Sodaro's Stories

October 31, 2010

Pondering about poetry

Filed under: Writer's thoughts — michelle sodaro @ 2:17 pm

I am a fan of poetry, although, if I am being honest (which while I am the writer of this, why would I be anything but honest, to a certain extent anyway) many many poems escape my comprehension. I have been told that I am not a deep enough thinker and that is why I didn’t understand the poems…I think, as with all forms of art that more frequently than not, the beauty and the brilliance is in the eye of the beholder.
I have written over 400 poems. I will be publishing 3 books of poetry in the upcoming months, either through self-publishing or by a bit of magic, through an agent (I am hoping when I send off my completed novels and novels that will become series, that the agent will drool over all of my projects…I live in a nice world in my head). Of those poems, some will never be published. They are too private, too personal, to be shared…not because of what they would reveal of me, but for what they would reveal of others.
I am more comfortable with rhymed poetry than with free verse. Free verse to me feels like prose that has been cut at random places to turn it into poems. Free verse, done well, is quite rare. The trouble with rhyming poetry is that the sing-song quality that can be heard with a poem that rhymes. Dr. Seuss did it amazingly well and made his entire world a sing-song-y bunch of fun and ingenuity. But when writing a poem that touches the deepest, darkest parts of my soul, it seems to cheapen it by having each line end in a rhyme.
I have tried free verse, but it doesn’t connect to me the way rhyming poems do. The rhymes seem to come to me naturally and sometimes I can’t write them down fast enough. I had a friend in my master’s that didn’t believe me when I told him I could write a good poem in about 20 minutes. So I showed him. My muse speaks in rhymes…when I try to make her speak in free verse, she protests quite a bit, but gives it her best shot…as she does with everything…but I try to not tax her with free verse too much, just in case it does more damage than pancakes could heal.

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October 22, 2010

And my Masters pays for itself again…

Filed under: Writer's thoughts — michelle sodaro @ 6:52 pm

Some times, I get it right. It’s amazing when it works. It is beautiful and magical and fantastic…when it works.
So, my Master’s thesis was about the using of writing to help people work through things. It took bibliotherapy and kicked it up a notch. Instead of reading a particular book that dealt with a specific issue, my thesis focused on the healing power of writing, be it poetry, creative writing, or my favorite; freewriting. I remember a student a thousand years back that had anger issues; he fought with his family all the time and it kept getting worse. He took my class where we would journal and freewrite. The letter he wrote to me will always remind me why I do what I do. He wrote to me about how he used freewriting to help him deal with what was bothering him with his family. How he would write it all out and that would replace the screaming and the anger.
So yesterday I was feeling all bottled up inside. Too much to think about and even worse, too little in my control. I felt like I was going in about 17 different directions and making progress with nothing. So I took my pretty shiny pen and a brand new notebook, and I just let it out. Just opened the tap and let it out. And today? Today, I wrote one complete chapter on my newest novel, wrote a poem that had been brewing for a couple of weeks now, and wrote a scene for a play that I had been blocked on for a months now. It was a very good day for me.

October 18, 2010

Putting the puzzle pieces together

Filed under: Writer's thoughts — michelle sodaro @ 2:42 pm

Sometimes you can sit and stare at a puzzle for hours, days, months, years and no matter how you turn the pieces, how you rearrange them, how you put them in groups, no matter how sure you are that this piece goes in this particular place…none of that can matter…and then suddenly, there is a change which could seem so minor and unrelated at the time, but it changes EVERYTHING. And suddenly the pieces seem to put themselves together and the picture becomes crystal clear and more beautiful than you could ever imagine…certainly better than anything you could have planned on your own.
Everything happens for a reason. People say this to the point that it loses its meaning, but it remains true. The big things happen as a result of little things and the little things happen as they are meant to…it’s not about free will vs. determinism. We have choices. There are always choices…but most people spend so much time thinking about what other people want them to do, what other people want them to choose, what other people need, that they don’t choose the things that are in their own best interests. I chose to leave a job that was in everyone else’s best interests. I chose to listen to my inner voice and do something that was my truest wish. And since then, amazing things have happened. I have met people that are helping the pieces fall into place. I have found a support system that is amazing and will not let the pieces fall apart. They are my puzzle glue. Pieces I didn’t even know what to do with yet are now moving together of their own accord. It is an amazing thing to be a part of and there are times I just want to watch and see the picture that forms, but I can’t just sit by and watch for long…I’ve wanted this puzzle for far too long.

October 10, 2010

Too many cooks…

Filed under: Writer's thoughts — michelle sodaro @ 4:48 pm

It is always an awkward time when someone asks if they can read my unpublished books. I know that their request comes from a good place. I know that they see it as being supportive and are sure that I would welcome any advice they would give or opinions they would have. I truly appreciate their interest in my projects, I really do. It warms my writer’s heart and truly makes my muse giggle with delight…
My hesitation in handing over my rough texts who have not yet been polished, not yet been sent out into the world is complicated. There is of course the thought that if I hand it over to everyone that asks to read it, there will be no one left to buy it when it is published…
But there is also another thought…the “too many cooks in the kitchen” idea. If all of these people read my books before they are published, and I get all of these opinions about things that are not yet concrete, how do I distinguish between good opinions and bad opinions? How do I tell this person that yes, you should read my book and yes, please tell me what I should change and this other person, no, you can’t read it yet and no, I don’t want to change that?
Mostly I avoid this issue by not letting anyone read anything I have written…but I now find myself trusting a reader with my words that I have not even read through…have not edited and fretted over. I write them, I type them, and I hand them over to one who handles them with kid gloves and knows what it is that is held. It is a rare thing indeed to find someone who understands that.

October 6, 2010

Sometimes it’s hard to be around real people

Filed under: Writer's thoughts — michelle sodaro @ 7:20 pm

All I want to do right now is play with my pretty novels…invite my characters over for some popcorn and Coca-Cola and just do what we do when we all get together. Today I don’t really want to be around actual people at all; for actual people disappoint and confuse and in general are not as dependable as fictional people are. Anytime I am feeling down, Atticus Finch from To Kill a Mockinbird can bring me right back to thinking there are people who are worth it after all. There are real people who make me think this too, of course…but today, I don’t want to play with real people…I want to play with the people I have created for the stories I have dreamt up…I want to see what wild adventures they could take me on, what sights I could see, what truths I could learn…in general…I want to play in a world that is not reality today.
Just lock the world away and play with words…sigh…real world is calling and for today, I have to answer. But tomorrow…tomorrow is play time.

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