The creativity tip in my last newsletter invited you to: Try doing Morning Pages. I haven't had any feedback on that suggestion, so I don't know if any of you have given it a try. But I continue doing mine most every day.
Before discussing this month's creativity topic, I have a confession to make: I've been so engrossed in my current writing project that I haven't had much time to think about this month's topic. In fact, I almost skipped sending a newsletter this month. But instead, I've decided to talk about what I've been experiencing with my own writing.
Some months back, I discussed my decision to return to a poetry-centered approach to my current work-in-progress (WIP). In that newsletter, I talked about my love of poetry but also my lack of confidence in my ability as a poet. But it's not just lack of confidence that's made this project a struggle. Part of me worries that I could spend months reworking it as poetry and still not find a market for it.
So I was quite surprised when I recently became totally engrossed in the project again. The reason for my renewed enthusiasm? I decided to rewrite one of the poems in a form I'd never tried before: terza rima. This is the form Dante invented to write The Divine Comedy, and I have specific reasons for wanting to use the form in my WIP. (If you're curious about terza rima, you can read more about it and see examples at the Society of Classical Poets website.)
This isn't the first time I've tackled a new form for this project. I wrote one of the first poems as an Italian sonnet. That was a real challenge! I began by spending lots of time reading about sonnets and studying examples. My initial attempts at writing one were quite awful, but I eventually created a sonnet I liked. And I've received positive feedback on it from accomplished poets.
That success convinced me to at least try my hand at terza rima. I approached this new challenge in the same way, by first researching the form and studying examples. I finally started working on a terza rima poem this past Tuesday. Much to my surprise, I've become obsessed with writing this poem! I want to work on it every chance I get.
So I asked myself why? I think part of the reason is that I love word puzzles and writing a terza rima poem feels like a very challenging word puzzle or game. I know what the content of the poem needs to be. The game is to find a way to convey that content within the rules of the form.