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"To see, to hear, to think poetry comes so easy. To write it, now that is another thing entirely," -- Jon

Odds 'n ends:

How quickly the year passes. Writing the last Newsletter, I would need to stop typing and warm my fingers. Now I find sweat dripping on my notebook creating small blue pools in the ink.

The Spring Workshop is behind us, and what a great event it was. Thirty-one poems had been submitted to be critiqued by Jeanne Emmons or Kyle McCord. Both critics were first time guests at an IPA workshop and brought fresh real-world insights to attendees. I think all that participated are looking forward to having Jeanne and Kyle join us again in the future. Plan now for the Fall Workshop October 28th, details on our website.

IPA members attending the NFSPS Convention in Fort Worth June 29 - July 2 could only say, "You shoulda' been there." Find more information on the convention elsewhere in the Newsletter.

A review the coverage of our state by IPA area representatives reveals there are a number of large areas who are not represented. Contact Max Molleston (contact details on the newsletter masthead) if you would like to consider being an area representative or would like more information.

Bits and pieces:

You have some time to write, the urge to create is strong, materials are in place... but the well is dry. The words don't come. There are as many answers to this dilemma as there are writers and enough books on the subject to rival many small town libraries. Let me offer a solution that has worked for me; take it for what it's worth.

I have accumulated over the years several pages (nearly a score) of what I like to call "bits and pieces." There is little organization to these pages as they have grown in quite a haphazard manner. Within them however, are seeds from which have sprung a multitude of poems and many more yet shall.

There are words that caught my fancy or the odd phrase that I liked, subject ideas, possible titles, word images and snippets of verse. There are notes and observations of people, places and things encountered over the years, as well as the occasional passage purloined from another author; are all here. When my muse takes a holiday and something is needed to kick-start my pen, perusing these scraps invariably leads me to "oh there, I think I can work with that" as I find a tidbit which seems to fit that day's mood. Okay, I confess that a piece of poetry "ready for prime time" is not always the result. Even so, I will have the embryo of a poem that can be incubated to be looked at later when the emotions, ideas, and words may be more malleable.

What are your solutions to "writer's block?" Drop me an email and let me know; perhaps they will be shared in a future column.

"Poetry is when an emotion has found its thought and the thought has found words." -- Robert Frost

Jerry
August 2017

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