Wednesday, October 28, 2015


In my last post, I whined about having too many irons in the fire. I'm happy to report that I finished one of my projects. Last night I presented the poetry lesson on word-art at the Nebraska Writers Workshop. Here is the piece I created using the knowledge from the lesson.

Raven Tribe Raven Tribe
Ancient sea warriors
Canoes with sixty paddlers
Sixty Great canoes
Great canoes carved from single red cedars
Sixty canoes with sixty paddlers
3000 Raven warriors
3000 Raven warriors
Pike adorned Canoes
Pikes for the heads of my enemies
Their women and children my slaves
Two hundred thousand moons
My ancestors came
Over the water from the setting sun
Sixty-eight-thousand seasons
My ancestors came
Across the icy sea
Filling the red cedar forests
Trading with the eagle tribe
the sea lion warriors
the river people
My totems tell the story
The mother of my mother's mother
Mother From Inside the Glacier
From the Direction of the North Wind
My people came
Filling the islands
Do not resist
I strike with honor
With the outside Edge of a Branch
You will taste bitter water
I will burn your bones
I will paint your skull
with Raven tribe symbols
With symbols of the raven people
I will paint your skull
Paint your skull

That's one project down, 285 to go.
Next up, synopsis.

Friday, October 9, 2015

Too Many Irons in the Fire

Welp, I did it again. I sail along on a work in progress, Spencer Murdoch and the Island of Magic, while thoughts of other projects I want to write bounce around in my head. Then, I dabble on the other works and everything slows down. It's not the first time I've done this. I jus' cain't help it. Inspired by fellow poet and local, world-travelled professor David Prinz Hufford, rather than finishing the final edits on my latest novel, I wrote a Shakespearean sonnet. In preparation for an upcoming presentation on word art at the Nebraska Writers Workshop, I've delved deep into indigenous northwest art, particularly Tlingit and Haida. This highly stylized art form is poetry without words. Using inspiration from Michigan artist Keemo, my current favorite, I'm going to insert words into a Haida inspired painting.
Not only have I done numerous sketches for the painting's design, I've also gathered information for the poem, which I think will also be Tinglit and Haida inspired. The raven is and essential in their culture, so I almost feel compelled the add some kind of Edgar Allen Poe influence. Maybe even a little Lewis Carrol. I have a wonderfully energetic writer Annie Douglas Lima asking for an in depth interview. She has many good writing questions. I'll see what I can do to answer her. I'm writing a script about a high school class discussing TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD. And there's that pesky new round of query letters waiting to be written. Oh, and I took time out to write this blog just for you.
Speaking of you.
Do you ever get too many irons in the fire?
How does it affect your production?
Or, are you one that finishes a project before moving on?