Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Writing Bucket List

One of my fellow poets at shared recently on her blog about having a writing bucket list.  Most people know what a bucket list is, but here's a reminder.  A bucket list is a list of activities you want to do before you die.  Well a writing bucket list is like that, but it's a list of things you want to do pertaining to writing.  For example, I always wanted to write a Haiku poem.  A couple weeks ago I accomplished that with a poem called "Guardian Owl:"

Guardian Owl

Wizened Ga'Hoole owl
Keeping watch over owlets
Until the Spring thaw.

For those of you who might not get the Ga'Hoole reference, visit here.  Kathryn Lasky is the author of a series of children's books about owls called "Guardians of Ga'Hoole."  The first book was recently made into a movie titled "Legend of the Guardian: The Owls of Ga'Hoole" which is the title of the first book in the series.

Other things that I've accomplished that could be on my writing bucket list was to become a published author.  I've done that too, of course!

I'm in the process now I've been inspired by my friend's blog to try to think of other ideas pertaining to writing, and start creating my own writing bucket list.

On a different note: Happy Stormy Leap Day!

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Weekly challenges

There's a new weekly challenge at 21st Century Poets that's got me thinking (dangerous, I know!) about many different writing possibilities.  The challenge is to write a poem in any format or length you wish about a dream you had.  The dilemma is whether I want to write a new poem, or share an old one I wrote a long time ago.  I had a crazy dream last night that coincided with another dream I had a few months back that I didn't particularly want to write about, but both those dreams keep popping into my thoughts throughout the day today.  I'm just not sure about the wording I would use at the moment.  The title is easy to come up with because it's two dreams about the same activity, but they were both very different in content.  It's the content that has me in a dilemma.  Do I choose to write about one or the other, or try to incorporate a little bit of both dreams into the poem?  Should I write a separate poem for each dream?

I'm also slowly starting to write novels based on dreams I've had in the past.  They make up four of the ten book ideas I have in the works right now.  For now, they are on the back burner.

Anyway, that's what has me up at 1 am when I should be sleeping!  Any help in the decision making process would be greatly appreciated.

Friday, February 17, 2012

Two New Poems, and Other Stuff...

My mom gets me a copy of a publication called the Pacific Skinny, and gives it to me every Thursday morning when I see her.  The Pacific Skinny is comprised of a bunch of classified type ads announcements, but they also have jokes and funny pictures as well as a word search and crossword puzzle.  Anyway, in one of the joke type formats was this today: The difference between fiction and reality?  Fiction has to make sense.

Even though I know it was stated jokingly, I found it to be true.  Reality doesn't make sense at all, and is accepted as a part of life you have no control over.  However, a writer has control over the world he or she decides to create through fiction, and yes the finished product has to make sense in order for people reading a book to understand it.

The Unwanted Guest

Ack! What are you doing back here
Among memories so clear?
I screamed as you barged in my head
Stirring up trouble for me instead.

I don't want to waste my time on you
After what you put me through.
I thought I was done writing about you,
But look at what you have led me to do!

Get out of my head, you're not wanted
And I refuse to be haunted
By you any longer.
I have gotten stronger
Since we parted ways,
So why does your memory insist to stay?

You're an unwanted guest
That makes a pest
Of himself at inopportune times,
And forces me to tell you to get out in rhyme.


A gentle operating room
two lovers swoon
devours evangelical man’s noticing here,
and traditionally lives slowly enter narrowly
ravishing open pelvis demonstrably
’Round tired woman’s Nana.

The poem "Birth" was based on a keyboard smash given to me by the admin of the Weekly Writing Competition at 21st Century Poets.  She gave me a jumble of letters to write a poem with, and "Birth" is the finished product of that.

"The Unwanted Guest" is a result of my venting to a friend about a certain ex-boyfriend of mine interrupting another poem I was trying to start writing.  I hated how the poem eventually veered back to him when he wasn't the subject I was starting to write about at all!

The conversation also gave my friend an idea for a poem.  See her finished poem here.

I got word from VistaPrint today that my business cards shipped early, and are on their way.  Woo hoo!  I can't wait to get them in my hands.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Making up for Lost Time....

I've been without an Internet connection for a few days, and found it liberating.  I didn't miss being on Facebook all that much especially.  Since I got reconnected in the afternoon, I feel like I'm making up for lost time.  What I missed most besides the shows I catch up on during the week that I can't see because I don't have Cable was this blog, and 21st Century Poets!  I have poems I've shared on here that I have yet to add to my manuscript, and I still haven't taken the time to do that yet.

I have another couple poems in progress.  Well one isn't written at all, but is in the idea stage.  I wanted to write a poem about a lost loved one that stays alive in my memories, but when I tried to put pen to paper it veered off into an unexpected subject that I've based a second poem on.  Meanwhile, I still have the poem "Lavender" to finish as well.  "Lavender" mainly just needs a little brushing up and another verse to complete it.

I finished reading a library book, returned it, and started reading one I own since I was on the Internet last.  I've also watched a lot of movies that I was thinking of adding to my "At the Movies" blog which I haven't updated since last Halloween!  I've watched too many movies to share them all since then, but I will post about the most recent when I have more time.

Another thing I did the last time I was on the Internet was order some business cards through VistaPrint.  They have my Lulu Author's Spotlight address added to it as well as this blog's address and one of my email addresses in case any fans wanted to write me.  I'm expecting them in the mail next week along with a simple business card holder I paid extra to carry around in my purse.  I can't wait to start handing them out to people!

Saturday, February 4, 2012

What's Going on in my Writing World...

A friend informed me through her Facebook page that a little website called was back up, and open for business.  It was off the grid for a while.  Seeing as it was the first place I had any poetry published, I visited the site once again to reclaim my now archived works.  There was six poems in all that I included in my first book of poetry Fateful Firsts: A Collection of Poetry.  They were also published separately in different anthologies.  A couple of my archived poems ended up being duplicated, so I left a comment on those particular poems.  I only stopped contributing to because I started writing my own book.  It was nostalgic to go back to where it all began, and re-read through poems I wrote long ago.

I also have several new poems to share that I put onto 21st Century Poets.  I haven't won a weekly competition since writing "A Lover's Dance," but I've been diligently writing anyway.  Here's the new poems:

Concrete Angel
There is a concrete angel sitting atop
A mausoleum keeping watch
Over the inhabitants within,
And welcoming visitors of long lost friends.
Awaiting the day when Jesus will come again,
And slowly eroding away until then.
All that’s left is a picture
Taken to reserve the beauty of a fixture
Of the Christian faith
To which other believers can relate.

There are angels on Earth

That take many forms and are disguised.

This particular seraphim

Watches through stony eyes
As the world passes it by.

© January 29, 2012 by Amanda Waley
The Elementals
Just like the Muses are sister of nine,

The Elementals are also four sisters divine.

Earth, Air, Water, and Fire,

Know a lot about desire.

The one that represents air

Is the most fair.

”She’s Like the Wind” is her song,

And she can be very strong.

Earth is the Mother of us all.

Her girth is the life force as I recall

That makes animals, people, and plants-

From the petunia to the tiniest ant.

Fire is the most fierce,

And must be revered.

One little spark

Can leave anyone out in the dark
after the flames peter out.
Fire has a lot of clout.

Water is the most powerful

Because a whole bucketful

Can douse a fire out,

Saving the earth around it
As the wind just whips about.

Amanda Waley

© February 3, 2012

They all got a lot of comments from other poets.  It's been nice to read all the comments, and see how my words affect other people.  "Concrete Angel" was a poem written for the weekly writing competition.  It was a "What is it?" picture prompt.  The actual picture ended up being a male and female white tiger, but I guess the group admin liked my poem so much that this week's challenge is to write about angels.  I shared this poem that I published in my second book of poetry Second Thoughts: A Collection of Poetry because I wasn't really feeling inspired to write another angelic type poem after "Concrete Angel," and the picture prompt made me think more along the lines of the Angel of Death.

I've shared this poem here before, but here it is again to refresh your memory:

The Littlest Angel
The littlest angel

Is waiting for me

Among the clouds so billowy.

I will be there someday,

And we will play

I’ll tell him or her they were missed

Since the time they ceased to exist.

A hole in my heart will never be filled

As my secret is revealed.

It’s one of the reasons my heart never healed

From a rape so long ago.
This poem is what I have left to show,
And possibly grow
A little more stable
Emotionally than I’ve been able
To live for the past twenty years,
Mourning a life
Snuffed out like candlelight
Before he or she had a chance
To see my loving, motherly glance.

I think of you night and day,

And love you in every possible way.

I hope you know

That this is so.

I wrote the poem "The Elementals" because the Facebook/twitter group administrator wanted in this week's all the participating poets to write a poem using the elements of Earth, Air, Fire, and Water as the subject.  I also have another poem I entitled "Lavendar" partially written, and a short story I'll share later once I've got them typed up.

I also have a new writing blog I've created at Tumblr called "The Written Word" that I created to document my writing journey from the very beginning.  I wasn't sure about joining Tumblr at first, but a friend of mine had a page there I wanted to comment on and follow.  In order to do that, I had to become a member and create my own blog for people to visit.