7483 words, that is amazing and I wish most days were like this! Especially as it is still the school summer holiday!
14th August – 637 words, quite low and not at all good in my opinion!
15th August – nothing, because I was busy with other things, mostly reading and calming Henry down and having what seems to be gastric flu.
16th August – nothing again because of the gastric flu!
17th August – 2678 words, which is my good average amount for daily writing. It is something I would do usually when Henry is at school; it is still the summer holidays so it is amazing I did my average word count for the day whilst he was home!
The writing I have done this week has been mostly notes towards my leprechaun fantasy, including a title change and rewriting certain weak characters to make them have more of a part in the plot of the story, because there was a lot of weak characters, some of which I will be deleting entirely once this fourth or fifth draft is complete.
I have not included the words towards new story ideas I have had this week, there has been three new novel ideas I have had, but I can’t start work on them until all this other work is finished. I am not bragging or anything but I really do have a huge backlog of ideas piled up in a corner of this room and it is getting ridiculous because I know that more than half will never ever be started, let alone finished as there is just too many! I think I must be the only writer in the history of the world who has her own slush pile for what ideas might work and what are weak!
I am also weighing up something in my mind a lot recently. I love reading and writing fantasy, horror, sci-fi and dystopian stories – I especially love and am addicted to my vampire stories, my saga I am doing. But I am reading a lot about how a writer shouldn’t really have too many genres under their belt and this is disheartening to me because I love them all. I can’t release my vampires or my fantasy in particular and there are at least four dystopian stories I really want to write; it seems to me that there are only really two horrors I have planned, so I can release the horror I guess? Though I have been told by so many people that horror is more of my strength than other types of fiction I write.
I thought I could just write anything and be appreciated just as much, but the more I research the more I am finding that this isn’t the case, I could be found unprofessional and disloyal to my original fan base. Even to have just the three genres could be too many. I don’t really know what genre vampires can be put into, because I have found them in so many different sections at the bookstore and in the libraries that they have confused me – they are put into the dark romance, dark fantasy, horror, gothic and erotica sections – so which is it? Dystopian novels can be put into science fiction, horror or thriller sections too. Fantasy also has about three sections, dark fantasy, adult fantasy, family fantasy.
I am struggling to decide which ones to say goodbye to. My fantasies tend to be comedy family fantasies and some of them are dark, very dark and borderline horror again sometimes with small interjections of dark comedy.
My Dystopian stories have links with science fiction ideas, new fictional type sciences and leans towards some religious or mythological ideologies or prophecies.
My vampires are more complexed as the sagas cross into so many genres, science-fiction, horror, romance and fantasy as even my vampires mingle with fairies and so forth.
It is apparently great to be different, but not so different that you can’t define your genre.
If I can’t define my genre right now, how can any of my future agents and publishers?
It is both a depressing and eye opening reality of being a writer.
It makes me feel so caged.
I really love and adore my vampire novels so much and they are a huge part of who I am, but I am not ready to kiss goodbye my leprechauns, mermaids, giants and dragons either. Nor am I willing to kiss goodbye my ripped up worlds full of warlords and surviving citizens and their struggle for salvation and freedom.
So who is going to take me seriously when I post out my stories to agents in a year or two?
Do you think I worry too much? Please post what you think in comments below.
Thank you for reading.
Once a week I will post up my practise pictures for the week, committing to something daily for just the blog is becoming a bit of a struggle, sorry about this. I am also going to be reducing my daily prompts to becoming weekly prompts instead; this will help you to be able to produce something to share as you’ll have more time to think about it. I would really like to see how people are using the prompts I give.
Also I want to try and concentrate on posting more, especially poetry as I have had quite a few private messages telling me how some of my poetry is helping people with depression, broadening their minds and motivating them; so I feel I owe my readers some more poetry than I have been producing of late.
I would also like to start posting a short story at least once a week myself, but I can’t fully commit to the fact that I will actually post a short story a week, just yet.
I am really trying to concentrate hard on producing full length novels and practising art.
I apologise for any disappointments this may have caused.
Thank you for reading and hopefully understanding ❤
It is not just writing that has gripped me as a creative person; over the years I have tried to practise art, but never seriously and I also have an interest in wildlife photography – again, I have never taken this seriously.
I am a self-taught artist who practises a few days every few months, so I do not practise daily and I have been doing this for the first time in my adult life since around 2012. I have decided to change this.
I have decided after watching a video on YouTube by Love Life Drawing https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qzhVOU47aSo to practise art daily for just one hour per day because it is said that if you practise doing something for 1000 hours you will become quite good at it, so an hour a day will make it approximately 3yrs before I become a much better artist and to me that is enough to prompt me into action. Three years is really such a little time.
I have never stopped learning something daily, so therefore I have the ability to continue learning new skills, some people when they get to a certain age give up learning altogether as they feel it is not necessary for them to be learning new things or because they feel that they are too old to change radically which I personally think is (excuse the language) bullshit; I am going to be thirty seven on my next birthday and I am already making radical changes in my life.
The changes are to learn how to become a better writer, learning grammar and punctuation, something ironically I have never bothered to learn before, shocking I know! Learning math, because I was mostly home-educated and math was a weak point for my main teacher (mum) so therefore after the age of eight I hardly learned math at all. Practising art, which is something my adult self never took seriously as well as wildlife photography – Paul is a former photographer so he is thrilled I want to take this up! Also I have a life-long goal that I have never taken seriously and that is to learn five languages before I die, I know enough French and Japanese to survive as a tourist in those countries if I ever go on holiday abroad, but I also started to learn Italian last November. So my five chosen languages to learn in life fluently are French, Italian, Japanese, Spanish and German. I am on the cusp of level 2 Italian right now.
So those are my goals, also my goal is to try and find some way in defeating my auto-immune problem or at least trying to work my way around it so I can actually get a life, a life I want as I am tired of merely existing to keep doctors in their jobs.
I am also determined to offer myself up to medical science whilst still alive, to find a way in repairing lost hearing, because I am nearly completely deaf and I am scared of losing the tiny bit of hearing I currently have. Recently I have lost enough hearing that I no longer hear certain beats and rhythms in music that I knew existed before and it really makes me depressed as I lived my life in music before the left ear started to fade away too. I learned the piano by ear (no pun intended) I can’t read music; I started to learn the guitar just months before my left ear started to play up. Music composure is another goal I always had and I have done some composing in the past; but when I learned I could be completely deaf by the time I am fifty and I was told I should learn British sign language, I decided to give up music and I don’t care about how Beethoven did just fine with his hearing loss, to me, I love hearing, I love language, I love music and it is hard for me to know I will hear less and less over the years.
I should really add a sixth language goal, to learn British Sign Language but I am afraid that the universe will take this as a resolution that I will go deaf and would make it happen faster. Stupid I know, I suppose I should give up Italian to learn BSL but I am denying things will get that bad… idiotically no doubt.
So I have decided to post up some art whenever I make it, I will try daily, but you know me, Procrastinator Extraordinaire. Well here is what I have done today and I want to tell you quite honestly, this is my second attempt at drawing a hand, my hand. Paul says that hands are notoriously difficult for artists to draw and he insists I have a natural talent for hands, I don’t know what to think about that, but O-K that’s amazing! I think my hand looks hideous on paper drawn by me, but the hand in itself is deformed slightly, my left hand has a tendon problems that leads up through the forearm and it is twisting more than just my baby finger these days and its becoming painful, something the doctor needs to be alerted on soon as Paul is terrified that if I fall over or support myself the wrong way the baby finger is just going to snap, seriously it is getting that bad!
Sorry for being so graphically cringe worthy.
Yes, I posted two daily prompts today, sorry about that, I knew that Saturday and Sunday I would be too busy to write the daily prompts so I tried to be clever and schedule them, but I did it on a day I was exhausted with only 4 hours sleep the night before and a migraine and it didn’t work in my favour – whoops, I am only human.
I am going to be busy until Wednesday, but I am still going to try and get the prompts up and tomorrows my weekly word count post too.
I'm on a life changing journey to 40. There will be ups, there will be downs. I'm like a roller coaster but with more agoraphobia.
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