Posts Tagged ‘Children’s Poetry’

Even though I know very little about it; I just can’t help but love poetry. I love the way I am able to express my inner most emotions and capture them on paper. I am not educated on what the various forms of poetry are; I just write. When I was younger I would write a few then toss them aside, but I would share them with very few people. I would get words stuck in my head, these words were so intense and jumbled I would have to grab a piece of paper and just write them down. I never kept anything that I wrote, but I wish I would have. I also used to write short stories, but sadly those were tossed as well. In college I would get stoned out of my mind and write some kick ass papers. I some how managed to get A’s on 95% of them. I really wish I would have kept them, especially my papers which basically got me kicked out of a Crown College (A private Christian school.) I only just started keeping my writings, and thanks to the wonderful internet I am able to share them with whoever stops by.

I was first turned onto poetry when I read the book “Where The Sidewalk Ends” by Shel Silverstein.  I loved everything about this book. The way it flowed and captured my imagination was fantastic. I vowed in my young dreamer way that someday I would write poetry that would appear in a book. My other inspiration which enthralled me was the Dr. Seuss books. His books seemed so magical. I wanted to write stories that emulated that certain flow which made his books so great (I sort of modeled my children’s books off his style.) I was later influenced by Dylan Thomas, Sylvia Plath, Jim Morrison, and Edgar Allan Poe  to only name a few. These inspirations made me want to be a writer. This was always a dream I have had, but never thought anything would ever come of it. It was one of those things you store deep inside. The only time it is mentioned is in a “wouldn’t that be great” conversation.

As I grew up I still held onto this dream of becoming a writer, but focused very little on honing my craft. I cannot remember the last grade I was in where I was really present and trying. I was a space case who cared little about school; because of this I learned very little about grammar and sentence structure which still stunts me to this day. I remember in fifth grade I wrote a short story about something or other. I handed it in and I remember the teacher making a comment about how someday I would become a writer. I do not remember this teacher’s name, but her words have been the words that have always kept the fire burning inside of me. I bet you she probably doesn’t even remember making that comment; yet I carried her words with me for twenty years, and it has given me hope.

So now here I am. My first book was published by a shady publishing house so I consider that work gone, and I do not consider this as an accomplishment because technically my book wasn’t really published. I self published my next two poetry books which is great but it is not the same feeling as having an agent tell you one of the larger publishing houses has agreed to publish your work. Poetry is a dead art form and there is not much demand for it these days. I think most current poets don’t even bother trying to publish their work; they are just content with it being on their blog, or on one of the many poetry websites. Seeing your work on a computer screen is nothing like seeing your book in print.

I haven’t been able to write any kind of poetry since I published those last two books I think that was back in September. I went through a similar drought after my first book got published. I think what happens is it is emotionally draining process. I tap into the sap of my soul and pour out the love and pain in my life. When I start writing I just can’t stop it is like one right after the other it is truly a magical experience. The problem is I just don’t know how good my stuff is. I have received a handful of reviews located on my website http://thephilosophyofme.com/book-reviews.html. One of my favorite reviews which aren’t located on my website is from Simone at http://spontaneousoverflow.com/wordpress/?p=1751, Even though this review does not necessarily paint my writing in the most positive light; I still seem to like it. I would love to take several writing courses at schools to hone my skills. I think my mind is a perfect tool it is just dull at the moment.    

I wish I lived during the time when poetry was considered an art, and heralded by the people. I have been doing research and literary agents will not represent poets, there is just no market for it. This sucks because I am currently working on three other poetry books, but I am getting to the point where I say to myself why even bother putting in the time for something that will never be read? The question I have is should I continue to work on my poetry projects or just focus on something different? I am really excited about my Tao Te Ching poetry book. I think this one will be my best yet, but should I even take the time? I really think the only way I am going to find readers is through doing live readings; which I hope to do my first few in January. I figure this will be the test to really gage if my work is any good. My goal is to get a local following, and one day become the main headliner, if I am able to do this then I can take some satisfaction that my work has not fallen on deaf ears.

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People throughout the world have dreams and aspirations of becoming this or achieving that, unfortunately some realize their dreams and others do not. Many of us get sucked into the day to day demands and our dreams get put aside; filing it away for a later date. My dream has always been to become a published full-time writer. Prior to a month ago I found myself shelving this dream under the “This will never happen so why bother” file.

Starting a family at such a young age caused me to focus on making money to pay the bills, and my daily activities involved making sure we could do just that. My focus to the best of my ability was focused on my family. I honestly never thought I would amount too much except being a father and husband, nor did I think any of my personal dreams would come to fruition. I have always loved writing, prior to heading down this path I would write small poems on a scratch paper and toss them in the garbage. I always thought poetry was an extinct art and would lead me nowhere. Little did I know the events that started as my downward spiral resulting in a suicide note to my family would become a published book. The confidence of my book being published gave me the confidence to start this blog. I am now working on other projects to further my writing career.

I am in the first year of my 15 year plan, and to be honest with you I did not expect anything to happen with my book, and I expected nothing to happen with this blog. I have such low self-esteem of myself and this low self-esteem makes me think I will fail in everything I set out to do. In my perceived failing; my 15 year plan would become yet another disappointment in a long line of failures. To my surprise things are working out a little differently.

I did my first newspaper interview about my book, with my local paper. I was so nervous leading up to this. While I was doing the interview it all felt so surreal. I could not understand why anyone would be interested in anything I do or have done. When it was all finished I had a strange sense of accomplishment. I was able to open up my book of goals and check something off. It was such a glorious experience.

I have this strange feeling, something I am not used to. I have this feeling of joy, and a very strange sense. The exact feeling escapes me, and I am having trouble identifying it… The feeling is pride, I can not remember the last time I was proud of myself. It is a great feeling, and a feeling I hope to build on.

**Since this publication in February 2010 I have published my first children’s book “Dylan Thomas: Finds His Courage,” with another one due out in early 2011. I have also finished my next two poetry books “Yin” and “Yang.” These titles will be available in October or November 2010. I have done two additional interviews, and soon I will start doing readings at local coffee shops. I also started “The Bucket List Foundation.” It amazes me how things have been working out. I am still not a full-time writer, but I would have to say I am on my way.**