Let us be grateful today that it is not 2006, for that would be the sign of the Devil and probably nothing good would get done. Probably.
Here’s a brief recap of this #1000WordsOfSummer so far:
- Day 0: I wrote a plan for the two-week endeavor. It’s a good plan and includes a list of things I want to get done. I like plans and lists. And turtles. The plan + blog post = 1238 total words.
- Day 1: I combed through the last week of “daily poems” that have arrived in my inbox. These are mostly from poets.org and Paris Review but I do get stuff on Mondays from Electric Lit and other random days from a few other places. I found four poems that I enjoyed for one reason or another and took each last line as a jumping-off point for a section of a new poem. It was definitely a struggle but with effort, I cobbled together a new poem. It could be good or terrible. I don’t know because when I was finished with that exercise I put it away and have not looked at it again (yet). Oh, and I wrote a blog post, you know, to boost my word count. Poem + blog post = 1143 total words.
- Day 2 (yesterday): I decided to work on revising a flash nonfiction essay I wrote last year called “Party of One at the Wine Bar.” I know the challenge is all about writing more new words, but part of my plan is just working on all aspects of writing which includes revision. I worked on it for a few hours and I think it’s ready for someone else’s expert eyes. I personally don’t know what more it wants or needs (or if it’s a decent essay or trash). I might share it with Suz and Michelle to see what they think. I did not write a blog post so I’m just going to count the total words from the essay as my word count for the day = 924 words.
Today I don’t feel particularly called to any one project. I checked my inbox for new poems and there’s only one now and I was dreadful. Part of me doesn’t understand how a dreadful poem could be selected by the Paris Review for publication in the first place and then on top of that, someone chose it to send out to their entire list of “daily poem” subscribers.
I did recognize the poet’s name and part of me thinks that’s key. The poet had probably already achieved some level of notoriety in their career and THEN the Paris Review said, “ok, we’ll take your shitty poem because people know you.” I think this happens in a lot of places. All those top-tier lit mags publish a lot of well-established writers and it’s a snowball’s chance in hell they pick a piece of writing from an unknown author. This is what I told Jim about The Sun recently.
That was the first lit mag I ever submitted anything to and I did it before the MFA and before I knew anything about anything. Including what good contemporary poetry looks like and also that The Sun only publishes rockstar authors.
Anyway, so I don’t have a plan today and the advice from the daily newsletter suggests not listening to any advice and doing whatever the hell feels right to you. That’s funny. Advice that tells you not to listen to advice. But if I don’t listen to the advice, then I will NOT do whatever the hell I want and consult my existing plan. Perhaps that’s the ticket.
Or I’ll just wax on and on about all of this for the next two weeks and call it good.😜
Peace and Love,