I often find that helping others benefits myself and make me happy. I also see that altruism is contagious. When one person performs a good deed, it might cause a chain reaction of other altruistic acts. There are studies that found that people are more likely to perform feats of generosity after observing another person do the same. I believe that this effect can ripple throughout the community and inspire dozens of individuals to make a difference.
Let me be personal for one minute. I had dental surgery last week, and I have been in a lot of pain since then. I have to admit, I have spent a lot of time feeling quite sorry for myself!
But today something happened, and I have to say, helping others is rewarding in so many ways!
One of my readers wrote me some days ago, asking for advices on writing poetry. I immediately felt intimidated by his question, then a bit proud. Since I have been a bit self- centred these last days, I found it challenging to write about writing, while I myself was not writing.
I spent some time before answering his e-mail, and then today I finally got around answering and I found that it was rewarding to think through my own writing process.
I just received an overwhelming thank you mail, it was so nice.
And when I think about it, I think I should thank him, for his questions, because by helping him, I got my writing focus back. He is a reader of this blog, and complained a bit for my lack of posting this year, so I would like to use this blogpost to say thank you for asking my advice and sorry for the frequent – and long – pauses in my blogging.
As I have written about earlier, I find that I’m much more comfortable in giving advises towards other parts of the process, like choosing a publisher house, release days and parties , working towards the press, interviewing … yes pretty much the process that kicks in when your writing is done.
By writing my advices down, I realized that the work of being my books first spoke-person have been time consuming. Even though I say and think that I’m in the middle of my writing process, I realize that my focus has changed from writing to sale and publishing.
So when I wrote down my tips, I actually just wrote down my own “what to do –list” or at least what should be my list, as a writer.
Here I go:
- Say what you want to say. Let your readers decide what your poem means.
- Develop your voice. Get comfortable with how you write.
- Untitled poems are like unnamed children.
- The bigger your theme, the more important the details are. A poem with Love, Destiny, Hate or other huge themes in the title already has two strikes against it.
- Feel free to write a bad poem.
- Don’t explain everything.
- There are many excuses not to write. Try using writing as an excuse not to do other things.
- The more you write, the more you develop. Write poetry often.
- Don’t be afraid to write from a different point of view. Write a poem that says exactly the opposite of what you believe. If you can, do it without irony.
- When you write a good poem, one you really like, immediately write another. Maybe that one poem was your peak for the night, but maybe you’re on a roll. There’s only one way to find out.
- Write in different places. Keep a notebook. Write in a park or on a street-corner or in an alley. You don’t have to write about the place, but it will influence you whether you do or not.
- AND FINALLY: Listen to criticism and try to learn from it, but don’t live or die by it.
These are my writing tips! And this was my thank- you for asking –blogpost!