Books Every Writer Should Read


Over the years I have acquired a number of books on writing which I have enjoyed reading. Anyway here are a few of the books that I have found myself coming back to again and again and they have helped me shape my attitude towards my writing (when I am actually writing); and I believe they would help anyone who picked up or downloaded these books. 1)      Plot & Structure by James Scott Bell:...

How To Write A Sestina


The Sestina is another favourite of mine. It seems to me that the formula, though a little complicated, guarantees a certain depth and etherealness that you may not have otherwise been able to achieve on your own. The Sestina is about repetition. It is a conversation, a telling, a retelling, an obsession with an object, a person, a situation. It is definitely a poetic form that you should try at...

Diary of a Penniless Frustrated Artist


“If you want to really hurt your parents, and you don’t have the nerve to be gay, the least you can do is go into the arts. I’m not kidding. The arts are not a way to make a living. They are a very human way of making life more bearable. Practicing an art, no matter how well or badly, is a way to make your soul grow, for heaven’s sake. Sing in the shower. Dance to the radio...

How To Give Criticism – The Sandwich Effect


You have just read (or listened) to someone’s story, poem, or idea and you think it is a load of crap! Ok, hopefully you don’t think that (if you do, this article is not really for you, just smile at the individual and walk away). No, in this scenario, you can appreciate the piece; but perhaps you see a flaw in the plot, the delivery, the writing…and you have no idea how to pass this message on...

How To Write A Sonnet


The sonnet was the first poetic form that I experimented with, so it holds a special place in my heart. Shakespeare clearly loved the sonnet form, as it was the only type of poem that he seemed interested in writing. He wrote so many, he didn’t bother to name them – they got numbers instead.   There are only FOUR things that you need to know about the sonnet form If you are writing a...

The Freedom of Poetry in Form


Poetry is an art. Some of my friends have asked what the point or value of poetry is, which is interesting as these are the same people who are moved by certain songs; but for some reason, poetry is a distant and unapproachable concept to them. So, what is poetry and why is it important? Poetry is that art form that can capture a singular emotion. I feel a poem has achieved its objective when a...

How To Judge A Book By Its Cover


The other day, I was talking to someone; gently explaining why their book cover was not achieving its most obvious objective – drawing in the potential reader. His response to my eloquent yet non-critical feedback was a “You shouldn’t judge a book by its cover.” I was stunned; speechless even, until I found myself, “Perhaps we shouldn’t but the truth is we do.” However, it later occurred to me...

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February 2019
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