Tag Archives: wordpress

Poetics Serendipity

8:44 a.m. — Atlanta

listening to The Smothers Brothers singing Marching to Pretoria

and recovering from the momentary heart attack I had when I thought WordPress was going to force me to use their new format. No, they just moved the switch back button to the bottom of the page. Hello, all. Yes, yes, it is already Thursday and I have links for you to explore.

1] The first is a place to submit VERY short pieces. The subject line in the email I got from the writers’ resource thing I use, says: Do you tweet? Get your 140 character stories/poems published in Lime Hawk.

The email elaborates: Attention, Tweeters! Can you tell a full story in 140 characters or fewer? Lime Hawk’s new Weekly Word writing prompt offers you a chance to get straight to the point and publish short stories, poems, or sweet little ditties on

Each week, Lime Hawk will pick a word as a prompt. Interpretation is wide open. Tweet what you come up with @limehawkarts. We’ll pick our favorites and publish them on Lime Hawk.

The first word: COCOON

We can’t wait to see what tiny web you spin.

I was interested and checked out the site. Very nice. Visit. Non-tweeters, there are submissions opportunities for all.

2] I would reblog this next one but then I get thrown off as to what else I can write in a reblog. Jeffrey Levine [if his name sounds familiar he is founder, Editor-in-Chief and Publisher of Tupelo Press and I have posted links to his articles before] is giving us a workshop on preparing a manuscript. That’s what his articles amount to.

On Making the Poetry Manuscript — New and Improved, Part 1 gives us some background on  the Tupelo Press Writing Conferences. Levine tells us, ‘It’s important to me (and might be to you) to distinguish what Tupelo Press Writing Conferences are about, because great writing is at the heart of any successful publishing career, and because (as you’ll see further on) if you’re to make your manuscript a more successful swimmer in a sea of manuscripts, there are things you need to know.’

He ends the article with an update of the first tip from his original post on putting together a manuscript, from three years ago. Levine will continue updating his tips and, that we don’t fall too far behind, I have included a link to this week’s article, On Making the Poetry Manuscript — New and Improved, Part II. Whether, or not, you plan to publish a manuscript, his tips are well worth reading.

3] I’ve given you plenty to read, so let’s finish with a Debi Ridpath Ohi comic for writers

I will see you tomorrow for prompt site close-ups; Tuesday for a prompt on Labours; and next Thursday for more links.

Happy Writing, all.
PS If the spacing is wonky, it’s because it has been giving me grief. My preview looks okay now [except this PS which I can’t get separated… sigh…] but I think it lies.



Posted by on 11/09/2014 in links, poetry, writing


Tags: , , , , ,

Poetics Serendipity

8:39 a.m. — Atlanta

listening to the inner tics of the central air [I have not gotten around to turning on the music — too many tabs open]

Hi! Ready to stop for a few minutes and go wandering with me? I read an interesting comment in one of the Facebook poetry groups I inhabit. The writer commented that there is no need to read most of the ‘Ten Ways to…’ articles that come out, because they all say the same thing. I have two arguments against that comment. One is that they don’t all say it in the same way and as we all have different brains, one person’s way of saying something about poetry, or work habits, or life, is going to strike us more than someone else’s. Two, I don’t know about your brain, but mine files and forgets, so I never pass up an article that is going to remind me how to get through something because not only will it remind me of things I want to keep to the fore, but the writers might have something new to say.

1] Hence, the first place I am sending you, Overcome Procrastination With These Easy Strategies, by Gail Brenner, a psychologist and writer. Most of us procrastinate. We know it. We admit it. We look at tips to make us not procrastinate. But, I don’t think I have read an article that takes us to the roots of our procrastination. Brenner outlines three possible reasons why we put off writing and posits that once we know why, we can take care of overcoming the problem ourselves. As she says To say you’re procrastinating means that you’re living smack in the middle of the land of “should.” And when has a “should” ever served anyone? In essence, you’re saying, “I’m doing this right now, when I should be doing that.” You’re putting yourself down and rejecting this moment as not good enough.

2] The second article appears on Carve Magazine‘s blog and is something that all of us who submit should read from time to time. It’s one of those ‘Oh, yeh’ articles. Mistakes Writers Make When Submitting to Literary Magazines, by Eva Langston, is thorough and even if some points seem obvious, my brain kept muttering ‘right, right…’. I’m guilty of a couple of the points, but if I don’t remind myself of that, chances are I won’t change my habits. Brain muttering: ‘must submit more and to online journals’.

3] For all of us image people, this next one is pure fun, but might also provide new sources of inspiration. News gives us Ten Illustrators to Follow Now and some of them are really cool. Cheri Lucas Rowlands introduces her finds with From sketches to digital art narratives, here’s a visual journey into the worlds of ten illustrators on And, what a journey. I spent time with all of them, some more than others, but enjoyed my immersion. Go play.

I shall see you Tuesday for a prompt and Thursday for more links. Happy Labour Day weekend to the U.S.ers among you.

Happy writing, all.


Posted by on 28/08/2014 in links, poetry, writing


Tags: , , , , ,

Poetics Serendipity

7:52 a.m. — Atlanta

listening to Simon Says by the 1910 Fruitgum Company

Hullo, all. Yep, I made it here. WordPress is offering us the choice of the old or the new, so I’ll keep showing up. Let me see what I have in the bag and get some of my first cup of coffee down. I slept in a bit.

1] Over at Write to Done, Jessica Baverstock gives us ‘How to Complete Every Writing Project You Start: Become a Completion Addict‘. She makes the point that we’re addicted to the intoxicating high of new ideas. As I look through my notebook at how many things I have started but forgotten when I moved to another something, she’s right. There is an excitement to starting a new poem, a something that gives new energy to us.

Baverstock presents short, simple steps to carrying out a little brain retraining so we’ll feel more in control of your goals and projects, instead of frantically jumping from one idea to another. You will also recognize and face your fears, a great way to keep them in check.

2] I enjoy WordPress articles [i.e. from WordPress, not articles that appear on WP] and have a couple saved for you. The first is Spring-Clean Your Blog in Five Easy Steps. [Hey, it’s almost spring in the lower portion of the globe] I never quite get around to cleaning out my blog, but if I have steps to follow, I am more likely to do at least a couple of things. Ben Huberman [one of my favourite WordPress writers] has five things you can do in the next ten minutes to see immediate results. Ten minutes, people. Let’s get out those brooms and dusters.

3] The second article from WP is Four Features to Publish Your Poems, by Cheri Lucas Rowlands. The features look interesting, but do mean we have to roll up our sleeves and try writing with the text editor [see tab upper right when you have a new post]. I know some of you already use it, but most of us… The features offered allow for some ease in getting a poem to look like a poem on our blogs, without turning ourselves inside out.

Now, off you go to clean, create and complete. I shall see you Tuesday for a potluck image prompt;and Thursday for links, more links.

Happy writing, everyone.


Posted by on 21/08/2014 in links, poetry


Tags: , , ,

Poetics Serendipity

7:47 a.m. — Atlanta

listening to Blood, Sweat & Tears singing Spinning Wheel [that got the blood going]

Hello, everyone. All good? Or, as good as can be? Good. Let’s explore. I have some fun [as in interesting and possibly useful] sites for us. Some of you may have seen a couple, if you see the same Facebook people I do, or are following Khara House, but these are sites that are good to have in the arsenal so I want to be sure.

1] I get the WordPress newsletter and this week’s focuses on three writing communities within WordPress. The choices run the gamut from straightforward — Today’s Author is an open, flexible community of writers focused on helping each other kick-start their pens (or keyboards) — to a creative approach within a creative community at Tipsy Lita book club on the Internet where you promote reading REAL literature (no shopping, vampires or shopping vampires allowed) and promote the consumption of alcohol while discussing said literature online.  New reading friends?  Check. Glass of wine? Check. Still in my yoga pants? Check. We’re good to go. — I mean, really, you’re not going to check that out? Writing along with reading along with alcohol along with wearing your favourite comfy. I am so there. In between are the Friday Fictioneers which I would join just because of the blogger’s admonition: If you can disable CAPTCHA, please for the sake of our writerly nerves, disable it. It’s frustrating to have to leave a DNA sample, your blood type and your shoe size  just to leave a comment. Aside from that, she leaves a photo prompt every Wednesday, and you know you like those. Go explore. That alone is fun.

2] This next site is fascinating. Have you ever wondered about the many poetry anthologies and contests that are out there? Wondered how to tell the on the level ones from the scams? I have this site bookmarked for a number of reasons and that is the primary one: Winning Writers featured content this week includes ‘Contests and Services to Avoid‘. Talk about eye-opening. [I just got caught by the title of another featured article, one on how to prepare a professional looking manuscript, with SAMPLES!] Again, go explore.

3] Many of you know Khara House, poet, teacher, blogger, editor and more! We follow her blog Our lost Jungle and her Submit-O-Rama Boot Camp Challenges with joy and mourn her occasional disappearances [it’s hard to remember bloggers have jobs and families and stuff, isn’t it?]. Her recent post ‘Behind Enemy Lines: Learning From the Editors,’ is short but chock-full of need to know advice on submitting.

That’s it. What’s that? Why didn’t I give you the URLs to the three writing communities? The post is WordPresses’ so I figured the courteous thing for me to do is to send you there. Besides, how many of you knew they had a newsletter?

I shall see you tomorrow for the roundup of prompts; Tuesday for our image prompt; and Thursday for the summer calendar [for real, this time].

Happy writing, all.



Enhanced by Zemanta

Posted by on 22/05/2014 in links, poetry, writing


Tags: , , , , ,

Poetics Serendipity

8:19 a.m. — Atlanta

no desktop = no music — I’ll be glad when the weekend is here and I can ask my husband to figure out the computer [he’s busy prepping for school to open. I haven’t the heart to ask him to tackle a computer problem when he arrives home]

Hullo, duckies! I know. I didn’t expect me to be here either. Amazing what a suddenly scheduled four hour water shut-down will do for one. The dishes are washed, I am washed, my hair is washed, a load of clothes is washing and I am galvanised, though not quite awake. One and a half hours to turn-off.

My bookmarks are, of course, on the other computer so today’s offerings are more various than usual.

1] For those who didn’t catch the video the first time around it’s a must; for those who did, it’s still a must, just to watch Ron Padgett, Rita Dove, and Sharon Olds [talk about a group of power poets], who take on “Breaking the Line, Breaking the Narrative” a discussion of, well, line-breaks. We get only five minutes of it, but it’s a fun five minutes. Padgett is humourous; Sharon Olds, not terribly articulate verbally, is hysterical in her method of getting across to us what she wants to say; I would follow Rita Dove anywhere. Her voice is poetry. The transcript can be found at, but I think you should watch and listen first, so sent you direct.

2] This second is for a narrower niche and has broader possibilities and uses than poetry alone. WordPress and Readmill have created a means by which you can highlight passages in books and PDFs you’re reading in Readmill and share them on your or Jetpack-enabled site. While I understand this has no application for many of us, I wondered if there were people following me, for whom this might be useful.

3] I found an unusual comment awaiting moderation. Its author says: ‘I did a complementary, more like supplementary, posting based on this exercise over on Bonespark.’. The exercise mentioned is last Tuesday’s exercise on colour. I thought you might enjoy seeing what the supplement consists of. Meanwhile, you can wander the site, as long as you are there.

4] Time for my favourite essayist. David Marshall writes On Noodling. Tell me you can resist. Here’s his conclusion: Be relentlessly yourself or run away from yourself—you become stagnant either way. Look for a way to incorporate experimentation, you make what you learn a part of you. The post is for artists of all kinds, those who paint their words and those who write their visions.

I shall see you tomorrow for the roundup. Yay! Also, next Tuesday for a mystery prompt [mostly because I haven’t chosen something, yet]; and next Thursday for some more serendipity. For the many new people who joined us, this summer, you may also send in topics you would like me to take on. Thursday is for anything poetry related.

Happy writing, all.


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


Tags: , , , , , ,

Your Serendipity @ Thursday Thoughts

8:21 a.m. — Atlanta

Well, hi there, everyone. We have a grab bag of stuff today.

1] A little love for WordPress, by way of Amy Barlow Liberatore, at Sharp Little Pencil:

Quick note:  I’ve been quite vocal (well, I AM an activist, right?) about the “auto-check” option that WordPress foisted on us without notice, flooding our (and our followers’) email boxes because “Keep me posted on follow-up comments via email” was now automatically checked. Complaints flew this way and that; I posted a series, including a “fix” for the “glitch.”

Apparently, many WordPress followers made their voices heard, and together (go, WPbloggers) we AFFECTED CHANGE. This was a wonderful, peaceful activist movement.  Y’ALL DID IT AND Y’ALL ROCK!  Next time you feel a call to action, take it.  You’ll be amazed at what happens.  As Margaret Mead said, “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.”  Amen, ma’am.

Me, here. Things do happen, if we make noise.

2] I am tossing around a possible summer format for the Tuesday Tryouts. The following came about through a conversation with Hannah. Next Tuesday, I will post a list of enough prompts to take us through August. You get to see what is in the mix ahead of time. If you are traveling, you can pick and choose which exercises you want to do and write and post when you are able.

It doesn’t matter what poem in response to which exercise is posted when. You might mention which exercise your poem is in response to. I will repeat the list each Tuesday, with a focus on one of the prompts. You may post your poems whenever you like. If you have written an acrostic, and that week I have focused on cinquains, don’t fret, post. If I have already offered an acrostic focus, post there, whatever makes your life easier, for the summer [after that all bets are off, again]. Because it is summer [for most of us] and many of us are moving about, I will be delving into past exercises and repeating the light and easy ones, but adding a twist — we can’t have things that easy.

Does this make some kind of sense? Do tell me what you think I am saying, as that is often not what I mean to say!

3] Cool apps to play with — check these out: Sticky Notes. Google it and you can find applications for the ipad, android, windows 7, mac… If you want to see what it looks like and missed Barbara’s post, go here. I have used it and it is fast and easy. Skitch. This is an annotation application, which makes my heart go pitty-pat. I have found it for the android, mac, and ipad. Google it. Last, is a text layout tool. Check Hannah‘s go at it. Some of your security programs might squawk, but it is clean. I am cavalierly sending you off to Google for the first two, because I don’t know what platform you will want it for, if you do want it.

4] As you all know, there are a ton of articles posted on creativity, writer’s block, and accessing your inner whatever. I am giving this link because I thought the article particularly interesting. One of my side interests is anything to do with brain studies [you can tell?]. The posting ‘Four Ways to Hack into Your Mind‘ comes at creativity based on recent brain studies. When I checked the link a second time, the blog Write to Done appears to be having connection problems. I have left this in anyway, in the hopes the problem clears up. If not, I’ll repost later.

5] Check out a posting from The Rag Tree on supporting our local poets.

6] Finally, check out the Underground New York Public Library. Way cool and great fun.

Have fun with these. I may pull Thursdays for the next three months — something has to go on holiday. However, if you have an announcement you want, or need, to get out to the group, let me know. I’ll work it.

See you tomorrow for the roundup of prompts; next Tuesday for… well, it depends what you say in comments on the proposed, possible, summer format; and next Friday for the Freeforall, again.

Happy writing, all.



Posted by on 31/05/2012 in poetry, writing


Tags: , , , , , ,

WordPress Rant @ Your Serendipity

7:51 a.m. — Atlanta

Hello, all. Welcome to Wordbook, or is that Facepress? I am a fairly placid sort, but one of the things that ticks me off is when a large-scale decision affecting my day-to-day interactions is made behind my back, especially when it appears to be an unpopular decision. WordPress’s latest move with comment follow is strongly reminiscent of the many Facebook ambushes that have taken place. While Facebook seems to be mellowing, WordPress is gearing up.

When I started with WordPress a couple of years ago, I loved everything about it and found the people who ran it to be friendly and helpful and apparently truthful. That appears to have gone by the wind. Many of you have been affected by their latest move and have found their inboxes filled with emails from the different blogs you follow. For context, we go to Amy Barlow Liberatore, over at Sharp Little Pencil, who writes:

Sorry, poem later – first, help for ALL my WordPress buddies!

We have located where that sneaky unemployed blockhead GWB hid the comment box check that has everyone on WordPress steamed.

On your Dashboard, left column, click “Settings.”
Under “Settings” menu, click “Discussions.”
On “Discussions” page, scroll WAY, WAY down… to just above Avatars section. You’ll find some checked boxes, including “Allow: Follow Comments.” NOTE: This has been changed since Amy’s efforts  to help, to: Show a ‘follow comments’‘ option in the comment form”.

Uncheck that box.

Nobody really follows someone else’s comments, in my experience. But clicking this means that option (if someone DOES want updates on a comment they made) will disappear. That just means if they are hungry for your feedback, they will take the time to come back to your blog. Never happened to me because when there is a juicy comment, I copy my response to a personal email to the commenter and we continue the discussion there.

Hope this helps. And, as someone says, at least we don’t have those damned illegible CAPTCHAs. COPY THIS POST OR FORWARD MY URL TO EVERYONE WHO USES WORDPRESS… that is, if you want to! Peace. I need a nap now. Love to all, Amy

Margo back. Things have revved up a bit with WordPress claiming that tons of people have commented how much they love the new system. I am finding this hard to believe. Amy has sent out an email which some of you [who follow her] will have received. She suggests that if we feel strongly, we leave a comment. I have just done so. I have no hope of WordPress rescinding. Big corporations rarely do, but I feel better.

Will I leave WordPress? Unfortunately, no. I like WordPress better than Blogger, where I started my blogging. It suits me. What I may do is move out and start my own website, something I had somewhere in my future.

Whew! If you are still here, thank you for the indulgence. If you have questions about this, ask. Comments, of course… even if you think this is the neatest WordPress action since sliced bread.

Let me leave you with something happy: Curio issue #6 is out, so take yourself over to read familiar and unfamiliar poets, at Joseph’s and Tessa’s lovely journal.

I will see you tomorrow for the week’s roundup of prompts; next Tuesday for a prompt on ‘what is self?‘; and next Thursday, for whatever comes along.

Happy writing, all.


Posted by on 17/05/2012 in writing


Tags: , , , , ,

  • creative commons license