One thing that is incredibly difficult to do when writing is to steer completely clear of cliches. There are some perfectly good things that can be written about that are honest to god cliches already by the time you think about writing them. At least maybe not cliches, but simply things that aren’t given good representation when they ARE written about.
Have you ever tried to write erotica? God damn, that shit is D I F F I C U L T. No wonder there’s a market for the 50 Shades series (however open about sexuality that might be sometimes, I hear that the second book does it better).
It’s not even a touchy genre like that that’s somewhat misrepresented or hard to do, it can be entire ideas in a piece.
Blood? To me, it’s too much associated with angst to just drop in the middle of something. That and bones can sometimes be a little weird outside of juxtaposition. Though, I argue that mentioning bones as a form of imagery or symbolism can be a lot better and in fact much heavier than using blood. Which is why those two are interchangable, and both aren’t done well to different degrees.
Yesterday I published “Posed To Kill Me Thermally” which was supposed to be about climbers that died on the way up the largest mountains on Earth. Everest was in mind, as were the other eight-thousanders. In that poem, the opening three lines are: “Dry blood and bone dust/ Make up the sand and snow/ On the slope”. Bone dust is used throughout the poem as a hyperbolic reference to what all the snow really is. In this poem, though, the theme was centered around that and I wasn’t going to get away from it with a kenning. The spirit and vitality of those once living climbers having been stripped away and become part of the mountain. I had to use something that could be cliched and make it unique.
I stress that if you come across them, don’t avoid cliches entirely, take them and make them something new and unique to you.
While I’m talking about Poised To Kill Me Thermally, I think it would be remiss of me not to mention my creative universe that it all revolves around. Metametaphors are what I’m good at. So that poem is part of a series with “Poikillmethermal” and “Poikilothermal” all describing more or less the same scene but with a progressively darker tone, culminating in the bone shards of climbers making the snow. Poikilothermal was written while listening to the Xilent song “Kill Me”, because when it came out I was housesitting in North Bend and had a glorious view of Mount Si. So with that song I made an association with the cold, snow, mountains, and forest. Also in Poised To Kill Me Thermally is a reference to my “Murmur” series (Murmur, Palpitation, Irregular, Flutter), in which stained glass is a metaphor for cherished memories. Those poems themselves have further references, and so on. In my mind, they’re all part of the same creative universe. Abstract, macabre, reality, whatever.
Anyways, outside of the writing sphere, I’m going to the gym today. My girlfriend and I have agreed to try to make this a regular thing. I want it to stick! Maybe it’ll give me something to write about, seeing as I have never ever been to a gym to ‘go to the gym’. Usually this is the start of a 4chan greentext, but hey, I’m going in with an open mind. Hopefully nothing awful happens. Gonna charge my bluetooth headphones, and do some cardio!
Also today is tuition day! As soon as I get a paycheck, it gets pried from my hands! So I’m still a starving artist for the meantime and you should check out my story Natural on Amazon.com today buy it now yes please!
Kidding aside, that’s where I’m at today. Gym, coffee, tuition, and bone dust acting as the snow at the top of Everest.
Spring quarter’s starting up soon, and what I’m hoping will be the greatest class of all time “ADVANCED WRITING” popped up on my course list today online. Hooooo boy, that’s going to be fantastic. I haven’t properly workshopped since that poetry class I took last spring. Advanced Writing, though. Man, I love the sound of that. I’m gonna enjoy having that notch on my gun.