Sunday, March 9, 2014

March Madness Day 9


Ten years ago, before I started writing fiction, I experimented with a variety of creative outlets. Drawing flowers with colored pencils on black paper was one. Over the years I've sang, danced, played several instruments, written music, cooked, painted, flower-gardened, and written loads of poetry. My latest thing is the celtic harp.

This week I did something new and completely outside my comfort zone. Curiosity led me to participate in a local poetry slam. The fifty or so people who gathered at the downtown coffee house were mostly English majors from the university. Yesterday, Carol blogged about voice. I found the majority of poets who read Wednesday night had the exact same voice, same rhythm, same theme. I got bored really fast. When my number came up, I read something I'd written as flash fiction a couple years ago. When I finished reading, the room went silent. I knew I'd shocked and disturbed. That was my intention. Will I ever attend a poetry slam again? Probably not. But maybe I'll use the experience in some future scene in some future novel. Maybe. In the meantime, I've fallen behind with my March Madness goal and must catch up!

So dear ones, do you have other creative outlets? Do you try new things? Does curiosity lead you down new paths? What new thing have you tried lately? How's the March Madness coming along?

Don't forget to check in tomorrow at L.S. Taylor's blog

41 comments:

  1. Interesting! Now I am highly curious about your poem.

    I take photos, garden, knit and quilt.

    Cheers,

    Katherine

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    1. Excellent creative outlets! You can satisfy your curiosity here:

      http://yascribe.blogspot.com/2011/09/winner-of-selling-hope-and-flash.html

      Enjoy your day!

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    2. Wow. Powerful poem, Angelina. Really well done.

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  2. Did you draw that flower??? It's pretty! My artistic skill is limited to stick people and lopsided cats :)

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  3. Oh gosh. I remember that flash fiction challenge. I commented (and participated) as well. I bet jaws dropped at the poetry slam, as well they should've. Poetry is powerful, moving, and packed full of emotion.

    My creative outlets are gardening, crafting, painting (oils, acrylics, and watercolor), attending musicals (if I could sing-I'd be in them!), and teaching yoga.

    I'm on track with March Madness, but for today I'll be taking a little break. I'm driving my daughter down to the coast so she can spend a couple of days with her friends for spring break.

    March onward, Wipsters. :-)

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  4. When I first started writing back in 2000, I wrote poetry. I 'discovered' Anne Sexton and loved edgy, dark, and disturbing poetry. I wrote one very dark piece with crosses, blood, and anguish. My UCIrvine professor invited me to go to a poetry slam too but I chickened out. I do know that my poetry and memoir pieces dealing with my anger on my abuse caused silence to fill the classroom more than a few times. I have that one story based on all this darkness on the back burner...for now.

    Right now my creative outlets are venturing into romance writing. I've joined RWA and totally loving my local group. My goal is to write a romance or at least weave more of that element throughout my current project. And even...venture into New Adult or even just regular fiction. I'm going to be brave and just do it.

    Yay, for hosting! And double kuddos for actually being brave enough to read at a poetry slamming!

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    1. And yay for romance! Look forward to seeing that. ^+^

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  5. The celtic harp is lovely! My creative pursuits through the years have included oil painting, photography, music (a little piano playing and a lot of choir directing), pottery-making, and several things I tried just a few times, more out of curiosity than desire... like making a batik, macrame, embroidery, crocheting and knitting. I've written poetry occasionally, but it's not really my strength. I'm having much more fun writing novels, although I didn't add very many words to mine yesterday. Creeping along in chapter 2.

    Happy Sunday, everyone. Hope you remembered to turn your clocks ahead for Daylight Saving Time if this was the weekend for it where you live. :)

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    1. So much creativity, Carol! One of the things I love about Arizona is NO CHANGING OF THE CLOCKS--EVER!!!

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  6. I imagined everyone wearing black turtlenecks in your story. And then for some reason, you turned into Freddie Prinze, Jr. with a hacky sack. I bet you were amazing! :)
    I taught myself to play the piano (not well) and made up a few melodies that I recorded and gave to my parents for their birthdays one year. I've also been learning to do small woodcrafts with my husband's fancy machines. I've only come close to losing one finger. ;) As an incentive for myself, after I finish this month's project, I'm buying a ukulele. Kind of excited about that.
    I didn't do a lot of writing yesterday, but I've more than made up for my daily goals throughout the week so I am okay with it. Onward and upward!

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    1. Ukelele? How cool is that!!! Congrats on the goal making!

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  7. I sew, and I mother small children - which takes a lot of creativity. :-) I met my goal yesterday of getting my revision to my agent on the weekend. Except as I was writing the email to her, I realized a big thing I could do to increase tension in the climax - so I sent off the email, asking her if she thinks I should add that. Today, I'm giving myself the day off from MM and using my kid-free time to do some (almost) spring decluttering. Then tomorrow, I'll either dive back into another week of revisions, or I'll dive into planning and researching my shiny new WIP idea.

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    1. Time off sounds wonderful. Just got back from watching Monuments Men, which was kinda research related since I'm working on a WWII historical YA right now. Congrats on getting the revision to the agent. Best wishes!

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  8. Yay for stepping out, Angelina! This morning I picked up my hula-hoop for the first time in months. Felt so good. And remembered about March Madness, which feels even better. Now, off to revise for a couple of hours...

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    1. Hey there! I just started hooping again this week after many months away. Loved it! So happy to have you along for the Madness. ^+^

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  9. Your post today reminds me a lot of Dorothea Brande's advice about "wordless recreation" in Becoming A Writer. After I read that book I realized I spent most of my non-writing time reading or listening or talking or watching, and that I didn't have a lot of time for my mind to be quiet. Thinking back to Carol's post yesterday, I realize that it's harder for me to develop a strong voice in a WIP if all my "spare" time is filled with other people's words. I don't usually write very much on the weekends (the day job encroaches), but I've fallen into a rhythm were sat and sun are when I do the most "thinking" about my wips, and recharge for another week of writing. I bake and cook a lot, and have lately started to crochet (badly). I haven't made much progress on my word count since friday, but I've thought my way out of a few plot-holes which will make writing tomorrow a bit easier.

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    1. Excellent! Baking and cooking are terrific outlets. ^+^ Have fun with the writing this week.

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  10. I love having a variety of creative outlets. Writing is my favourite, my constant, but there are many other things I've done over the years (and still do) -- quilting and sewing, card-making, piano and guitar, photography. My newest creative venture is jewellery-making. I do all these things "when the spirit moves", lol, but the one I really miss when I'm not doing it is the writing. :)

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    1. Aren't we just the most talented group of writers? ^+^ Jewelry making sounds fun. Happy constant writing!

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  11. I LOVE that flower picture.
    The Philadelphia area has a "First Person Arts" program which I think of as a sort of "prose slam." Anyone interested in videos of their performances can see them at these 2 links:
    http://firstpersonarts.org/stories/blog/
    http://firstpersonarts.org/stories/

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    1. Oh, and I thought of those links because the First Person readers do all have very different voices.

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    2. Cool. Thanks for sharing. When I get an extra minute I'll give them a listen. ^+^

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    3. And thanks for loving my picture. I haven't done any of those in years. Maybe it's time. ^+^

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  12. Love that Disney quote! And I also look forward to reading your poem when I have a little more time and listening to you play the harp whenever I get to see you again :-).

    Besides writing, I love Polynesian dancing, and really all kind of dancing. I also enjoy cooking (when there's no parameters on me) and various crafty projects when I'm in the mood. I think having other creative ventures really feeds my writing creativity.

    Progress has been nice and stead the last few days. I completed a revision sooner than expected and now I'm onto outlining another project. It's a good month so far!

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    1. Wonderful! Keep sharing that nice and steady writing energy m'dear! ^+^

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  13. LOL it does become rather the same, doesn't it? Yet I find writing a random bit of poetry can help me shake up my sentence structure and stop me from falling into repetitive habits while drafting. Then there's this - the awesome poetry - that blows my mind and inspires me to always try and write better. If you haven't seen, its worth it!
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NBVJuA0jr6Y

    Working away at drafting the new book and querying the completed ms. Onwards!

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    1. Thanks for sharing. I do believe poetry is an excellent help for our prose. Have fun with the drafting and best wishes with the querying. ^+^

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  14. I'm another jewelry maker. Sometimes I like to people watch. I saw a fellow today wearing camouflage shorts over a pair of grey joggers. It was cold outside, so I assume he still couldn’t give up the shorts. There was a young fellow wearing bright yellow running shoes and a dirty yellow cap turned backward. I saw a fellow sitting on a chair and he lifted his t-shirt up and gave his tummy a scratch. I’ll probably never use these examples in my writing but I find more unusual people out in public than I could ever dream up.

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    1. People are fun to watch. I'm more of a watcher than eavesdropper. I love to observe those subtle tells that people give during conversations.

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  15. I love to do stained glass, boxes in particular. I love piecing the glass together. I think it helps my writing...or not. ;)
    612words today. Up soooooooo soooooo late. Going to bed. Have a great week everyone!

    Kat

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    1. Stained glass seems so fun! Congrats on all those words. Hope you slept well.

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  16. Again, I'm late to the game. Some of you may already know that one of my creative outlets is photography. It's time to meditate and see things in different ways, which ultimately has a positive effect on my writing. I tend to be a very descriptive, visual writer and I guess that is natural for me. I don't know if it is good, but it's natural! Skulking around in nature or walking through town, looking for the ordinary that is extraordinary is just one way I exercise my brain and feed my soul. I play with poetry, but rarely write it down anymore. It has become a mental excursion.

    And maybe this week, the wipmadness will finally pick up :-)

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    1. Love your photos. ^+^ Hope the madness charges forward.

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  17. This post pushed me to revisit my Ravelry page. Before I started writing fiction, I used to knit and write a knitting and food blog. I have been feeling the urge to create more things. I think my knitting needles want to be held.

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  18. Meanwhile, back at the Batcave...

    Movers and shakers kept me busy. Yesterday, in the form of my nephew and niece. Oh, and also moving. That's not done yet. My only solace is the fact I'm moving into an amazing new space with the Sisterhood where I'm already in the process of forming a new creative sanctuary.

    There are indeed other creative outlets I purposefully took up to give my entire brain a workout while I could rest my typing/writing digits.

    - I play the ukelele, piano, and guitar (with the hope of learning the cello)
    - I sing
    - I used to do theatre and going to the theatre with the Sisterhood happens regularly throughout the year
    - I'm determined to become a polyglot (so far, languages I speak/write to varying degrees: English, French, Tagalog, Spanish, Mandarin, and German)
    - I can draw still life. It's been awhile, but I did find it therapeutic. I'd like to learn how to draw people in detail, though.
    - I've done a couple of small cross-stitch projects
    - I can knit and purl... ish
    - I tried arm knitting successfully--until I ran out of yarn, waited to long to try and fix my glitch, and bumped the project off the rod in the middle of the night, letting it all unravel in a heap

    - oh, and I love to play and do arts and crafts with the kiddies.

    Busy, busy, busy, but otherwise I'd be bored! :)

    Also, I read your poem just now. First thing in the morning, it's certainly an intense piece of work. However, your talent and the impact of those words jumpstarted my day and I hope, despite this late check-in, we all have a productive week.


    Cheers,

    Tonette

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    1. I don't think you could ever be bored, Tonette. ^+^

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  19. I too am late checking in. It's slightly frazzling, but my weekends look to be consistently crazy this entire month. I did get some work done at the eleventh hour last night. Literally, 11pm!

    My favourite alternate creative activity is drawing maps for fantasy worlds. I love it, feeling out and imagining place, then bringing it to life. In every fantasy story I write, I like knowing where I am, even if I technically made it up. It makes things way more real to me.

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