Category Archives: NaPoWriMo 2013

Where have all the poems gone?

I spent April 2013 furiously penning a poem a day for NaPoWriMo – National Poetry Writing Month. Each poem was posted on this blog (trust me!) and some people were even kind enough to stop by and read them (thank you!). But, as the hardy souls who took part along with me know, any poetry written in NaPoWriMo can only ever be considered as a first-draft.

So the time has come to take all the poems down for another year, find my editor’s pen and smarten them all up a bit before they’re seen or heard anywhere else. Perhaps May should be designated NaPoEdMo…

In the meantime, you’re more than welcome to explore the various other musings that are here, and to look out for any other nonsense that I might post in the weeks to come. Thanks for visiting.

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Final Thoughts for NaPoWriMo 2013

A few things I’ve learned from NaPoWriMo that I wanted to share…

  • Figure out how blogs work before you start (I’m still working on this…).
  • After you’ve written your final poem for NaPoWriMo, you’ll feel like you never want to write another poem again, ever. This feeling will last for about a week.
  • What you think is rubbish poetry isn’t necessarily what other people think is rubbish poetry; the same goes for what you think is your good poetry too…
  • There are lots and lots of lovely people out there writing poetry just like you; and they often wonder why on earth they do it, too…
  • Some people will manage to post a poem a day in NaPoWriMo, others won’t. Either is perfectly OK, because no-one’s really counting; it’s the poetry that really matters.
  • Take heart that there are thousands – maybe tens, possibly hundreds (maybe!) of thousands – more poems in the world at the end of NaPoWriMo than the beginning.
  • Some days you’ll really look forward to the prompt coming through, and relish writing your poem; other days you’ll just be glad to get it of the way.
  • You will make new friends. Some of your new online friends will become real-life friends. Who knows, one day, some may even become lovers…
  • A few words of appreciation, encouragement or a ‘Like’ go a long way – however, don’t expect it, and don’t be downhearted if you don’t get as many comments some days as others, because…
  • You can’t possibly read ALL the poems everyone else posts, every single day, let alone comment on all of them. If you did, you’d never have any time to write your own! So don’t expect everyone else to read or comment on yours.
  • Don’t be too critical of the offered prompts if they don’t work for you; remember that someone has put time and effort into providing them for you each day. If you don’t like them, invent your own.
  • You will tire as the month wears on, and towards the end, writing poetry will feel like a slog. Creating thirty new poems in thirty days doesn’t sound like a big deal at the beginning… but if you’ve never tried it – believe me, really, it is.
  • As you post your final poem you’ll feel relief and elation in equal measure, but also a certain sadness that NaPoWriMo is over for another year.

Please feel free to add more… and THANK YOU to everyone for reading my poetry.

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Fasten your seat belts…

So NaPoWriMo takes off for another year. Thirty poems in thirty days is the destination, and each one will appear here, on my blog. At what time of day exactly, I have no idea; based on last year’s experience, some days the muse will arrive promptly, others she’ll wander off into the bars and duty-free, and completely lose track of time amongst the perfume and handbags. But after several desperate calls over the PA, she’ll eventually turn up, running towards me at the last minute, breathless and apologetic, ready to take her seat just before the door closes…

Please bear in mind that the stuff I’ll post will inevitably be first-draft quality, with all the imperfections that go along with that state. So don’t be too harsh in your judgement – the polishing comes later.

Doors to automatic and cross-check… off we go!

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NaPoWriMo 2013 draws nigh…

Goodness, how time flies. It’s hard to believe almost a year’s passed by since I took the plunge and signed up for National Poetry Writing Month. That one decision to commit to writing a poem a day for a whole month made such a difference, not least introducing me to a community of wonderful, supportive poets, with many of whom I’ve since become firm friends. After NaPoWriMo, said friends also provided encouragement for me to read my poetry in public, something I’d never have dreamed of doing otherwise, and offered all sorts of advice about how to go about getting work published.

To cap it all, I recently had the good news that one of my poems has been accepted for the anthology Best of Manchester Poets Vol. 3. My first ever poem in print. It also happens to be one of the poems that had its origins in NaPoWriMo 2012…

I’d be daft not to do it again, wouldn’t I? Why not join me?

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