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Day One! Hope everyone is having fun so far. If you are participating in NaNoWriMo you are keenly aware of what today signifies. Of course, we are still coming down from a national sugar buzz (actually, I think today is National Eat Candy Day) but for many of us crazy folk, this past weekend/week/month has been all about preparing for “30 Days of Literary Abandon.” Last night, I was watching the time zones count down and I realized that I was somehow set to Pacific time. I wouldn’t have been able to update for 3 hours. Glad I caught it, though I still was on when the West Coast hit midnight. It was like NaNoNewYear’s! So we are all in now, and the fun is only beginning.

So, the good news is, I read over last night’s (this morn’s?) 2000 words and I still like them. I know that a lot of NaNoDieHards say I should not read back or proofread, but um, sorry. If I don’t feed the Inner Editor, she gets mean. I have set myself a daily 2000 word/day goal and I am determined to use NaNo to get into the very good habit of writing every day. I am still writing today, so I will already be ahead. We have to drive to Ohio for Thanksgiving and it would be very nice if I was past 50K by the 25th. Though I do love the rush of the final two day catch up. :)

I liked Nicole Humphrey’s idea to taper down the writing so you can end on Day 30 with only 1 Word. When we start NaNo we often have been holding back the writing flow, so it all comes out in a rush. Then we hit Week 2… Some folks write towards 100,000 words which is closer to an actual novel length. [BTW: 50K is pretty short for a novel unless it is middle-grade or some genre paperbacks.] I am not that ambitious this year. But I will win! :D

I am participating in the NaNoBlogger blog hop and will be visiting every single one of those blogs, at least once! My favorite part of NaNo is the connections we make. I can write alone anytime. So, I welcome visitors, writing buddies and cheerleaders! I am going to blog about NaNo, but not every day. I will be on Twitter for word sprints and pep chats.

I am also using the Beta version of Scrivener for Windows, so I need time to learn that program.  I studied their tutorial and demo last week, but did not write in it until last night. Before midnight, I made an outline, using their cool corkboard feature, and laid out the chapters as I envision them. Then I was ready for Chapter One. So far, I like the program. I have been hearing praises of Scrivener from writers who are Mac people for a while now. I was very excited when I heard they were going to have a Windows version available next year. If you want to test it out during NaNo they have a Beta download. All winners of NaNoWriMo will get 50% off the final version in January, which makes writing 50K worth it, imo. But using the Beta version is fun. I am fastidious about backing up, ever since a nasty incident with a college thesis paper. They want us to report bugs and I will be sending a note about the ‘spelling’ feature they have which is very quirky. I know, I know, I am not supposed to be editing…. It’s a sickness, really.

I leave you with a musical interlude. I love the many other creative projects WriMos produce and this was one of my favorite things last year. Write on, y’all!

When I signed up to write about my favorite banned book over at @thmafi’s blog I was stumped. Which one to choose!?! There are simply so many! The obvious choice was the HARRY POTTER series, which as we know, I heart, and which tops both the list of best selling books for the past decade and the ALA’s list of most challenged books. But that’s too obvious. Basically, if people have not figured out yet that it is not a Satanic diatribe, well, God help them *roll eyes*

Of course, there are (sadly) many other fabulous books to write about. In its 50th year of publication, TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD is  a good example. It is often chosen as a classic Must-Read, and it has faced challenges since the beginning. But so have  a lot of others that I have enjoyed over the years: Gatsby, Catcher, Color Purple, GWTW, Rebecca,  Huck Finn (Twain’s response to Denver’s ban of his book is as amusing as most of his work :) ) and yes, Winnie-the Pooh.

Meanwhile, there are the books that make one say “WTH” ? the Dictionary!?! Captain Underpants? What about Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? (which I personally have avoided reading over and over and over for the past year…parents know what I’m sayin’) but which serves as an example of the ignorance that surrounds book banning. It was banned in Texas because the school board did not A.) Do their freaking research B.) Bother to read the book and C.) Think that it is possible for 2 men to have the same name, i.e. “Bill Martin”. Funnily enough, the author of this and dozens of other picture books is a Junior, so obviously there is more than one.

I often wonder if people who challenge books actually read them first. Or if they just want to promote their own agenda. Or if they really care about Freedom of Speech. There was a local news story about a woman who was challenging a book on a school’s Recommended Summer Reading List. NOT required, not even (most likely) expected. Just suggestions of books to choose from if a parent should decide to take their child to a library over the summer. Her beef was the junior picture book version of AN INCONVENIENT TRUTH by You-Know-Who. Now, I get that some people still think science and climate change are not real. Whatev. But I still think she just wanted to get on TV and try to push her (completely unsubstantiated) opinion.  If it is not required reading, then do not read it. Duh. Rant over.

So, I narrowed it down to Books I Have Read and Books Under Challenge Now. Yes, there have been a lot of books challenged and banned in the past. Some of them are on the list every year and are familiar to many readers. I am more concerned with the newer books that are being challenged and banned. Most of these are Young Adult books that are challenged for sexual references.

I think that to most young readers (and let’s face it–they are the citizens whose intellectual rights are challenged the most) books are an important source and outlet for information. I admit, I read books that my parents would not have approved. I also read books that they did approve and bought for me. I generally liked most of them. But part of growing, learning and becoming a functioning adult is  practicing critical thinking and developing your own mind. I would not want to keep my children from having all available resources or from pursuing their own happiness.

Young adults are going to learn about sex one way or another. If parents have not learned how to discuss it with them, if teachers are not able to teach non-abstinence facts, then teens will still learn about It. I would prefer the new-found knowledge be from a book, rather than from television or the Web. And I would rather their learning be done critically, showing all facets and points of view as most books do, especially books published as Kid Lit, instead of physically through clumsy trial-and-error which may lead to STDs, teen pregnancy and/or hours of crying into one’s pillow. (Or worse! Teen suicide is a bigger problem in this land than teen sex. There. I said it!) Also, as a writer who can only hope that one day she makes it to a Banned Books list, I want kids to read and I know that they are far more likely to read a book they are interested in, rather than an assigned book chosen by an adult. Personally, I think it is amazing and awesome that there are SOOO many books being published in the children and young adult market. End of the Book, pshaw!

So, I pondered it, read lists, looked on my own highly controversial bookshelves and I went to the best place to learn about books: The Library. One of the most beautiful facts of our country’s freedoms: we get free books. I spend a lot of time at the library and have a good dialogue with my librarians. The conversation we had about banned books (as she set up their display) was heartening. I learned that only one book has been challenged (in her knowledge) in our  400-year old, smallish, right-leaning county: AND TANGO MAKES THREE. {Follow the link for a post about that children’s picture book from the fabulous Booklady’s Blog.} The saddest thing about that challenge is it is NON-fiction. People want to ban facts. Grrr…

Finally, I opened the library’s print-out of this year’s Banned Books Week campaign and saw THE ABSOLUTELY TRUE DIARY OF A PART-TIME INDIAN by Sherman Alexie listed first. And I learned that it was banned, removed by a school board in Missouri this year and previously in Oregon among other challenges. I read this book, primarily because it was a National Book Award winner and one of the top recommended books for teen boys. I like sharing books with my son, ever since he was in utero. I read it, laughed, cried, laughed A LOT more and even learned a little (granted, I had some previous knowledge of the subject matter). Then I gave it to him and said “You have to read this” which was not an order, but as he knew, just a great suggestion.

The main reasons cited for banning TATDOAPTI are language, substance use, and sexual situations. I admit, I was keenly aware of giving my son a book that discussed masturbation, but I had a feeling he already knew about that. But sex, drugs and rock n’ roll aside, this book depicts a reality that many teens in this country experience daily. At the same time, it also depicts one that many people are not aware of or do not understand. I wanted my brilliant son to appreciate his education and just how good he’s got it.

The main character experiences obstacles, discouragement, and a whole lot of stress in order to pursue his education. Since birth, he had physical challenges, which required brain surgery. He is awkward and ridiculed and also brilliant and hilarious. His story is about making the most of what you can in your life no matter what problems you face. He actually walks miles to get to a school that can give him a better education. Alexie throws light on the difference between reservation schools and US public schools. He also details a bright boy’s struggle to find his place in two societies, neither of which fully accepts him. A student speaking out in support of the book said at the Stockton County, MO school board meeting

This book in a nutshell is my hope. It’s not about giving up. It’s about not letting people tell you you’re not worth it.

and she was completely ignored. The vote was 7-0 to ban it. I pray that does not cause her to lose hope. She and her peers need to know that their experiences and feelings matter, too. When young people are constantly told that their opinions and beliefs do not count, they begin to believe it.

Junior, the MC and narrator of “Absolutely True Diary” , is one of those teens and his story is worth reading. Yes, teens cuss, are exposed to substances, and think about sex too much. But they also try to find their talents, develop their abilities and dream of their futures. Why would we want to censor that?

(Subtitled: Let’s Just Say I was Hibernating and Leave It at That)

Yes, I have been neglecting my blogging duties, and I really have no excuse, except for the plethora of ones that arise daily. But, I refuse to delve into the personal griping that nobody really wants to read. I did mentally compose, at one point, a post entitled “Why I Will Never Be Super Mom” and it was hilarious, at least in my own mind, but nope, that never was completed either. C’est la vie…

However, I have not given up on the WIP and have been researching Everything You Need to Know About Agents But Are Afraid to Ask in order to be as well-prepared as possible for the day I have the (fully revised) final draft completed and ready to go. Meanwhile, I am really here to celebrate National Grammar Day and share their new anthem with anyone else who loves the English language.

I also want to recommend a lovely book I am reading which is perfect for us word nerds and fellow philosophers. The Elegance of the Hedgehog by Muriel Barbery was originally written in French and, fortunately, translated by Alison Anderson for those, like myself, who have neglected to keep up with the “language of love” since high school. I have not completed the novel, so cannot properly review it, but it has rave reviews all over the Web. (Why I only heard about it because of a Glue recommendation I cannot answer.) It is not a light read, but it is humorous, thought-provoking, and gosh darnit, deep. I think it should be required reading in Grammar 101 courses. Seriously, I was in stitches while reading a passage on the misuse of a comma (“I was not prepared for such an underhanded attack.”). The two female narrators (one young, one older) both have appreciation for the simple beauty of life, particularly the nuance of language. They also have a hard time hiding their disdain for the crowds around them who fail to see what they see. I can imagine that the author had some of these thoughts herself long before she put them in her characters’ voices. Par example:

The gifts of fate come with price. For those who have been favored by life’s indulgence, rigorous respect in matters of beauty is a non-negotiable requirement. Language is a bountiful gift and its usage, an elaboration of  community and society, is a sacred work….Society’s elect, those whom fate has spared from the servitude that is the lot of the poor, must, consequently, shoulder the double burden of worshipping and respecting the splendors of language. Finally, Sabine Palliere’s misuse of punctuation constitutes an instance of blasphemy that is all the more insidious when one considers that there are marvelous poets born in stinking caravans or high-rise slums who do have for beauty the sacred respect that is so rightfully owed.

To the rich, therefore falls the burden of Beauty. And if they cannot assume it, then they deserve to die.

Now, I do not necessarily want to encourage grammar snobs to take up arms and riot against the abuse of the comma, but she does have a point. I confess that I have a similar opinion reserved for those “pundits” who claim to speak for the masses, yet cannot speak clearly or correctly (and refuse to learn when to shut up), as well as certain political leaders (turned pundit and/or author) whose speeches are merely a string of colloquial phrases that together make no sense. But, I digress… ;)

No, the entire novel is not an ode to grammar. There are plenty of other topics covered including philosophy, Russian literature, French and Japanese culture, film and cats. So, really, there is something for almost everyone to appreciate, especially the story of an unlikely friendship, which is the true gem offered. I am eager to read more now, so I will stop here and wish you (all three of you :) ) a Happy Grammar Day and a good writing and/or reading weekend. I will return soon, I promise.

Just a quickie because I want to share this link with the world. I recently discovered a group on WordPress called ReadWritePoem (see sidebar) and I just jumped at the chance to join yet another network. Seriously, it seems to be a  good network for poets and poetry lovers to gather. I am still checking it out and setting up camp, but I love what I see so far. I may even get the gumption up to submit some poetry :)  So, then I followed a link to a blog because the name “I Was Born Doing Reference in Sin” made me literally LOL, and I was fortunate to read the newest post called Why Do I Write from a poet named Arisa White, which is what I want to share. Definitely some very good reasons there i.e:

It is truly, the times when I feel safe. Free to take risk, to emote, and to be led by imagination without fear.

I believe we all have our own reasons, and some are more personal than others, but she has definitely summed up some of my own feelings. Hope you enjoy!

One of the wonderful things I have found in my wanderings is  a site called Write Anything right here on WordPress. I am actually surprised I have not seen them before.  Six writers from different genres, styles and countries take turns blogging about all things writing, including their own experiences and advice. I definitely recommend new writers check it out. I was drawn there on Wednesday by the catchy-titled post “Handling Rejection and Criticism” by Annie Evett. Each writer blogs a certain day, but Fridays are for us! As a creative writing exercise, Fiction Fridays offer readers a prompt and a place to share your results. This is my first participation, with the prompt being:

Start your story with a game of hide and seek.

They recommend writing for at least five minutes, without editing. As soon as I began, my daughter started a pots-and pans-band and then my mother called, and then…well, everything I do takes longer. And apparently my environment does contribute to my writing. Also, I still have that nagging constant editing thing going on. So, I already broke the “rules”…oh well. I know it is awkward to read, but I am trying to practice the second-person voice for a character in the incomplete NaNoNovel. So, please bear with me. It’s a quickie :)

Fiction Friday: Hide and Seek

You know in a way that you are taking advantage of the situation, but you cannot help mentally reveling in your own genius. You even give yourself extra points for insisting on adding the one-way film to the windows during last summer’s renovation. Brilliant. You can see them taking turns passing by, calling the only name they know you by, but they still have not found you. It has already found the others and now they’ve ganged up to find you. You’ve got five minutes, tops.

Leaning back with a sigh, you wash off the nagging guilt with a reminder, “It was their idea in the first place, I am doing nothing wrong.” It works as a mantra, echoing back from the tiles as if your conscience has its own public address system.

With eyes closed, you watch the colors dancing and try to focus on the sound of bubbles popping. The tenth cry of “Ready or not, here we come!” snaps you back to attention less than a minute later. That one was pretty close. Peeking again through the window, you are startled when you see It peering suspiciously in your direction. The tell-tale sloshing sounds louder than possible when you slide out of view. It echoes back, ominous in the sudden silence which you break with a laugh. Now you are just being ridiculous.

“But I may as well enjoy it while I can,” you tell the tiles, leaning back into the warmth again. Half a minute of bubbles is all you get to hear before the feet start thumping down the hallway. And you smirk, eyes still closed when they pound on the door.

“Mom, we know you are in there!” the nine-year-old is starting to sound just like you.

“Ready or not! Ready or not!” the other two are chanting. You can picture them jumping up and down behind her.

“Not!” you say, stretching your legs out and watching the suds slide trough the stubble. Maybe next time.

“Come on, Mother,” says the darling on the other side of the door. With another sigh, you lean forward and pull out the plug.

When you open the door, she is shaking her head, arms crossed, looking more like your mother and the twins are wrestling on the floor.

“We found you!” one of them squeals when he sees you standing in the doorway in your robe.

“What took you so long?” you ask with a smile, pulling your daughter into a big hug, while her brothers grab onto your legs.

“You’re It! You’re It!”

“Okay, then,” you say with another smirk, “You hide somewhere in the house, and I’ll go in my room and count to a million.” That should give you time to dress.





I’m struggling. I admit it. The only thing flowing out of me these days are low-paying online articles and that’s more like a trickle. I keep making deals with myself, that when I finish the income-producing work, then I can get creative. More often than not, though, I’m sapped after a day of kid rearin’ and service workin’. And I let myself get sucked into the online pleasure dome of social networks and blogs, etc. I admit I would rather read someone else’s great post than write my own mediocre one. Fortunately, I do find something worth seeing, and even learn a thing or two in my virtual escapades. I have been playing on Twitter more often, and definitely finding as many inspirations as distractions. And you know I like to share, because what is better than an excuse to procrastinate more? A: a reason to write, of  course :)

  • This link came across through someone’s tweet a few weeks ago and for some crazy reason appealed to me, so I saved it in my quick post sidebar (which has become something of a catchall for links and blog ideas.)…A post called 6 Tricks for Writing when You Don’t Feel Like It on Writer Unboxed which is a great collaborate blog for “genre” writers (btw, no offense, but I thought everyone wrote in some genre, but apparently that term has become common now for mystery/sci-fi/fantasy/etc writers)
  • One of the coolest developments born on Twitter are the tweet chats that are occurring regularly. Anyone can contribute or follow just by using the #(hashtag-yes, just like on the trending list, but better)… there are topics for just about everyone, including book chats (i.e. #followreader is mainly book bloggers and Tuesdays @ 7pm EasternTime is #TuesBookTalk) and writing chats like #writechat (Sundays 12-3pm PT), which is hosted by Writing Spirit who also has a very helpful and inspiring blog.
  • Speaking of hashtags, there are several writers can use, both to keep up with other writers and to keep oneself on track, including #writegoal, #amwriting and #writetip. I have found several new resources and blogs to read by checking out these lists. Warning, though, Twitter has been discovered by spammers, and they know how to use the tags too. I suggest going to interesting tweeters, then checking their actual blog/website link before adding them to your list. And do not hesitate to block obvious spammers. They deserve it.
  • If all else fails, I can ensure my place in literary culture simply by submitting a piece to the National Gallery of Writing. In conjunction with the National Day of Writing (October 20, 2009) this project is open for groups and individuals to contribute any form of writing (within specific limitations of course, this is sponsored by English teachers). Schools and classes are forming their own “exhibits” but submissions range from scientific essays and memoirs, to stories and poems. Frankly, some of the best pieces I have ever written were for English class, so maybe I should dust off one of those. :) Write on y’all!

I am sorry that I have been absent for so long (if anyone was looking)…Let’s just say that I hit a speed bump, not a block :) But I do know that the first rule of writing is: Sit Down and Start! and that if at first we don’t succeed, try, try…you get it. So, here I am tired, humbled and maybe a bit more determined. Today is the first day of the rest of my yadayada…
normal_book1jkrfanAnd what a great day in literary history it is! Joanne (K) Rowling was born today, July 31st and she also gave her famous protagonist the same birthday, so some people call this Harry Potter Day. I don’t know if they need their own holiday (?) but it is a good day to apply pen to paper and get back into the flow.
Personally, she is one of my inspirations as far as success stories and admiration of style and skill, as well as, darn it, personality. When I first discovered the Harry Potter books, I was a single mother, struggling through a bad separation and divorce, temporarily living at my parents and waiting tables while also trying to finish my degree and maintain a healthy relationship with my 5-year old son. My British, reading-teacher mother actually bought the books to read to him while I worked dinner shifts, but reading at bedtime was one of our Favorite Things, so one night I read a chapter to him, then could not stop after he fell asleep. I had to go back and start the wondrous journey all over. Despite being tired, stressed and a literature major for goodness sakes, I was enthralled. That was in 2001, the boy is 13 now, and we love all things Harry Potter.
I admit to being a bit of a fan, as in fanatic, when it comes to Rowling and her amazing Wizard World. Hearing her own story only cemented my obsession. {btw: if you have not yet seen the documentary A Year in the Life with JK Rowling, you can view it on the ABC site.  i cried. } She was at a low point in her life, divorced with a young child who depended completely on her and an idea for a story that apparently would not leave her head (a feeling I know well). I think that millions of people would agree with me when I say, “Thank God, she wrote it down.”
I believe that her story, both the fictional and the biographical one, epitomize the answer to the struggling writer’s question “Why write?”  A: You never know, it may just change the world.

ADDED Aug 7: Since I have been in a Potter mood this summer and the books are always fun to read, I am definitely signing up for this challenge at Galleysmith. If you haven’t read the series yet, well, of course I recommend it! And if you have, then you may want to listen to the audiobooks, which is accepted for  the challenge. You have almost a year to complete it and yes, there are prizes. But, of course the biggest reward is the joy of reading, right? ;)  Sign up by August 15th to be entered for the prize drawings!

The #amazonfail tweet-a-thon is still going strong. Amazon is calling the whole thing a glitch and there are several conspiracy theories floating around. I think they are trying to cover their assets because they really did not expect to get such a backlash. The thing is several authors have been reporting these issues going on for months and there are reports that Amazon employees stated that certain books deemed too adult would be kept from the searchable rankings. But now it is a glitch. Right…I am no techie, but the glitch theory is bunk ["why it's not a glitch" is explained quite technically HERE]
The only theory I am partial to is that a puritan hacker/Amazon employee created the term-specific-glitch, which still makes it censorship (even if it is not authorized). But that’s still pretty weak because it does not explain why people were being told in February that their books would not be listed in the sales rankings. The Seattle Post-Intelligencer has been covering the story well and  DailyKos has a good round-up of info and posts. Meanwhile, this hilarious chart from the National Coalition Against Censorship illustrates the recent buzz:

This is not over, even if they think they can whitewash it and move on. A boycott of Amazon has begun and several petitions are available upon request. I personally don’t use Amazon, and recommend independent stores and sites like BetterWorldBooks [link on sidebar!]. One of the things that turned me off of Amazon in the first place was that they seemed to be taking so much biz from the stores. I had to create an account at some point when I received a gift certificate [which I still haven't used!] but now I can’t figure out how to delete it…Let’s hope we see a surge in bookstore sales now.  BTW: Powell’s Books, a very established indy store also has a discount going on…on tweets its being called the #amazonfail discount, but the folks at Powell’s are a bit kinder than that. Here’s how they put it:

#powellswin deal!

At Powell’s, all books are created equal. We hold this truth to be self-evident. Whether any given title is deserving of a wide readership, we leave that decision to you, our customers. In the spirit of such freedoms that perhaps we too often take for granted, today we’re offering friends a special, winning deal.

    Just enter the code “#powellswin” by 11:59 pm (Pacific) on Thursday, April 16, 2009, and you’ll save 20% on your order of $20 or more.

Coupon valid online only, not in our stores. This discount cannot be combined with other offers. Offer not valid on eGift Cards. Limit one coupon per customer.

So, go buy a book! Anywhere but Amazon…

I am apparently not writing a poem today, just surfing and recovering from the sugar overload. And sharing stuff with others, too…Here’s a good list to check out:    10 Best Writing Books on Editor Unleashed
http://editorunleashed.com/2009/04/08/the-10-best-books-for-writers/
I am so glad I have some of these :) It is a good sign.

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pic from photobucket by weezweez

Well, there goes March, calmly and coolly, at least in these parts. Of course, I know it still feels like winter to some. I’ve been following a friend’s updates from Alaska where a volcano blew its load a couple weeks ago and other friends who somehow live through the winters in exotic places like Minnesota and Wisconsin. They all grew up here in southeast Virginia on the coast with me, but have migrated west since high school. I, for one, could not survive a winter north of the Mason-Dixon line. I like snow, and enjoyed the results of the one snowfall we had this year, at the beginning of this month. Driving through the start of it from Pennsylvania with three kids and a broken windshield wiper, however, sucked, to put it bluntly. So, yes, I am ready for April and spring, and though I may be complaining about our nasty, stifling humidity in another month, I am enjoying the sunshine now. It does make it slightly harder to sit at the desk and not stare out the window, but I am also soaking in some inspiration.

In recent years, I have definitely been hibernating more and feel like I am losing some connection with the outdoors, although I know I get more fresh air and sunshine than many folks out there. Yet I recently was diagnosed Vitamin D deficient by my doc, who told me most Americans who live north of Atlanta are considered deficient in the sunshine vitamin. This discovery has filled in a lot of blanks for me since D is linked to energy, moods and even digestion, all of which I have had issues with more since moving back here from Florida in 2002. Like many adults who either work in offices in front of the computer or at home in front of the computer, I need to get out more. So now I am on prescription Vitamin D [NOT covered by insurance btw!] and I am setting a personal goal for myself, to spend time outside every day (~20 mins is recommended). Easier to do these days, aside from the downpour periods we have been having.

I am hoping this will all lead to a recharge on the writing flow, too. I have been trying to focus on work [primarily, as in "finding some"] but I miss the creativity buzz I get when I am on an upswing. It would be nice if the two were combined in my life, which is the ultimate goal. But, as I was reminded the other day by Uppington, this path I am on right now will lead to another eventually. I have been down rockier ways, that is for sure, and really, though it is in many ways less scenic and exciting, I think I am on the right track. Like most things in this wild world it is all connected: improved nutrition leads to better health, leads to better writing leads to work, yada, yada… at least that is the theory I am working with this week.

The Poem-A-Day Challenge starts tomorrow which will be a great creativity exercise. I think it fits with Spring, too [how appropriate that April is National Poetry Month, no matter how "cruel" she may be]. I plan on blogging them, so I hope you like amateur poetry :)

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