Like most people, I hate writing blurbs.
(A blurb is a short, spicy description of your story or book.)
Basically, you have to introduce the main plot line and the main characters, the conflict and what’s at stake, while adding a catchy hook to get a potential reader’s or editor’s attention and desire to read more. Now, that is like juggling 5 cannon balls while doing freakin’ macrame. And it’s not that hard, but it takes a certain level of effort, which is very different from your actual writing mode, and requires you to sort of step outside of your story and see its commercial appeal (if any). When you’re writing, you’re the circus performer. When you’re writing a blurb, you’re the guy at the ticket booth shouting, “Don’t Miss the Greatest Show on Earth!”
Essentially, you try to look at it through the eyes of a stranger who has never read your work. So, what could possibly make them interested to even open it to page one? How do I know? I’m just a Turkey. Don’t look at me.
I’ve finished my story. What to do now, what to do?
When you’re absolutely sure that you’ve finished your story, send it to your unsuspecting loved one, or some brave, un-condescending volunteer for review. Listen to their advice, genuinely listen to it, and change the stuff that sounds like it needs changing. Keep your first draft copy somewhere, too, for psychological comfort. Once that’s done, and you’re ready to submit the story to a publisher…don’t. (Unless you really could use the money, but…) Set it aside and let it sit for a few months. Don’t touch it, unless you really need to. Just let it ripen and simmer there. Come back to it and read it again with a fresh eye (that’s as fresh as it will get for you, anyway).
I’ve noticed that within about 6-12 months, some things will pop up that you’d have never, ever noticed before. Awkward things, any inconsistencies, etc. You know, stuff like, “I want a dandelion,” Mary said, immediately followed by, “A yellow dandelion,” said Mary. At this point, do another revision. And keep going, until you’re absolutely sick of, and simultaneously pleased with, IT. But don’t over do it, either. Submit it, already!
You can shout at the stars
Stomp on the ground
The tall pines seem to be sneering at you
But they’re not
Between the past and the now
Like a fingerprint taken from a corpse.
The Girl in the Rocks
I remember the girl in the rocks
When she asked, “Does he eat lots?”
Meaning my dog-a big dog but scared nonetheless
Turned my head hard on its head.
Her tongue rolled the words
Like a snail rolls its shell
Smooth and polished
Against the breakers
High tide, gray rocks, and white legs
Just the figure halating light,
A simple question.
Must be the grinner of the catacombs.
I let it crumble
It lets me crumble
Dry here on the mudflats
Among the rocks and little tufts of grass
That spring up suddenly
As if from nowhere.
After the storm
I did not know
I did not know
When the rain world rain or hail
Hail, pelting the garden
With 9 mm snow
Now the sky is black and silent after the storm
The flowers got a beating
Slowly the ice melts and runs down the street
Under the bright lights
A yelp of delight
Someone is taking pictures
A Story of Sex
Clumsy and incongruous,
The lover has no time for prose,
Attaches like a remora to a seahorse
As they rock
Back and forth
The waves roll up on the beach
As a helicopter flies overhead
The pale bluffs
Shielded by her coat.
The branch keeps hitting the window in the storm,
Knocking against the glass
Pressing up a shattered face in the dark.
I would fuck the world (if it existed)
Dive into all its intricacies (if I’m real)
Shameless and unstopped,
Open the door or just walk through it
Fall off the edge into the sea.