My Creative Writing: Poetry

Hey there, readers!  Well, it looks likes it’s time for another poetry piece!  This poem was inspired by the song “The Lonely” by Christina Perri, though it’s style is different than what I write with now.  But yeah, as always, I love comments, and thank you for reading!

 

The Dancer

No sound do her feet make
Nor are her hands empty
As she treads on the polished, springy floor.
Ever her toes and ankles ache,
And her knees hurt already –
They pay the price for her dreams to soar.

She turns the music on,
The piano plays with emotion,
And she becomes like a river’s cold, clear water:
Fluidity, her slender arms don,
Her eyes blue as the ocean,
She begins her dance without a single totter.

Limbs begin to move in time,
Feet start their soft thumping,
Her whole body writhes in molten movement,
Her weaving and winding, sublime.
On each crescendo jumping,
And every moment whirling, she embodies lament.

She reaches out to an unknown,
But pulls back and crumbles.
From the motionless heap comes a little cry –
Up looks a teary face of stone,
A mix of genuine and scumble;
For she dances to escape, to run away, to fly.

Spins, twists and she’s off balance,
But still moving, so painfully.
Aches in her hard muscles and willowy limbs
Make her wince in her stance,
And dance all the more carefully.
But she dances on as the light of day dims.

She tilts her head back,
Arms lifted up to heaven,
On her knees, as if to silently beg heaven’s God.
A crescendo in the music
With the climax on count 7,
And she has no choreography worthy to applaud.

She just stands there,
Her shoulders squared,
With feet standing firm, her eyes searching ahead.
But it’s just empty air
And again, she’s scared,
For her dancing search ends in naught instead.

So she dances on with the smooth, leaping melody,
Her movements fervent, as if screaming in rhapsody,
She mixes emotion and movement with anguish.
But she stumbles, her energy beginning to languish
And falls as the song spirals to an end and dies.

Sweat and crystal tears mingle their salty heat
And run off her face in rivulets to fall at her feet.
Her thin chest heaves and she trembles with fatigue,
Looking at her shaking little hands with old intrigue
As if they betrayed her and caused her weakness.

She sobs as the CD runs out of piano music to play,
Knowing that with the darkness at the end of the day
Comes the end of her search until she’s free tomorrow,
When she can dance again in her great, tearful sorrow,
Still searching fruitlessly for the painful, illusive answers.

So she takes off her beloved dancing shoes, for now
Empty of the dancing beauty she can in them endow.
Tomorrow is a new day – but not filled with answers,
Only many, many questions, and precious few dancers.
So she’ll come here to dance again, alone in her useless pain.

Publishing… And All It’s Difficulties

Hello readers!  This time I’ve got a video for you about the publishing process.  The guy talking is George Wier, author of the Bill Travis Mysteries.

 

I think this topic is interesting in that there are a lot of ways you can approach it, yet the conclusions you can reach at the end are actually few in number.  Wier makes the point that the “traditional publishing route” is extrememly hard and long, but it’s the “normal” way, and it’s the established/proven/”safe” way.  What I mean by “safe” is that you know you’re doing someting right when you try getting published that way because (to continue the analogy) it’s a well-traveled path – lots of people had tried it and failed, and a few have tried it and succeeded.  The facts say that the chances are stacked agaist you whether you’re a genious writer like Terry Goodkind, or just someone trying to make their living as a writer by putting in their very first novel for publication (i.e. someone like future-me…).

And yet, who’s to stop you?  I mean, Wier talks about two other approaches to publishing (but leaves out the whole idea of self-publinshing…), but what’s wrong with simply having hope and trying your best?  Yes, yes – *sigh* – I know I’m sounding very naive right now, but what’s wrong with makeing a plan for your life based on the future success you think you can acheive?  I know this post is starting to sound more like a pep-talk now, but I think this needs to be said: there may be facts.  There may be odds.  There may even be – wait for it – opposition! But why should that discourage you (I mean, us) from doing things the way we can and want to do them?

I happen to be one of those people who thinks that if you want to succeed at something, you should educate yourself as best you can and then try to do your best to succeed in that endeavor by and means that are available until you do succeed.  In this case (in my case), that means trying the established ways first, and then, if those established ways prove to fail, the less conventional ways.

In other words, if I want to be a successful, published author, I should get myself as prepared and trained as possible and then try to get myself published through the ordinary, traditional way first.  If that doesn’t work, then I’ll try other means, working my way through my list of options until I find one that works.

What I’m trying to say is, if you want to do something, TRY IT before you get discouraged.  Don’t freak out from the first moment you hear the oppostion and odds…  That’s just a recipe for failure – in fact, doing that gets you a day or two’s travel down that road already.  I think that is what we can learn from this video more than anything else.

My Creative Writing: Prose

Well, it’s that time again(:  But I just realized that I haven’t told y’all which pieces I picked to submit for my University’s annual student art book!  A few weeks ago, I made a post to show you guys which pieces I was considering submitting, and the deadline was the 22nd, so these are the pieces I chose: Feathered Ice, Poison, and Ink.

For this week’s piece of creative writing, then, I’ll show you the prose piece I submitted: Feathered Ice.  I posted this short story on the original post that had all the pieces I was considering submitting on it, but since that post included 6 different pieces, it probably didn’t get that much attention.  I’m not sure when I’ll know if my three pieces were included in the art book, but when I know, I’ll be sure to write a post about it!

But for now, here’s Feathered Ice.  I wrote this after a particularly cold night in November or December of last year.  It was the particularly hostile, painful cold that inspired this piece.

 

Feathered Ice

Snowflakes begin to fall as I walk, appearing out of the inky sky as if they were summoned for the night’s lack of silent light and feathery fantasy.  I look up to watch them float to earth, making myself dizzy trying to find the cloud that gave them life.  A smile turns up the corners of my mouth as I imagine their shimmering dances through the night’s breezy winds and frost-covered gusts.  I imagine that they are dancing around me, alighting upon me for just a moment before fading to dust as the wind eddies around me.  It pulls me into the dance with them, and tosses me from partner to partner as I laugh and revel in the beauty of the winter scene.

But the cold tonight is also biting.  The few fingers that still peak out the ends of my coat sleeves feel as if icicles with needled teeth are gnawing on them with a voracious hunger.  As I walk through the freezing night, I watch the steam rise and writhe from every exhalation, imagining that, if the temperature dropped, the air would freeze in my lungs and turn me to stone from the inside out.  I shiver and hug myself tighter, clenching my muscles in a vain effort to hold in more heat, but I realize that the night is indeed getting colder, even as I hurry my feet along the path before me.  The snow abates, ceasing its merry dance, and ice crystals take their place.  They sting my cheek, rather than kiss it.

It’s as if I can see a thermometer in my head, watching as the red liquid slowly falls, my skin feeling the cold creeping closer and closer to my stuttering heart.  The trees around me glisten with ice, and I can hear it crunching and squeaking beneath my feet.  I look down and see that the grass has frozen so hard that it sounds like glass shattering with every step.  The sound has a shriek to it, and I imagine I can hear the grass crying out in agony with every tread of my heavy feet.

Now I wish I wore my heavy snow coat, for I feel as though every single molecule of water in the air has frozen solid.  Every breath hurts now, as the needles of ice stab at my lungs with their ever-present hunger.  I can feel them inside me, jabbing with such force that I stumble, gasping for oxygen, yet I cannot breathe normally for the pain that every wheeze causes.  My feet drag now, still slowly carrying me towards my goal, but their shuffling steps crunch through even more ice grass than before, and the sound begins to deafen me with its intensity.  The shrieks pierce my skull with shards of sound, and I shriek my own scream of agony.

I can no longer feel my legs, and the world spins in whirls of blue and black as the cold takes me captive.  I can’t feel it when the blades of grass stab me—my entire body is numb.  I can’t feel the hot blood flowing from my wounds—I can’t feel my life draining away.

But it’s ok.  I realize that I am no longer cold.  My core is warm… my heart is so warm.  No more does it stutter and stumble and stammer.  Now it waltzes with the warmth, happy to be free of its restrictive beat.   My fingers give a last tingle before they too succumb to the comforting heat.  It’s making me sleepy, the warmth…  It’s so comforting, so gentle, so beautiful.  It calls to me in a voice as soothing as a mother’s coo.

The smile that glows on my blued lips and shines in my darkened eyes is but a shadow of the joy that fills my heart at the approach of warm death.  Did you know?  He wears shining white… not tattered ink.  He carries a staff, not a sickle.  When He calls your name, He does so with a smile on his lips.  And His touch is a kiss, not a blow to those who answer his call with obedience.  So what wrong is there in following a being such as He?  Death… what a cruel name to bestow on one so beautiful.  Light fills me as I feel the weight of my body being lifted, and suddenly

 

 

I am free.

When Books Die…

They won’t.  I understand that a lot of people (especially authors and writers) are freaking out because, since the rise of technology has been swift and steady – and is predicted to continue rising, at an ever faster rate – print books, like so many print magazines and newspapers nowadays, will eventually die out.  I do understand that fear: I felt it too, for a while.  But then I realized that, as long as there are people like me who love books – the real, printed things with musty pages and rich-smelling ink – the book industry will never die out.

Of course, it’s unrealistic and impractical to pretend and claim that things won’t change.  I fully expect the publishing industry to evolve and adapt to the changes that are happening as of now, but that’s natural and normal.  Of course things must change as time goes on.  On the other hand, I think that some of the changes will mean that the number of people and books being read online, or on other things than printed pages, will increase, and that change, in term, will cause some major changes in the writing and publishing industries.

There’s actually a debate going on right now (http://voices.washingtonpost.com/answer-sheet/checking-it-out/checking-it-out-part-i-reading.html) about whether reading from a page or a screen is “better,” but conclusions about the matter are mixed and… well… inconclusive.  Personally, I hold to the belief that people (including myself) read things slower and with better content retention when we read it from a printed page, as opposed to a document or page on a screen.  We’ve “conditioned” ourselves that way, to use a psychology term: that is, we’ve trained ourselves to read faster, skimming more, with more impatience and emphasis on speed while reading from a screen, while we’ve learned and trained ourselves to believe that sitting down with a book or looking over a page in hand is more intimate and meant to be slower, with better retention and attention.

Anyway, to sum up my argument, I think that the industry will change, yes, but I don’t think it’ll change so drastically that printed books will cease to exist.  I far, far prefer to read off a page than from a screen, and, as a writer who hopes to become published someday, I think that my role as a writer might also change somewhat.  It’s becoming more and more popular to self-publish now, and though I don’t think I’ll be doing that for myself, I am definitely involved with numerous online sites where I can post my work for publicity and critique/feedback.  So while I like some of the perks that Internet networking can provide, I don’t think it will replace printed books.