2019-05-10 The Problem with First Drafts

I’m pressed for time today. Splitting my hours in two to get enough of everything done. That just means that nothing will be done right. You know.. things take as long as they take and half the time is never enough for that!

Last night I transferred about 10 new poems from paper into electronic format. I made small, obvious, edits as I went and was struck with inspiration for other changes a few times. Is any of that going to amount to anything? One never knows.

Before sharing in workshop or anyone else for feedback, every line is still subjectively evaluated on a singular mind. Namely the writer. That’s why I sometimes have no idea what might be well received and what might be looked at with wrinkled noses or unengaged eyes.

This is a problem I am not sure how to solve and it’s particularly challenging for me as one of the issues I have with my poetry and flash fiction is that it makes complete sense to me, but comes across as misunderstood. The connections and meaning are clear in my own head. I often think “this is perfect for my point”. And then I get other eyes on it and am met with comments like “what does this even mean?” And “I don’t understand what’s going on here”. Or “who” or “what” or “where”… or the worst one “why”. Oh My!

I try to “fix” this by making things more obvious, less abstract, but I always feel that’s a terrible compromise. The whole thing often turns into a terrible amalgamation of mixed metaphor and direct diction for clarification. I end up hating it and abandon the piece altogether.

I know my other problem is image and still struggle with using too much statement and not enough concrete nouns that elicit the desired visual or sound or feeling. I was born into a world ruled by free-verse that values Phanopoeia. Most of the time that’s just not how my brain works.

So what is a girl to do? I suppose since I am out of time, the answer is “nothing” right now. These problems will continue to roll around in my head and maybe I will find my answer at some point in the future when I least expect it. An epiphany in the shower perhaps, or whilst I’m pretending to meditate and falling asleep. Who knows.

Ciao for Now,

~Miss SugarCookie

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