Monday, 30 December 2013

Want a new writing challenge for 2014?

I really admire Tess at Magpie Tales for being so diligent and dutiful with her writing prompts every Sunday.  She has been instrumental in providing some great creative food for thought to poets, bloggers and aspiring writers everywhere.  Her picture prompts have been mysterious, challenging, captivating, intriguing and fun.  Although I haven't managed to participate every week, I've enjoyed the creative challenge on various weeks through the year. I recommend checking out her site, Magpie Tales in the New Year.

Happy New Year to my blogging buddies and readers, wishing you all the best for 2014.  

Here is my attempt at Mag 200, the last one of the year.  Francis Bacon, a Self Portrait.

Picture Prompt

Our first home
Not brand new, on some fashionable development
But old red-bricked, in a quiet and unassuming street
A small, affordable and cosy space,
Just big enough for the two of us.
We danced on the wooden floors of knotted pine.
The old dresser, a cooker and one battered comfy chair
Our luxuries of possession, debt free and resourceful too.
Memories caught by your old and faithful lens,
Pictures saved in hard backed books
For laughter, retelling tales and sharing
With the next generation
Where images move at a quicker pace.

Thursday, 19 December 2013

What happens when the writing stops?

Before me lies the white page, fresh, clean and devoid of writing. Then a thought appears, as if by magic. ‘What will I write about?’ And the thought tosses and jumbles words wondering how to translate an idea to the page with ease and eloquence.  A further thought questions the intention of the first thought, ‘How will you engage the reader? ‘ The mood is upon me to write something but kick-starting the process is taking a little time. Often the hardest bit is making a start, a start to write.  I notice something strange happening - the questions are enabling my fingers to tap rhythmically on the keyboard.  Perhaps that’s part of the answer – to allow fingers to tap rhythmically.  When this happens I am pleased to see the words unfold before me.  Do they make sense?  Do they tell a story about the hesitant writer, the writer who is anxious about having nothing to write?  As I continue to tap on the keyboard, I see the words appear.  I write, simply write and my mind wanders to the next question – ‘Write, yes but what about?’
  • I could tell you about my week but how much of that would be of interest to read?
  •     I could share my days at school; great learning from small children and their entertaining take on life, school and home.  I think that we don’t laugh often enough.  What would happen if we did?
  •    I could mention something about sharing a Christmas meal with friends.  There is much laughter away from the busyness of the day and the constant demands from people, big and small. Why don’t we do this more often?
  •    I could mention my annoyance about my 95-year-old friend who had to wait four hours for an ambulance to take him home from hospital or my smile when he texted me that he had arrived home safe and well. My offer of a lift was not needed after all.  I am mindful not to hamper his independence, as that remains a high priority for him. Don’t you love 95 year olds who text?
  •    I could share the wonder and magic of not one but two trips to my local Centre for the Arts to be entertained inspired and uplifted this week. Is it possible to change the world just by being kind?  One such question was excellently scripted and written by Bernadette and Gareth in ‘366 Days of Kindness’. What can I do to change the world? 

And lo and behold, the page has filled before me with words and writing.  There is no expectation on my part that this piece of writing might win an award. The chances are that it may not be read by anyone in the blogging space, and that doesn’t matter either.  However, what does matter is that my writing has shimmied up the fence of obstruction, knocked it over and allowed the words to flow freely once again. For me, today that’s okay.  Happy writing.