ysabetwordsmith: Damask smiling over their shoulder (polychrome)
I've got a Polychrome Heroics character, Ambrose, who works in the Omaha penitentiary. To keep people like Shiv from driving him completely up a wall, Ambrose and some of his coworkers play Complaint Bingo for prizes such as movie tickets. [personal profile] dialecticdreamer helped me make some sample cards ...

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ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
Here is my second card for the Wellness Toolbox Bingo fest, held in honor of Mental Health Awareness Month. This fest focuses on taking good care of yourself.  See all my 2015 bingo cards.

Theme: Wellness Toolbox Bingo
Dates: May 2nd - June 1st
Public Card: Yes
Open Card/Amnesty: Yes
Fills: Anything goes. Remember to use your content warnings!
Prizes: banners will be available at the end of the month and beyond.

If you'd like to sponsor a particular square, especially if you have an idea for what character, series, or situation it would fit -- talk to me and we'll work something out. This is a good opportunity for those of you with favorites that don't always mesh well with the themes of my monthly projects. I may still post some of the fills for free, because I'm using this to attract new readers; but if it brings in money, that means I can do more of it. That's part of why I'm crossing some of the bingo prompts with other projects, such as the Poetry Fishbowl.

Underlined prompts have been filled.



WELLNESS TOOLBOX BINGO CARD

ForgiveRelabelingSocializeDancingYardwork or Gardening
Make New FriendsCuddle with a Friend or Pet or PillowMeditationPositive AffirmationsNurture Self-Worth
HousecleaningFlexibilityWILD CARDLearn Something NewOrganizing
HugsRandom Act of KindnessIdentify a Feeling You're HavingSurrenderEat Something Delicious and/or Healthy
Go OutsideGet Enough SleepWalkingSwimmingHealthy Touch

ysabetwordsmith: (paladins)
This is today's freebie, inspired by a prompt from [personal profile] dialecticdreamer. It belongs to the series Path of the Paladins.


"Dreams of Ink"
-- a decastich


It is a dream that does not fade,
When dawn's light overtakes the glade,
Of thorns and blossoms, berries too,
All decked about in morning dew.
Already he's bestowed his heart,
And not upon the God of Art,
So why this vision that won't go?
It's nettlesome, it breaks the flow,
And Johan knows not what to think.
He sleeps again, and dreams of ink.

* * * 

Notes:

A decastich is any poem of exactly 10 lines.  It is often free verse, but it can use rhyme/meter, as this one does.


ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
The Poetry Fishbowl is now CLOSED for prompts.  Thank you for your enthusiasm.  I still have a few prompters to finish, so keep an eye on this page.

Starting now, the bonus Poetry Fishbowl is open!  This is the perk for the January 8, 2013 fishbowl meeting the $250 goal.  Today's theme is "Path of the Paladins."  I will be checking this page periodically throughout the day. When people make suggestions, I'll pick some and weave them together into a poem ... and then another ... and so on. I'm hoping to get a lot of ideas and a lot of poems.

Remember that this session focuses on plot progression; scroll down to the bottom to find the list of need-to-write poems that I'm inviting folks to help me develop.


What Is a Poetry Fishbowl?

Writing is usually considered a solitary pursuit. One exception to this is a fascinating exercise called a "fishbowl." This has various forms, but all of them basically involve some kind of writing in public, usually with interaction between author and audience. A famous example is Harlan Ellison's series of "stories under glass" in which he sits in a bookstore window and writes a new story based on an idea that someone gives him. Writing classes sometimes include a version where students watch each other write, often with students calling out suggestions which are chalked up on the blackboard for those writing to use as inspiration.

In this online version of a Poetry Fishbowl, I begin by setting a theme; today's theme is "Path of the Paladins."  I invite people to suggest characters, settings, and other things relating to that theme. Then I use those prompts as inspiration for writing poems.


Cyberfunded Creativity

I'm practicing cyberfunded creativity. If you enjoy what I'm doing and want to see more of it, please feed the Bard. The following options are currently available:

1) Sponsor the Fishbowl -- Here is a PayPal button for donations. There is no specific requirement, but $1 is the minimum recommended size for PayPal transactions since they take a cut from every one. You can also donate via check or money order sent by postal mail. If you make a donation and tell me about it, I promise to use one of your prompts. Anonymous donations are perfectly welcome, just won't get that perk. General donations will be tallied, and at the end of the fishbowl I’ll post a list of eligible poems based on the total funding; then the audience can vote on which they want to see posted.

2) Buy It Now! -- Gakked from various e-auction sites, this feature allows you to sponsor a specific poem. If you don't want to wait for some editor to buy and publish my poem so you can read it, well, now you don't have to. Sponsoring a poem means that I will immediately post it on my blog for everyone to see, with the name of the sponsor (or another dedicate) if you wish; plus you get a nonexclusive publication right, so you can post it on your own blog or elsewhere as long as you keep the credits intact. You'll need to tell me the title of the poem you want to sponsor. I'm basing the prices on length, and they're comparable to what I typically make selling poetry to magazines (semi-pro rates according to Duotrope's Digest).

0-10 lines: $5
11-25 lines: $10
26-40 lines: $15
41-60 lines: $20
Poems over 60 lines, or with very intricate structure, fall into custom pricing.

3) Commission a scrapbook page. I can render a chosen poem in hardcopy format, on colorful paper, using archival materials for background and any embellishments. This will be suitable for framing or for adding to a scrapbook. Commission details are here.  See latest photos of sample scrapbooked poems: "Sample Scrapbooked Poems 1-24-11"

4) Spread the word. Echo or link to this post on your LiveJournal, other blog, Twitter, Facebook, MySpace, Digg, StumbleUpon, or any other social network.  Useful Twitter hashtags include #poetryfishbowl and #promptcall.  Encourage people to come here and participate in the fishbowl.  If you have room for it, including your own prompt will give your readers an idea of what the prompts should look like; ideally, update later to include the thumbnail of the poem I write, and a link to the poem if it gets published.  If there is at least one new prompter or donor, I will post an extra freebie poem.


Additional Notes

1) I customarily post replies to prompt posts telling people which of their prompts I'm using, with a brief description of the resulting poem(s). If you want to know what's available, watch for those "thumbnails."

2) You don't have to pay me to see a poem based on a prompt that you gave me. I try to send copies of poems to people, mostly using the LJ message function.  (Anonymous prompters will miss this perk unless you give me your eddress.)  These are for-your-eyes-only, though, not for sharing.

3) Sponsors of the Poetry Fishbowl in general, or of specific poems, will gain access to an extra post in appreciation of their generosity.  While you're on the Donors list, you can view all of the custom-locked posts in that category.  Click the "donors" tag to read the archive of those.  I've also posted a list of other donor perks there.  I customarily leave donor names on the list for two months, so you'll get to see the perk-post from this month and next.

4) After the Poetry Fishbowl concludes, I will post a list of unsold poems and their prices, to make it easier for folks to see what they might want to sponsor.


Feed the Fish!
Now's your chance to participate in the creative process by posting ideas for me to write about. Today's theme is "Path of the Paladins."  You can pick one of the following ideas and elaborate on it; some already have a solid concept while others are still just placeholders.

These are poems that need to be written in order to complete the story arc of Ari's novice year. They are the most important things I'd like to get done, and the most specific. If you look at the timeline, you can see that most of these will be late winter or spring poems.

Kalad joins Bodil's troop following Gorrein.

"Who Gives of Himself" DONE
Shahana and Ari meet with a gathering of saints to discuss how to repair the tattered social fabric of the world.

"Ink" DONE
Johan finds himself fascinated with an image of blackberries and roses twined together. Finally he decides to have it inked onto his shoulder.

"Such Strong Needs" DONE
LJ user The_vulture says: "Ya know, I'm really looking forward to reading about the first time Ari serves as the conduit for Gailah's power. I suspect it will be dramatic and very life altering (for more than just Ari)."

"Sprouts"  DONE
Larn does the spring planting, now with more help.

"Thorny Paths"  DONE
During a skirmish, Johan discovers a new talent regarding plants, and Althey struggles with his feelings about death.

"Forging Ahead"
Shahana takes Ari to a priest of the smith god, to have her armor fitted and a sword forged to hold the star of her service. The priest invites them to strip down to shifts in the hot smithy.


I also need some extra poems focusing on Shahana and Ari, to space those between poems about other characters. These are medium-importance, and they can be about anything as long as it features these characters and makes sense for that point in their journey. Short snippets would be especially useful, as many of the other poems in this series are long plotty ones; and upbeat topics provide leavening between the really heavy stuff.

After Kalad joining Bodil, before "Our Most Vulnerable and Powerful Selves."

Between "Knell" and "Puzzling People."

Between "Dog Tired" and "Swimming Against the Tide."

Between "No Other Teacher" and "Enlighten the Dark Corners"

Between "Hallowing" and "Winning Hands."

After Larn's spring planting, before "Thorny Paths."


Finally, think of anything else that needs to be wrapped up in this book. Are there other loose threads that you want to see tied off? Character development? Reprisal of themes? This is lower priority, but still worth collecting. I'm soliciting ideas for paladins, deities, villains, innocent bystanders, holy ground, abandoned places, battlegrounds, refuges, moments of personal growth or discovery, new accomplishments, horrible realizations, plot twists, side scenes from previous events, gaps in the storyline that need to be filled, everyday issues transmuted into fantasy versions, enchanted or holy artifacts, symbols of faith, magic, PTSD, asexuality, families of choice, perseverance, and poetic forms in particular. But anything is welcome, really. If you manage to recommend a form that I don't recognize, I will probably pounce on it and ask you for its rules. I do have the first edition of Lewis Turco's The Book of Forms which covers most common and many obscure forms.

I'll post at least one of the fishbowl poems here so you-all can enjoy it. (Remember, you get an extra freebie poem if someone new posts a prompt or makes a donation.) The rest of the poems will go into my archive for magazine submission.
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
Here is my new card for the [community profile] origfic_bingo  fest. This bingo challenge encourages original material across all formats and lengths. It's a terrific fest if you want gen and/or gentle fiction. There are Gen, Romance, and Kink cards available or you can mix those categories. Read the rules first. A signup post appears the first week of each month, when anyone can request a card whether you've completed a bingo or not. (See all my 2015 bingo cards.)

If you'd like to sponsor a particular square, especially if you have an idea for what character, series, or situation it would fit -- talk to me and we'll work something out.  I've had a few requests for this and the results have been awesome so far.  This is a good opportunity for those of you with favorites that don't always mesh well with the themes of my monthly projects. I may still post some of the fills for free, because I'm using this to attract new readers; but if it brings in money, that means I can do more of it. That's part of why I'm crossing some of the bingo prompts with other projects, such as the Poetry Fishbowl.

Underlined prompts have been filled.

This fest allows bingo claims for fills that have been written but not posted yet. The card below is Gen/Romance.


BINGO
first timewishingforbiddenseductionoutnumbered
underdoggrowing old togetherunwelcome guestwarfriendship
peacelesser evilFREE SPACEbeautyhigh and low
marketunder pressuremeasuresperfectmasks
silenceworryingblessingcutting edgedesperate
 
ysabetwordsmith: Damask smiling over their shoulder (polychrome)
This is the bonus material for the May 5, 2015 Poetry Fishbowl making its $300 goal. Here are some of the tools that Terramagne uses to support a healthy social atmosphere.

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ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
This is the freebie for the May 2015 Creative Jam. It was inspired by prompts from [personal profile] alexseanchai. It also fills the "watch television" square in my 5-2-15 card for the Wellness Toolbox Bingo fest. This poem belongs to the [community profile] nineforthenebulasheart project.

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ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
The May 2015 Crowdfunding Creative Jam is now open on Dreamwidth and on LiveJournal.  Our theme this month is "Hope."  Come give us prompts, or claim ideas for your own inspiration.


What I Have Written

"Pinpoints of Light"
"Pinpoints of Light" is a free-verse poem in which the Blueshift Troupers visit an alien planet, run into trouble, and find unexpected allies.
170 lines, Buy It Now = $85

"If You Could Bottle It"
Your bottle prompt inspired the free-verse poem "If You Could Bottle It." Bruno used to be an enforcer until mad science torture left him with nerve damage and a new superpower. Sometimes, hope is a thing you can't find, until you give it away.
106 lines, Buy It Now = $53

"Searching by Starlight
Today's freebie features pop culture research set in [community profile] nineforthenebulasheart.

"Moving Pictures"
Your prompt about innermost hearts inspired the free-verse poem "Moving Pictures." Merle likes to study humanity by watching movies.
26 lines, Buy It Now = $15

"Touching Scenes"
It takes months before Eric and TeJay can touch each other in a comfortable way.  This story belongs to the Don't Try This at Home series of the Schrodinger's Heroes project.  It has been partially sponsored by [personal profile] dialecticdreamer and will be posted once it's fully funded.
1,422 words

"Reveal Everything Mysterious"
Cuoio and Chiara go on a double date with Ruggiero and Olympia, so that Cuoio can learn more about how this kind of relationship is supposed to work.
534 lines, Buy It Now = $267


From My Prompts

[personal profile] dialecticdreamer has written the short story "Hope" based on my beach prompt, and featuring Dr. Infanta during the Victorian period.

[personal profile] alexconall has written "A Half-Whispered Prayer" based on my prompt about dragons, in which a young girl goes seeking help, and gives as much as she finds.

[personal profile] dialecticdreamer has written the story "Hope in a Bottle" which features Kristen and her foster mothers.  This one will be posted as a freebie later.
ysabetwordsmith: (paladins)
The Poetry Fishbowl has made its $250 goal three times, so that earns a bonus fishbowl on Tuesday, May 19. This time I'm doing something different: choosing a well-developed series with an eye toward plot progression. The featured series is Path of the Paladins. I'm going to list some poem concepts, then invite you to pick one you'd like to see and expand on it a little more. Take a look at these now, go back and reread the series if you want to, and mull over ideas for the fishbowl on Tuesday.

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ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
Here is a disappointing article about how art imitates art, instead of life.  It's worse in Africa.  Cities look like cities.  A lot of people wear the same kinds of clothes as people anywhere else in the world.  There are no giraffes on Main Street.  And that's not what people expect to see in Africa.  The results of trying to splice expectation over reality can be ghastly.

This?  This is why I use current events as inspiration, look up images from places where my characters live, if I'm writing in this world or a close analog of it.  Sure there are divergence points; I try to highlight those when I spot them.  But mostly I want to give a real sense of what it's like a in particular place.  Jamaica Plain.  Omaha.  Waxahachie.  London.  It matters where people live.
ysabetwordsmith: Damask smiling over their shoulder (polychrome)
 Based on an audience poll, the general fund has sponsored 21 new verses in "The Whole Universe Surrenders."  Watch Clement get his ass handed to him by three kittens.
ysabetwordsmith: (Origami Mage)
This poem is spillover from the April 5, 2015 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by a prompt from [personal profile] zeeth_kyrah. It also fills the "enjoy nature" square in my 5-2-15 card for the Wellness Toolbox Bingo fest, the "summertime (and the livin' is easy)" square in my 3-16-15 card for the [community profile] genprompt_bingo fest, and the "Wild Card: Asia" square in my 9-1-14 card for the [community profile] ladiesbingo fest. This poem has been sponsored out of the general fund based on an audience poll. It belongs to the Origami Mage series.

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ysabetwordsmith: Maryam Smith in a tophat (steamsmith)
This poem came out of the May 5, 2015 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by prompts from [personal profile] kelkyag and LJ user Marina_bonomi. It also fills the "socialize" square in my 5-2-15 card for the Wellness Toolbox Bingo fest. This poem has been sponsored by Anthony & Shirley Barrette. It belongs to The Steamsmith series.

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ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
This poem is spillover from the April 3, 2015 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by a prompt from [personal profile] librarygeek. It also fills "the sky at night" square in my 3-16-15 card for the [community profile] genprompt_bingo fest. This poem has been selected in an audience poll for the May 5, 2015 Poetry Fishbowl making its $200 goal. It belongs to the series The Clay of Life.

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ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
This Magpie Monday, [personal profile] dialecticdreamer wrote the story "Inner Storm" which I have sponsored.  It's a wonderful sickfic about what happens when a human tries to get by on alien food.  There is also an index page for the Storm series now.  

I am just so happy to have this!  It is exactly the kind of deep sociological science fiction that I love best, but has gotten so hard to find amidst all the military SF and pr0n urban fantasy.  The cultural development is beautiful and it's such fun to see the characters cleverly working out solutions to their problems.  So I wanted to share it with you-all.  Enjoy!
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
I have two fishbowl polls up on LiveJournal now: the free epic poll and the general fund poll.  If you're not on LJ then you can vote in a comment. 
ysabetwordsmith: Damask smiling over their shoulder (polychrome)
This poem is from the May 5, 2015 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by prompts from [personal profile] thnidu and Shirley Barrette. It also fills the "talk with a friend" square in my 5-2-15 card for the Wellness Toolbox Bingo fest. This poem belongs to the Polychrome Heroics series.

WARNING: This poem deals with some intense personal topics. Highlight to read the warnings, some of which are spoilers. The two main characters are dealing with very difficult issues around gender identity and sexual orientation. They are at the stage where they're realizing their current circumstances are untenable, but they are not yet ready to make the major changes required for happiness. However! They do get there, because this is actually a prequel for Hyperspaceman and Professor Nigel Bonneville, both of whom we've seen in much better circumstances farther down the timeline. If these are sensitive topics for you, please consider your headspace before reading onward.

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ysabetwordsmith: Damask smiling over their shoulder (polychrome)
This poem is from the May 5, 2015 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by a prompt from [personal profile] redsixwing. It also fills the "best friends" square in my 12-17-14 card for the [community profile] genprompt_bingo fest. This poem has been sponsored by Anthony & Shirley Barrette. It belongs to the Antimatter & Stalwart Stan thread of the Polychrome Heroics series.

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ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
 [personal profile] dialecticdreamer is hosting Magpie Monday again.  There is no theme; ask for whatever you want, from an established setting or something new.  Give a prompt, get a backchannel copy of a ficlet or poem.  Signal boosts get you more writing.  There are other individual and collective perks too.

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