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Random Nuggets From Words North

From songwriters, poets and more

I attended the first annual ‘Words North’ writers conference in Dawson Creek at the end of September. (I know, I know… It took me long enough to write about it…) I plan to post a series based on the event, but for today I have some random nuggets of wisdom I gleaned from various sources and which I jotted down in my notes. Enjoy.

Iyan Bruvold:(singer/songwriter)

“The more I don’t care what people want to hear, the more they want to hear what I have to say.”

“It’s about vulnerability and authenticity. An urgency to write vs a selfish endeavour.”

“Sometimes a musician’s (or a writer’s) craft can also be his or her curse because they can’t just enjoy a piece without criticizing it or finding fault…”

Clea Roberts (poet)

Art allows us to express ourselves and is a way to deal with life; a means to process and articulate our experiences. There should be “Tensegrity” – a tension that holds it together… Writing is a way to navigate grief – and grief is universal. 

Poetry is a crystallization of life… Speak your version of the truth… Being too specific is like pinning a butterfly to a specimen card – words need to be free.

In your first draft, get the broad strokes down, then ‘fiddle’ to make it better. Free write to start, then set it aside. Words and phrases can later be refined… (good advice during Nano season…)

Find your community of writing. Write to make sense of the world – deconstruct and untangle… When you tell your story, you find your community. As an artist, put yourself out there… it can be awkward, but it normalizes Art – ‘Come out’ as an artist!

Balance between public and private life – choose writing time over self promotion… stretch – it is a constant negotiation and checking in with yourself to make sure you are balanced… (Tensegrity again.)

Quotes Ann Tyler: “I write because I want more than one life!”

Quoted Pamela Holloway: “The importance of being a literary citizen”

Wow! More great quotes and words of wisdom to come!


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