I’ve been tagged by:
Shawn at: http://shawnbird.com/ (a most lovely author of poetry and YA novels. Check her out!)
Shawn has invited me on a blogging tour to talk about my writing process. I feel like my process is evolving as I have been learning, so I am answering the questions again and elaborating more.
I enjoy learning how others write so I can get clues and improve on my own writing process. I can’t wait to hear what works for you!
1.) What am I working on at the moment?
I am currently working on writing my dad’s biography. He has always been a closed man. I call him a “vaulted” man. He has Alzheimer’s and is a recovered alcoholic. Through various techniques, like Poetry Therapy and my education experience, I am learning more about my dad and developing a relationship with him.
In addition, I’m developing my poetry style. Usually I jot down phrases of things I notice and put together throughout the day. I have a small journal I carry sometimes…I also have that great app “Colornote” which allows me to jot a note any time, any place I have my sweet little phone. I love that app! Sticky notes for my phone…awesome.
Reading the poetry of amazing poets here in the blogging world has inspired me to write more and add juiciness to my work. I know I’m still clunky at times, and sometimes not as thorough following to the end of a thought, but I do feel I’m getting better. What I’ve learned from others is that daily practice, multiple poems a day, a sprinkling in of quotes and essays, assist me greatly in working it out and keeps the muse going as well.
I’ve always loved writing and getting to know people, so the blogging world has been perfect for me. and keeps me writing. I used to do a blog about ten years ago and really enjoyed the community. I also aspire to do a variety of other book projects that are budding for me.
2.) How does my work differ from others of its genre?
My current writing shows a budding relationship between a daddy and daughter, after 50 years, putting aside all the years of heartache and hard roads and differences from living with an alcoholism to forge a new relationship, leading from a soberly life. I’m also hoping to offer ways for others to assist their loved ones in living a more quality life if they have Alzheimer’s.
It began with curiosity and a series of questions from a book about a Father’s Legacy and has developed into something more through a willingness to explore and trust. It’s not an easy road, but it has its rewards. There is much tenacity involved.
3.) Why do I write what I do?
My dad’s biography began as an adventure to gather some family history and seeking to know him better as a person. Throughout my life, my dad revealed very little of himself unless it had to deal with the weather or fishing or other activities as part of his outside world. I found some questions in a book that daddy allowed me to ask which opened a door for us. Through a lot of patience and tender loving care of my daddy’s feelings and life, he began to trust me enough to work on building his biography. Through the encouragement of a dear friend, I went from a 3 page essay to taking on the writing of a biography. Writing this way is a challenge and an adventure, but I’m truly enjoying the journey!
Each day brings about new discoveries and delights, and I am finding out how we are alike. (And many ways I’m glad we are not alike..hee hee)
It’s also been fun to discover ways to access my dad’s memories through poetry and music and patience at getting the uglies out first so he can concentrate on what is meaningful to him.
His words on my last trip were that “You gave me back my life, thank you.” No, dad I thought to myself, I just listened. Everyone just wants and needs to belong.
4.) How does my writing process work?
Because my dad is a vaulted man and has Alzheimer’s, it’s a delicate thing to gather information and to write about his life, especially linearly. Life stories don’t come to him that way. Often times I will get the same stories over again, but with new details, so I have to really be on my toes. And there are some stories, I can’t seem to access yet. So, I’ve developed a system of interviewing him daily and taking notes and saving them in folders by category so as to access them later.
I have a living, breathing outline for my book. As I discover things about my dad that are important to him or make vital, meaningful connections about his life, I revise it. So my book is always “evolving” in a really good way!
If you have questions, please fire away!
My main advice to a writer is just write! Get up everyday and just do it. :0).
I would love to know what you do.
Here are some people I am tagging.