I’m starting to put together my first full poetry collection. I’m going to be writing some new material within the next couple of weeks to go with what I’ve already got. I want as many people as possible to read it and give me feedback. So please comment here with your email address or any means of contact, if you’re up for helping me out. You’ll be getting a free sample of my first draft, if that’s enough to tempt you?
In other news, I’ve now confirmed two amazing acts for my first independent event and am ordering flyers now. I’m starting to produce lots of exciting things for it, so watch this space! Here are the details…
Also, you can get 13% off my self-published books until this Friday 15th! Go here to check my page out.
The past few days can be explained by something that happened to me yesterday morning. I had bought two travel-cards for that day and today. As I stepped off the train at Waterloo and my ticket for the day somehow flew out of my hand. Everything turned to slow motion as it slipped between the train and the platform’s edge and on to the tracks. In a panic, I rushed to someone who worked there at the barrier’s and explained what had happened. He said I would have to buy another ticket if I couldn’t find it, and so he followed me as I sped along the tracks trying to find where I dropped it. Thankfully, I found it and I stopped my shaky panic as another worker lent down with a litter picker and fished it out.
It was a microcosm of the emotions I had been through the past few days. For personal reasons, I had been on an emotional roller-coaster (excuse the cliché) and felt a switch between unlucky and lucky. I’d cried myself to sleep for the first time ever, and learnt that the only way you can combat that is to take some sleeping pills to send you off. The next day I tried to keep my tears at bay whilst doing yoga, being told I was ‘strong’ and to remember my ‘inner core’ (actually something my mum always says, but at this point coming from the dulcet tones of Leah Bracknell). I made my way through the work day at Sainsbury’s and was nearly about to break when during my review session, my manager said ‘you always come in with a smile on your face,’ due to the irony of how utterly rubbish I felt at the time. The review was great and made me feel a lot better about myself and I even managed to get my Saturdays back by asking to change my shift pattern in April.
So, on to more positive and self-affirming things. On 12th January, my eBook was officially released on iTunes. It appears one person has bought a copy from California, so whoever you are, please let me know what you think! I think it’s important to get excited about these little things and to remember the words of Leah Bracknell in day-to-day life. Sometimes I read over my school reports and even things like my Facebook page, just to remind myself of who I am and that I like who I am. My dad has always taught me it’s very important to like yourself. And despite being labeled “shy” by others, my mum has always said I have an inner confidence about myself.
Some other things I wanted to share are related to the poetry of others. At my Aunt and Uncle’s house, which is a lot more like mine will be than the spotless house I live in with my parents, they have a poem on the fridge by Rosie Milligan:
Dust if you must.
But wouldn’t it be better, To paint a picture, or write a letter, Bake a cake, or plant a seed? Ponder the difference between want and need.
Dust if you must. But there is not much time With rivers to swim and mountains to climb! Music to hear, and books to read, Friends to cherish and life to lead.
Dust if you must. But the world’s out there With the sun in your eyes, the wind in your hair, A flutter of snow, a shower of rain. This day will not come round again.
Dust if you must. But bear in mind, Old age will come and it’s not kind. And when you go, and go you must, You, yourself, will make more dust.
There’s a band that I saw at Bestival, that I really want to see again, called Los Campesinos. I just wanted to share a spoken word section of their song This is how you spell ‘HAHAHA, We Destroyed the Hopes and Dreams of a Generation of Faux-Romantics.’ I find the combination of music, song and spoken word inspiring but, not only that, I find the words very poetic and yet witty and contemporary. Have a read:
You walk in from your mother’s balcony Panda-eyed and freezing cold You bury yourself in my chest to warm I notice the goosebumps on your arms, millions And whether it’s because of the numbers of hours spent laid facedown on my bed listening to white noise, or, well, obviously it’s not, I somehow manage to translate them from braille
The trails on your skin spoke more to me than the reams and reams of half finished novels you’d leave lying all over the place And every quotation that’d dribble from your mouth like a final, fatal livejournal entry I know I am wrong I am sorry
With that, I am going to wrap up. One last thought; if you picked up a copy of The Times today, there was an article by Francis Beckett titled ‘Take the penury out of the penmanship’ which is about my MA course in Creative Entrepreneurship. I’m feeling quite organised and excited, though still a little scared in a Metric-Help-I’m-Alive kind of way.’
Also, I’ve found there’s a Canadian woman who is also an entrepreneurial writer who’s stolen my name! Well, she’s called herself La Carmina, and her real name is Carmen Yuen. I think we’re different enough for it not be annoying or add confusion, but as I like the uniqueness of my name and she’s more well-known than me, it disheartens me a little. But to end, it is important to know yourself and remember your inner core.
Winter has been rather chilly (no surprises there Radiohead) but the sun was glorious the week before. Here are some photos I took whilst waiting at Worcester Park train station. The skirt is from Primark. I bought it and then realised it’s verging on the ‘midi’ which I didn’t think I’d like but it’s nice and floaty and whooshes around when you spin.
So, me and Matt have been posting these little cards around – you can grab one from two of my local libraries (Worcester Park and Sutton) as well as the Poetry Library at the Southbank Centre.
I’ve taken a few comparison shots of Christmas trees as I’m pretty proud of our tree this year 🙂 Mine is the one at the end, and you can see it all lit up on the left of this text.
A slight digression here, but I had my iPod on shuffle and found these two tracks went really well together: Enter Shikari’s Mothership, followed by Bloc Party’s Talons. I’ve got them to listen to via YouTube just below…
Speaking of music… after buying tickets to see Rihanna in May for my birthday, the day finally came! I went with my friend from uni, Josie, and some of her friends. Calvin Harris began the night, get everyone going (well, some people going… as we worked our way through the crowd there were a few people standing very still and leaving piles of bags and coats for us to trip over). The lady herself was, as expected, amazing! Highlights include Rihanna playing the drums, pole-dancing as an art-form (along with her own rather saucy dancing) and the finale of Umbrella, ending a night of fantastic tunes. It was also quite cool seeing all the different costume changes as well as witnessing someone who can keep breathing with all that singing and dancing.
In other news, I have had my haircut so that it’s no longer asymmetric. I hadn’t had a cut for 7 months so I splashed out at Toni & Guy (Mustafa is expensive but he’s my favourite) and I know you’re “supposed” to go every 4-6 weeks or something but I’m going to leave it until May now. I’m growing it out and I can’t wait! I have a full fringe as well which I haven’t had since I was at Primary school or something! I spent a few days in Norwich and Matt got me some lovely presents (he made me open some but I’ve saved a few) and below you can see the amazing picture he’s drawn off us 🙂
I came home to London to find my self-published book! It had typos which I have hopefully sorted now but I’d really welcome some feedback. When I get published by a publishing company (remaining positive and not saying ‘if’) I want it to be very visually exciting but I’ve just done the basic bones so that if people want to rip it apart for the poetry they can. That said, if someone completely hated it, they probably wouldn’t like anything I did but I am welcoming any constructive criticism.
I’ve also got an eBook and priced them both quite cheaply. The hard copy comes with extra poems and costs £2 more than the eBook. Both are available here from Lulu by clicking here. In about 6-8 weeks they’ll be available from other places like Amazon too. Great if you end up with a new Kindle or Ipad in your stocking this year. It’s Christmas in half an hour – so have a great time celebrating!