Saturday, June 12, 2010

Writer's Meme

1. What's the last thing you wrote?
I finished a poem yesterday which I'm going to post tomorrow.  It's called "Immature".

2. Is it any good?
I don't know.  I'm not a very good judge of my own poetry.  Or rather I'm a very good judge of what's a good poem, but I'm willing to put things out there that are just okay in my book.  I think it's a good poem.  It started as a response to the door prompt at We Write Poems and I struggled with it.  It went somewhere in the first draft that just didn't work out.  Then I cut out the last section.  But I still couldn't finish it; I could have left it as it was, but it still seemed fragmentary to me.  Then I cut out the second section, which left it a complete poem, but not a very serious one, and it wanted to be more serious.

3. What's the first thing you ever wrote that you still have?
I don't have any of the poems I wrote in high school, but I do have some that I wrote in a poetry writing class I took with George Barlow at De Anza College back in the mid-eighties.

4. Favorite genre of writing?
Currently, poetry.  But I enjoyed writing a novel back in November for NaNoWriMo, and I'm sure I'll do so again.  I'm also working on my memoirs for my boys.

5. How often do you get writer's block?
I don’t get writer's block.  I sometimes get stuck trying to get a poem where I want it to go, but I'm not "blocked" in that sense.

6. How do you fix it?
I'll write total garbage, just to get something down on paper.  Or I'll set it aside and work on something else.  If I'm stuck on one thing, I've got all kinds of ideas for other poems or writing projects that I could work on.

7. Do you save everything you write?
Yes.  I'm a hoarder.  (My poor wife).

8. How do you feel about revision?
Revision is absolutely necessary.  Some poems do come out pretty well in a first draft, but I don't think I've left anything untouched - at least, not recently.  I may have when I was younger and didn't understand how important revision can be.  Other poems just aren't worth revision; they just don't work - and can't be made to work.

9. What's your favorite thing that you've written?
I couldn't choose.  (It seems self-indulgent to me).  Or rather - the last thing I wrote is my favorite, so my favorite keeps changing.

My favorite blog post was about NaNoWriMo, which got excerpted by Renaissance Learning in their Extraordinary Educators newsletter.

10. What's everyone else's favorite thing that you've written?
I wrote a poem a day in April as part of the Poem a Day Challenge at Poetic Asides.  I asked a colleague of mine, also a writer, and my wife to choose their favorites.  Of the fifteen or so poems I gave them to read, they each chose seven that they liked.  They agreed on four of them: "Pacific Grove", "I love my country", "Reflecting", and "According to the waves".

11. What writing projects are you working on right now?
I’m writing poems in response to various websites who are posting prompts, and posting them here.  I'm also trying to work my way through the prompts posted in April at Read Write Poem, which I didn't discover until the last week of the month.

And this summer, now that I'm not working, I want to write more of my memoirs, a writing project for my two sons.

12. What's one genre you have never written, and probably never will?

13. Do you write for a living?
No.  I'm a teacher, which does include a fair amount of writing, but that's not what they pay me for.

14. Quote something you've written, the first thing to pop into your mind.
We forgot
we had freedom of conscience
before we had
freedom of religion.

* * * * *

I got this from Writer's Meme, a blog post by Poet Mom.


  1. Thanks for posting your answers. The nice part about the meme for me is reading favorite poems by other poets. I really enjoyed "Pacific Grove."

  2. January, thanks for the meme. I enjoyed answering those questions. And I'm glad you liked "Pacific Grove".