Tag Archives: Debbie Ridpath Ohi

Poetics Serendipity

7:46 a.m. — San Antonio

listening to The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald sung by Gordon Lightfoot

Hello, all. Happy Guy Fawkes. NaNoWrimo-ers, you should be settling into your stride. Let’s see what I have of interest.

1] At first, I wasn’t sure whether to post this. After all, it’s just results of surveys. Then I realised I was reading through the results, and I don’t participate in NaNoWriMo. The website, Galley Cat, has published what they term an infographic by the team at Stop Procrastinating that features the results of “A Survey of 2000 NaNoWriMo Writers”. One of the reasons I kept reading is that they have made the graphic attractive and easy to inhale quickly.

2] The Writer’s Circle is a wonderful resource. One of the things they do is find lists such as words used to describe hair. They found the list at a website titled Writing With Color. If I could have found this list there, I would have given you a direct link. I searched, really I did. I’ll give you the link to TWC’s Facebook page instead.

3] This last is an essay by poet Audré Lord, posted on the website On Being. ‘Poetry is Not a Luxury‘ discusses why women need poetry. I rather think men need it for many of the same reasons.

4] Courtesy of the always amusing Debbie Ridpath Ohi

nanowrimo ohi2

See you Tuesday for a prompt and Thursday for more links.

Happy writing, everyone.

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Posted by on 05/11/2015 in poetry, writing


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Poetics Serendipity

7:37 a.m. — Atlanta

listening to Seals & Crofts singing Hummingbird [thought of you, Hannah!]

Hullo, everyone. Anyone else feeling enh? I suspect it’s a September thing. It made choosing links more difficult. I kept looking at things I had put aside and to each my brain said, Enh. The result may be odd.

1] The first offering can be an easy chew, like a gummie bear, or a hefty chew, like a steak. The article addresses the point that: the publishing industry that we talk about, when we talk about the thing that is existentially threatened in the digital age, is not the same thing as the book. It is one of those articles where I start to skim and then go back and then go back again and settle in to read. That article for which I have given you the link is the gummie bear, ‘The Swirl and Gurgle‘, by Mark Lane.

Lane, in turn, gives us a link to the steak, an essay by Richard Nash, ‘What Is the Business of Literature?’ For all of us concerned with publishing, the essay is an important one, but if your brain screams when it sees it, Lane gives a very digestible short version.

2] I haven’t put up places to submit, more than a couple of times. I may change that… Meanwhile, Revolution House has an intriguing annual issue, which they call their Resurrection Issue. The poems [flash fiction, creative non-fiction] that they are looking for are the ones you had published and then the magazine sank from sight. What a great idea. I often bemoan a couple of my poems where the e-zine not only stopped, but left no archives. Revolution House wants to give our work a second life.

The link is to their submissions page. The main website is undergoing a make-over, but they have links to the genres and their guidelines, as well as to back issues. Check it out. Then start Googling lines from poems that you are sure have disappeared!

3] The second site comes from my son who knows I collect such things. The article is titled: ‘The Ultimate Guide to Writing Better Than You Normally Do‘ by Colin Nissan. One of the things I love, aside from the intelligent advice, is the layout, which makes each admonition look bite-size, therefore accomplishable. The title says it all. Oh, and ignore the little bit that precedes the main article.

4] Need a laugh? How about laughing at ourselves and taking a poke at grammar? I thought so. Debbie Ridpath Ohi is such a tonic.

published with the permission of Debbie Ridpath Ohi

published with the permission of Debbie Ridpath Ohi

Enjoy and I shall see you tomorrow for the week’s roundup of prompts; next Tuesday for a prompt; and next Thursday for links and stuff.

Happy writing, everyone.


Posted by on 19/09/2013 in poetry, writing


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Poetics Serendipity

7:41 a.m. — Atlanta

listening to Dumbarton’s Drums sung by the Corries

Hello there, everyone. We’re almost there. You just have to get through a day, or two, and it’s the weekend. We don’t usually do anything particular on Labour Day weekend, but we have close friends in Ohio. Ohio has proved too hard to get to, so far, so a compromise halfway point turns out to be Berea, Kentucky. Berea recently made the list of top 17 most hippy cities in the United States. I can’t wait. Meanwhile, we have links.

1] A brief post: How I Came to Embrace Goodreads by Patrick Ross. I know, two weeks in a row of Patrick seems like too much goodness and I considered adding this post to my list of future stuff, but not a day goes by that someone isn’t now my friend, or following me, on Goodreads, despite the fact that after my initial listing of books, years ago, when it started, I have done absolutely nothing. And still they come. Patrick’s viewpoint gave me pause, so you can read it, too.

2] I think I mentioned The Poetry Circle when it began. I join all the writing networks, in order to see what’s happening. I don’t actually do anything at any of them — no time — but I like to keep abreast of the poetry world and this is one way to do it. When you land on this page, you’ll find a clean, clear listing of the things incorporated in the group, on the left. Check them out if you are looking for a writing group.

3] TED talk [Yay!]: Actually, I’m posting the TED blog post titled, ‘The power of daydreams: 4 studies on the surprising science of mind-wandering‘ but the talk is part of it, so hey! Interesting material on wandering minds and as most of us confess to some degree of it, at least read the post.

4] Debbie Ridpath Ohi time!

Mimi's Book Purge

Mimi’s Book Purge

Used with permission from Debbie Ridpath Ohi at

I will see you tomorrow for the roundup; Tuesday for a borrowed prompt; and Thursday for links and stuff.

Happy writing, all.


Posted by on 29/08/2013 in poetry, writing


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Poetics Serendipity

8:22 a.m. — Atlanta

listening to silence courtesy of my aunt and uncle leaving after a two-day visit

Hullo, all. The visit was lovely but when there is no downtime… I have no brain, not even for idle chit-chat, so let’s see what I have in the bank.

1] It has been a while [I think] since I posted a Judy Lee Dunn article. She was one of the first to help me with what my blog has become. I follow her pretty religiously, along with her husband, who is a WordPress guru. The article includes two Debbie Ridpath Ohi comic strips. Right there it’s worth seeing. However, we also get a discussion about ‘Confronting Fear: The Elephant in the Writer’s Office. While we have read articles on this topic, I try to post links when I think something has been expressed well, or has a fresh slant.

2] This choice of mine is long, very long, as a read. The first time I read it, I thought: No way I’ll do anything but skim. I had to restart and read more carefully. Today I looked at it and thought: No way they’ll do anything but skim and as I thought that, I found myself rereading with attention. That made me decide to offer you ‘The Start: Writing Your Own Poem,’ even with the knowledge that most of us have written poems. There is even a prompt included. Ah, that got your attention.

I include the author’s credentials as they are impressive and lend weight to what she writes. ‘The author is Dr. Judy Rowe Michaels, poet in residence and English teacher at Princeton Day School in Princeton, New Jersey, as well as a poet in the schools for the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation.The author of two books on teaching poetry and writing, both published by NCTE (Risking Intensity and Dancing With Words), she has also two collections of poems, The Forest of Wild Hands and, most recently, Reviewing the Skull.’

3] Now for some exercise, for your fingers that is. I found a wonderful illustrated tutorial on creating your own miniature book. My immediate thought was presents, so I’ll say no more and let you go look.

I shall see you tomorrow for the roundup; next Tuesday for found poems; and, next Thursday for links, or discussion.

Happy writing, everyone. I’m going to sit and stare at a wall.


Posted by on 15/08/2013 in poetry, writing


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Your Serendipity @ Thursday Thoughts

7:46 a.m. — Atlanta

bopping to Play Something Sweet (Brickyard Blues) with Three Dog Night

Hullo, all. A happy Valentine’s whether you are a lover or a hater. Let’s find you some fun stuff [vital noun, covers a multitude of possibilities, and tells you I have not had my second cup of coffee):

1] I read the first find a year ago. Our friend The Rag Tree posted a link last March to a wonderful New Zealand blog of The International Institute of Modern Letters. In particular his link is to New Zealand poet Brian Turner and the best list of tips for writing poetry I have found. Think of his list as poetry commandments.

The blog, modernlettuce, says about itself ‘Here we aim to post exercise ideas from our workshops, along with occasional thoughts about writers and writing’.

Two for one!

2] How Plateauing Occurs: Pace vs. Potential. How about that for a title?! I found the article interesting to read, as we all hit plateaus. The author’s P.S. states:  All this nonsense about how we ‘can’t remember names, can’t draw, can’t cook, can’t dance, can’t write’ is just that: nonsense! It’s a life that’s being lived at pace, not potential. The plateau is a great place to be for most of the time, but sometimes, go up in the mountains. It’s heady up there! This serves as the author’s thesis, as well.

The blog, Write to Done, is one I follow, for articles like this one,  although it focuses on writing generally, rather than poetry. Their Chief editor, Mary Jaksch, says: Write to Done is a place where we can all grow as writers. It’s  a place to share some of what we’ve learned as writers, with new (and experienced) writers looking to improve their craft and their art. That’s what Write To Done is about, at its core: the craft and the art of writing.

Again, two for one. I might stop while I am ahead, on the theory that you have articles to read plus web sites to explore. Something funny? 3]

when the muse strikes

when the muse strikes

“Used with permission from Debbie Ridpath Ohi at”

Laughing? Good.

4] Special Valentine’s entry: One last one, but this only works if you know Les Mis. Two lieutenants in the South Korean Air Force wrote, produced, and directed a parody in order to publicise a problem with having enough men to clear the air strips of snow. Watch the entire thing through the credits. It’s funny, clever, charming. Think of it: Les Mis as a battle against snow, love story and all.

I shall see you tomorrow for the prompts roundup; next Tuesday for a prompt; and next Thursday for more links, or any announcements which might appear.

Happy exploring and writing, everyone.




Posted by on 14/02/2013 in poetry, writing


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Your Serendipity @ Thursday Thoughts

7:52 a.m. — Atlanta

listening to Mumford & Sons — Google Play has their album Babel on sale for $3.99!

Well, I had a topic. Hello, all. I did. I had a topic, but when I looked for my notes, yesterday, they were nowhere to be seen. I saw them only a few days ago. They are in a finite item: my Thursday Thoughts notebook. Now they aren’t. That means a little tap dancing, and that would be why ViV’s suggestion of ‘Your Serendipity,’ as part of the title, is apt.

We’re going to pull from the grab bag, which means we might find things a couple of years old. Ignore dates; I will check that everything and everyone is still around, if needed.

1] We start with a link to an article Risk & Point of View, by Chicks Dig Poetry. This is a topic we all have some interest in. Whether that’s you, or not, the article is well-written and presented. The author states ‘But I think point of view is undervalued as a determinant of tension. The POV you choose helps shape the risks your poem can take‘. Sounds like you should read it, doesn’t it? Go on over.

2] Next, we have a link for the enjoyment of your ear and eye, 10 spoken word performances, folded like lyrical origami gathered by TED talks. There’s quite a variety, but aside from enjoyment, I find these performances helpful to me for how they play with the sound of words, and the repetition of sounds. It doesn’t even matter whether I like, or don’t like, a performance. I can still learn something about writing poetry.

3] A visit to our regular, The Rag Tree, is third. The premise of his article is that ‘Language in many respects is identity, the way that we think; it defines us in the world. And speaking a language is power, the ability to communicate, to become involved in community‘. He gives two more reasons for learning a new language, but the bonus is his links to a couple of Scottish Gaelic sites. I found myself over at the BBC one, dutifully repeating phrases and feeling delighted. Gaelic is a language that has baffled me and I don’t much like baffled. Now I can learn some rudiments.

4] The fourth article, found on the site Write to Done, is an elucidation of how writers can use Google+ to their benefit. The author states, ‘In this post, I’ll be outlining the top tactics for writers to use Google+ to brand themselves, reach their target audience, and create an author platform‘. I can hear people rearing back. Trust me here. Under each business-like heading I found things that apply to groups and individuals of all kinds, whether they plan to post poetry, publish poetry, talk about poetry, critique poetry, or read poetry. Check it out.

5] Visit Debbie Ridpath Ohi for a laugh. I chose a specific that many of us can relate to: Where the hell is my muse? Sob.

Okay, gang. Happy browsing and writing.


Posted by on 24/01/2013 in poetry, writing


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