Friday, August 16, 2013

Day 222 of the 365 Days of Blogging

The author, Dane F. Baylis


For denizens of the Ventura County, CA literary and arts scene, Phil Taggert, Marsha De la O, and Friday Lubina of ASKEW POETRY JOURNAL, are hosting an on-going, Thursday evening featured reading followed by an open mic. It happens in the Topping Room of the Foster Library on Main Street in downtown Ventura every Thursday, except the fourth Thursday of the month.
The Avenue 50 Studio, 131 N. Avenue 50, Los Angeles, CA 90042 is hosting The Bluebird Reading on September 8th from 2:00 to 4:00 PM. The featured readers are Audrey Kuo, Cara Van Le, Melinda Palacio, and Mariano Zaro. An open mic session follows the featured readers. You can Google directions.


We've been talking about removing certain types of words and phrases. We have looked at how to make our prose more immediate and action-oriented by reducing or eliminating expletives and past perfect uses. This keeps things that much closer to the present and therefore tends to involve the reader more closely.
What about shortening verbs? Using fewer "hads" in internal dialogue worked small wonders. How about a little verbal shorthand?
For example, unedited: He would be able to walk again with the use of a cane.
Edited: He could walk again using a cane.
By substituting could for  would be and using for with the use of we have shortened a twelve word sentence to a more compact and still expressive seven word sentence. It shows us that, when we encounter a verb phrase, we should search for ways to shorten it. Terms such as "be able to" should raise red flags right away so you can consider alternatives. Eliminating them decreases verbiage and increases comprehension.
UNTITLED 2/19/13
 I’ll be honest
This isn’t about you
Even if you’re reading it
In your darkened room
Just you.
The fame thing?
It’s over rated
Strangers standing there
Speaking candied falsities
A second before you
Become the focus.
It’s harder to be a counterfeiter
Or cop
Or drunken neurosurgeon
Poets are just
Petty thieves
Flashing down like crows
Stealing shiny baubles.
The best ideas
Are just lying there
In the newspaper
On the table
Available as inebriated barflies
Willing to give it up
For a pack of smokes
Or a shot and a beer.
When morning comes around
You will lie in bed
Smelling the pillows
Then make up lies
Of passionate desolation
That you will imprison
In bottom drawer dungeons.
You will stand at the podium
Clasp your breast and sob
“All of my best moments
Are as degenerate
As Easter
Amongst the Spanish flagellants
Raking off flesh
With spiked chain flails
In my deepest heart
I cry for clarity
And long to lick their wounds.”
Meanwhile...Live, love, write.
Want to follow or subscribe to this blog? There are gadgets for that on the right side of the page. You can leave comments in the form below. I can be reached directly at . You can also find links to some of the sites I visit from time to time on the right. I'm also looking for submissions to the Your Work/Your Love page. Authors retain all rights.
Dane F. Baylis

No comments:

Post a Comment