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My Favorite Blogs, Not on the Shortlist

Book Blogger Appreciation Week has kicked off, and all week long there are activities, scavenger hunts, and memes. Savvy Verse & Wit will be offering a ton of giveaways this week, and we hope that you will participate in BBAW, read reviews, enter giveaways, and other activities.

Today, I wanted to highlight some of my favorite book blogs that I read everyday. These are blogs that did not make the shortlists this year.

Let’s start with my nomination for Best New Blog: Book Chick City

She has a great color scheme and the sidebars and post sections are streamlined. Enough of aesthetics though, what I really love best are her reviews. I wanted to provide you with some of the best reviews I’ve read on her site, and I hope you will check them out and add Book Chick City to your reader.

1. She’s already started participating in the community here and here.
2. Passionate book reviews.
3. Insightful interviews.

Another blog that I feel should have been shortlisted this year is The Literate Housewife Review.

Jennifer’s blog has a great design for her blog with a unique representation of herself, and this blog is easy to navigate as well. I love her honesty and her anecdotes about her girls and family. You really feel at home reading her blog, like you’re sitting down to tea with her. Here are some of my favorite posts:

1. Her Dog Days of Summer challenge was exceptional.
2. Read her post about BBAW.
3. And she is creative in other ways, with her bookmark of the month club.

Have you checked out Bookgirl’s Nightstand?

Iliana is one of the most creative bloggers I’ve come across, and you can easily check out her journal-making skills at her Etsy shop or on her blog. Her blog has a great color scheme and nice set up, where you can easily find what reading challenges she’s joined and the progress she has made. Here are some of her latest, greatest posts:

1. A book review in pictures.
2. Her post on foreign bookstores.
3. Adventures in Bookbinding

You must have known I would talk about my buddy, Anna’s blog, Diary of an Eccentric.

She works hard on her blog and on our joint venture War Through the Generations (but we’re not talking about that because it is on the shortlist). Not only is Anna reviewing books, interviewing authors, and offering guest bloggers the spotlight, but also she shares her blog, on occasion, with her daughter, known as The Girl! Reading their joint reviews is fun, but let’s not forget her hidden talent, knitting. Ok, enough blabbing, check out her posts for yourself.

1. Review of He Was My Chief
2. Knitting–maybe I’m biased since those are my feet modeling the goods.
3. A review by The Girl

Finally, I wanted to highlight is Everything Distils Into Reading.

Gautami has phenomenal tastes in books and poetry, she even writes her own. Yes, we have another multitalented blogger on our hands. Everything Distils is a reimagination of her blog that was “disappeared” earlier this year, and it has been a hard road back, but she has never let that slow her down. I, for one, am glad she decided to keep her blog going and build it back up. Here are some great posts:

1. Can of worms?
2. Wait Until Twilight
3. Mermaids and poetry

What are some of your favorite blogs that didn’t make the shortlists?


Mailbox Monday #47

Yes, it is Mailbox Monday, sponsored by Marcia of The Printed Page, on Sunday again!

Not too many books arriving in the mailbox these days, but I did head out to my local library sale and picked up some goodies for me and for Book Blogger Appreciation Week.

1. Inglourious Basterds by Quentin Tarantino; if you missed my joint review of the movie with Anna of Diary of an Eccentric, click on the link.

2. More of Me Disappears by John Amen from the poet.

3. Alice I Have Been by Melanie Benjamin from Delacorte Press, which I believe I saw in Shelf Awareness.

4. Apologies to an Apple by Maya Ganesan, which Color Online let me borrow for review.

5. Seduce Me by Robyn DeHart, which I won from Pudgy Penguin Perusals.

From the library sale:

6. Hissy Fit by Mary Kay Andrews

7. Saving Fish From Drowning by Amy Tan

8. The Lake of Dead Languages by Carol Goodman

9. Solstice by Joyce Carol Oates

10. The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison

11. Fever Pitch by Nick Hornby

12. The Girl Who Loved Tom Gordon by Stephen King

13. Never Let Me Go by Kazou Ishiguro

14. The Greatest Generation Speaks: Letters and Reflections by Tom Brokaw

I’m sure you are wondering which of these books are for BBAW giveaways, but I’m going to leave you in suspense. You’ll just have to come back during the week to find out.

All week, I’m trying something new for giveaways. If you order through one of my amazon affiliate program images, you will get 5 extra entries into each giveaway and for each book you buy. You just have to email me an order number/invoice.

What did you get in your mailbox?


Book Blogger Appreciation Week 2009, My Best Reviews Links


In case any of you were wondering which five links I submitted for the Book Blogger Appreciation Week 2009 Best Reviews category, I wanted to provide them for you.

I hope these will help you make your decision:

1. Rooftops of Tehran by Mahbod Seraji
2. Keeper of Light and Dust by Natasha Mostert
3. Galway Bay by Mary Pat Kelly
4. The Painter From Shanghai by Jennifer Cody Epstein
5. The Last Queen by C.W. Gortner

As for the Best Challenge Host Category for the War Through the Generations blog, Anna and I submitted these posts:

1. Reviews: The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows

2. Reviews: The Book Thief by Markus Zusak

3. Remembering Hiroshima & Nagasaki

4. Guest Blogger: WWII Reenactor Mauriel Joslyn

5. Valkyrie [Movie Review]

Remember to vote by Sept. 12, 2009, at 11:59 PM


Book Blogger Appreciation Week 2009, Get the Vote Out!

Savvy Verse & Wit is calling on all readers to GET THE VOTE OUT for Book Blogger Appreciation Week.

It’s time to show the love to all those blogs you’ve been reading that talk about books, the publishing industry, and more.

Ok, I have ulterior motives.

Savvy Verse & Wit is up for Best Reviews. I don’t really have a shot at winning, but I would love it if I got some votes. There is some stiff competition in this category, but I’m in good company for this short list.

And my happiest moment and I’m sure for Anna at Diary of an Eccentric too, is that War Through The Generations (our war reading challenge blog, which is WWII this year) is up for two awards–Best Challenge Host and Best Challenge.

Now, I know there are more than 90 participants, so get out there and vote for the Best Challenge Host and Best ChallengeWar Through the Generations.

You’re probably wondering where you go to vote. Never fear, here’s the information:

Book Blogger Appreciation Week Voting

Voting ends on Sept. 12, 2009 at 11:59 PM EST.

Thanks to everyone for reading one or both of these blogs and for voting.

I appreciate your participation, and you’ll soon find that out during BBAW when there are a ton of giveaways and other fun.


BBAW Meme

My Friend Amy and the BBAW busy bees have asked three simple questions that will help readers understand Book Blogger Appreciation Week.

1) What was the highlight (something that happened, a post, an activity, etc.) of BBAW for you last year?

I was thrilled to see everyone visiting the various blogs, even new ones like mine and leaving comments and participating in memes, activities, giveaways, etc. I really enjoyed the posts in which bloggers interviewed one another–that for me helped to shed light on who some of these people are.

2) What is one new blog you discovered during BBAW last year?

Gosh, there were so many blogs I discovered last year, and for some reason right now I am drawing a blank. . . oh, wait, The Magic Lasso and Cafe of Dreams and Morbid Romantic.

3) What tips would you share to help others get the most out of their BBAW experience?

Remain calm–there can be a multitude of activities and giveaways and other events, but pace yourself. This is about building community, exposing yourself to different genres and people, and above all having fun.

Have a great time and go vote for your favorite blogs through August 15!

Book Blogger Appreciation Week 2009

Book Blogger Appreciation Week, known as BBAW, is around the corner, beginning Sept. 14 and running through Sept. 18. My Friend Amy did a beautiful job last year, and this year she has some helpers.

Last year, more than 400 blogs participated in one way or another and awards were given to the blogs winning categories ranging from Best YA blog to Most Chatty.

I even participated, check out my conversation with Anna of Diary of an Eccentric, my Marketing the Poet article, April at Cafe of Dreams’ writing space guest post, and My Interview with Jill of The Magic Lasso.

Have you registered yet? Well, don’t delay! Get to it, register at BBAW’s own blog.

Once you’ve registered, start thinking about what blogs you want to nominate for the awards. Take a look at the award categories and nominate blogs through August 15.

Want the latest updates, follow BBAW on Twitter.

Want more information about this Internet phenomenon? Check out the BBAW About and FAQ page.

Look for some poetry specific posts here on Savvy Verse & Wit, some prizes, and more joint adventures with Anna at Diary of an Eccentric.

Final BBAW Winners Are. . .


Sandy of Mom Forever and Ever is the winner of the one-year subscription to Writer’s Digest! Congratulations!

Jeannie of I Like to Be Here When I Can is the winner of Writing the Wave by Elizabeth Ayres! Congratulations!

Anna from Diary of an Eccentric and I hope this won’t be our last joint giveaway!

We actually have a joint challenge project in the works. . . We promise to let you know all about it once the details are all worked out.

However, while we’re on the subject, Is there is anyone out there who can help us make a banner and some blog buttons, please contact Anna at diaryofaneccentric [AT] hotmail [DOT] com or myself at savvyverseandwit [AT] gmail [DOT] com

Winners of Writing in Metaphor and Imagery for Book Blogger Appreciation Week


Here are the winners, thanks to Randomizer.org

1. Contest Winner for Allan Ginsberg’s Howl and Other Poems is. . .
TEABIRD

2. Contest Winner for Lawrence Ferlinghetti’s A Coney Island of the Mind is . . .
TERRI

3. Contest Winner for a Subscription to Poetry magazine is. . .
ICEDREAM

4. Contest Winner for Sylvia Plath’s Ariel is. . .
GAUTAMI

I will contact you via email for snail mail addresses, but if you see this before you get my email, feel free to send along your address to savvyverseandwit AT gmail DOT com

Congrats to the winners. Thanks to everyone who entered. It has been a fun week. Check out the latest joint contest I have running with Diary of an Eccentric; to enter go here. You can win a subscription to Writer’s Digest.

Thank You BBAW and AMY

I wanted to chime in with my thanks to My Friend Amy for organizing and getting all of the book bloggers involved in Book Blogger Appreciation Week. I had a fun time participating, writing articles, meeting new book bloggers, entering contests, participating in discussions, and getting some great book recommendations from other bloggers.

I wholeheartedly thank AMY for her hard work, and I want to also award her with the following:
Thanks again Amy!

Here’s the list of winners from Book Blogger Appreciation Week!

Best Meme/Carnival/Event – My Friend Amy (Book Blogger Appreciation Week)
Best Commenter/Commentator – Musings of a Bookish Kitty and Rip My Bodice
Best Design – Bookgasm
Best Book Club Blog – Reading Group Guides
Most Humorous Blog – Rip My Bodice
Best Publishing/Industry Blog – Galley Cat
Best Name for a Blog – Bookgasm
Best Challenge Host – The Hidden Side of a Leaf
Best Community Builder – My Friend Amy
Best Author Blog – Neil Gaiman
Best Book Published in 2008 – The Host by Stephenie Meyer
Best Book Community Site – Good Reads
Most Chatty – Hey Lady! Whatcha Readin’?
Most Concise – Bookgasm
Most Extravagant Giveaways – Maw Books
Best General Book Blog – Bookgasm
Best Romance Blog – Smart Bitches, Trashy Books
Best Kidlit Blog – Well Read Child and Jen Robinson’s Book Page
Best Fantasy/Sci-fi/Horror/Spec-fic Blog – Fantasy Book Critic
Best History/Historical Blog – Medieval Bookworm
Best Literary Fiction Blog – Caribousmom
Best Cookbook Blog – Books and Cooks
Best YA Lit Blog – Bookshelves of Doom
Best Thrillers/Mystery/Suspense Blog – Bookgasm
Best Non-fiction Blog – A Striped Armchair
Most Eclectic Taste – Bookgasm
Best Christian/Inspirational Blog – Free Spirit Blogs
Most Altruistic Blog – Maw Books

As for the Sept. 19 contests that ran this week for BBAW, I will announce the winners later today and seek out mailing addresses from you. Otherwise, please still enter the final Savvy Verse & Wit-Diary of an Eccentric contest here and here. You can win a subscription to Writer’s Digest or a book, Writing the Wave. Deadline is Sept. 21 at Midnight EST

Writing and Writing Spaces, Part 2

Day 5 of Writing in Metaphor and Imagery for Book Blogger Appreciation Week

Book Blogger Appreciation Week has introduced me to a number of poets and other writers who also blog. I wanted to get their take on their writing processes as well. Anna at Diary of an Eccentric and I opted to introduce you to two other book bloggers and writers and their writing processes, you can find Anna’s post with Rebekah of Simply Romance Reviews and Ready Set Read Reviews here.

I asked April of Cafe of Dreams to share her writing process with me and the rest of the blogging community.

April finds that writing poems is an expressive outlet, and when ideas come into her mind she jots them down no matter where she is. She branches out from those initial compositions. Sometimes she is writing abstractly because words can form different ideas in the readers’ minds. On the other hand, when she is emotional, she writes words to express what she is feeling whether it is related to a person or incident in her life. She says, “After writing the initial prose, I will often go back and repeatedly change wording until I am completely satisfied with the end result.” I can completely relate to this way of writing. I often write down a few stanzas right off the bat and then expound upon those images and ideas until the poem takes on a life of its own. Once I have a complete poem, I tend to reword it and play with line lengths and word order until I am satisfied that the end result is what I want it to be.

April is as fascinated with people and people watching as I am. She says, “I will often try and create a story that I feel may be going on within their lives. It is just the most amazing thing knowing that there are millions upon millions of people in the world, and they all have a truly unique things or thoughts going on. It is always fun for me to build on those ideas or concepts.”

What I found most interesting about her writing process is that she takes these storylines that she creates and boils them down to one or two pages in poetry form. She also uses dialogue and visuals to tell a complete story to her reader. Her goal is to take these short stories and create a novel length story.

While April does not often rhyme in her poetry, she does attempt to rhyme and try out different combinations of meter and rhyme. She is fascinated by the endless forms of poetry available to writers. However, she does wish that poetry was more of an outlet in today’s society. She notes, “It seems as though poetry is set back in the way of literary importance. Though it just may be that I haven’t found or been exposed to the right area. In any case, personal or professional, poetry of all forms is a wonderful creative outlet.”

More about Cafe of Dreams:

Cafe of Dreams, is my little corner of the world where I can be creative and just have fun. Most of what I cover on Cafe is books and reviews of them. I have started doing book tours and love them! I love to interview authors and have met so many great blogger friends. To sum up, Cafe of Dreams is a place where all your dreams are available on the menu. I cover many genres of books through reviews, write a bit about life and my thoughts and just want a very open and friendly place to express myself.

A poem from April at Cafe of Dreams:

A True Treasure
A kind and gentle spirit
So giving of love, laughter and gentleness
A powerful man – big in stature
larger in compassion
You gave to the world so much of yourself
You gave to your family everything

I will forever remember your wonderful smile, your joking manner
Advice and ponderings, always plentiful, will be so very missed
Visions of holding your grandchildren, treasuring each one dearly,
will forever remain in my heart
Knowing that future grandchildren will miss meeting and knowing
one of the most wonderful men in the world
tugs at my heart
Life will not be the same without you

Hearts break, as tears stream
You were and will forever be, so much to so many
As you look down upon us from your place in heaven,
I know that you will forever be in our hearts
You are a wonderful man, someone so very loved and so very treasured
You are husband, dad, grandpa, brother and son
You are one of life’s true miracles – a beautiful soul both inside and out

As you leave this earth,
you leave us all with one last lesson –
hold each precious moment dear, knowing that life is much too fragile
too delicate to waste a single second
Hold one another close
Never forgetting to say the most important words one can –
“I love you”

~~ In loving memory of my Father-In-Law
Copyright April at Cafe of Dreams

Another friendly reminder about these contests:

1. Diary of an Eccentric is holding a contest for The Almost Moon by Alice Sebold and The Choice by Nicholas Sparks Deadline is Sept. 30

2. Savvy Verse & Wit is holding a contest for Howl and Other Poems by Allen Ginsberg as the first contest for Book Blogger Appreciation Week Deadline is Sept. 19

3. Savvy Verse & Wit is holding another contest for “A Coney Island of the Mind” by Lawrence Ferlinghetti as part of BBAW; Deadline is Sept. 19

4. Bookish Ruth’s contest for The Sally Lockhart Mysteries by Phillip Pullman

5. Savvy Verse & Wit’s contest for a 1-year subscription to Poetry magazine. Deadline is Sept. 19

6. Savvy Verse & Wit’s contest for a copy of Sylvia Plath’s Ariel; Deadline is Sept. 19

7. Savvy Verse & Wit and Diary of an Eccentric’s contest for a copy of Writer’s Digest and Writing the Wave; Deadline Sept. 21 at Midnight EST.

Please also double-check the growing list of giveaways at My Friend Amy’s blog.

Writing and Writing Spaces, Part 1

Day 5 of Writing in Metaphor and Imagery for Book Blogger Appreciation Week

Book Blogger Appreciation Week (BBAW) has me thinking about the writing process, and how different writers respond to their muses or at least begin to write their book reviews. Whether you are a book reviewing blogger, a poet, a novelist, a short-story writer, or any other type of writer, the writing process is often a struggle within yourself, a struggle to find time enough to write, and a journey unto itself. Anna of Diary of an Eccentric and I have known each other for over a decade, and it’s hard to believe we have known each other that long. We both hit it off as freshman college roommates when we both learned that we were writers and taking a correspondence course through the mail on writing children’s books. We’ve been close friends—our husbands even joke that we act more like sisters—co-workers, classmates, and partners in a variety of literary projects.

She and I started talking about our writing processes, and I figured what a great way to start up a dialogue among our book blogging friends as part of Book Blogger Appreciation Week. She and I have had very different processes, and I remember the days when my need for loud music (either musicals like the Phantom of the Opera or heavy metal) while I wrote drove her crazy.

Hey Anna, aka Diary of an Eccentric, I’ve been wondering how you prepare mentally for writing? Does ambient noise bother or inspire you? And does your mood influence what you write?

ANNA: I don’t do much mental preparation for writing blog posts and book reviews. I have a schedule in my head (because I lose all the darn sticky notes), so I already have an idea what to write. But when it comes to my novel and short stories, etc., I try to block out the real-life things that affect my mood (screaming kid, bad day at work, bills) and try to channel my characters. There are times when I don’t have to do much preparation at all, and my pen takes me on some wonderful adventures that I had no idea were inside my head. I can’t write with lots of background noise. I have to wait until my daughter is in bed or not in the mood to bother me, and I can’t watch television at the same time. (It’s so hard to go a day without watching Hogan’s Heroes!) But I have a play list on my iPod where I stick songs that fit the mood of my novel, listening to them helps the words flow. Of course my mood affects my writing! I wrote some of my best poems when I was depressed. Then I had to find my husband and become a mom, which put me in a good mood most of the time, and the poetry muse is either hiding in disgust or gone for good. I don’t mind so much about the loss of my poetry; I’m glad I have a happy home life!

SERENA: You haven’t given up on writing sticky notes because I’ve seen all of those notes all over your desk and books. I remember in college you used to hate studying in the same room with me because I had to have the radio on loudly. I assume that would still drive you crazy.

So would you say that you are like Stephenie Meyer in the sense that you have a play list for particular projects or just a particular play list for creative writing in general?

I think the poetry muse is just pissed you never had any of her children published! Just Kidding.

ANNA: Yeah, I’ll admit I still use the sticky notes, but once I write them, I don’t really look at them again. (What’s the point of writing them, you might ask. I ask myself that, too.)

I think you’re forgetting that it was my stereo, so it was on my side of the room. Actually right next to my desk, so when you’d grab the remote and turn the music up, I was deaf for three days afterward!

As for the play list, I set it up for my novel. Since I’ve been working on it for awhile (I’m going to tell you to shut up before you say anything because I know what you’re going to say!), it’s the only play list I’ve used. If I ever finish this one and start another, I’ll let you know whether I need a new play list.

I didn’t mean to upset the muse…I just never felt the urge to publish my poetry. The one poem I read at the Sigma Tau Delta convention in St. Louis (how many years ago was this??)…I just don’t know if I can go through the rejections with that one. The others are far, far from being ready for publication. You’ll have to publish them for me when I’m gone.

SERENA: Well, you know that I will publish them when you are gone, which I hope is not for a very, very, very (ok you get the picture) long time.

ANNA: As long as the muse doesn’t have a murderous streak, I should be okay!
Anyway…tell me about your mental preparation? Do you need loud music for creative writing, or was it just a way to keep yourself awake while reading that boring political science stuff in college? Do your moods affect your writing?

SERENA: I hope muses don’t have murderous streaks because I could be in trouble; I haven’t had anything published in a couple of years.

In college, I admit that the radio was my way of staying awake while reading that boring poli-sci stuff I already learned in honors history in high school…we all know what happened if I wasn’t listening to music, I was asleep and never made it to my 8AM class. Thank goodness, they invented iPods.

Ok, preparing my mental space first requires the husband to either be asleep or out of the house! When I sit down to write, I must have some kind of ambient distraction. Whether that is music or the television will depend on my mood. I tend to listen to a particular group or genre of songs for the novel and poetry it can be any music. As for the short stories, I tend to work on those in silence or with the television going, which I think is akin to the fact that I find short story writing harder. As you can tell, I am long-winded!

Moods, hmmm, I have a wide variety of those. I used to write poetry only when depressed, but now I tend to be most poetic when I’m contemplative. (is that a word? English grammar and spelling don’t fail me now!) Whether there is something on the television, in the real world, or just something I come across and I have time to the think about it (who has much of that these days) I will jot down a few lines. I also have been inspired by books I’m reading to write a couple lines or stanzas of a poem, which you can find out more about in Jill’s interview of me for BBAW. Anyway, to make the story short, I think poetry is impacted by my mood. Where the novels and short stories come from I have no idea, although there was that one that came from a dream!

ANNA: I think it’s cool that stories come to you in dreams! (Now I’ll assume the nagging friend role…have you worked on that story lately, young lady??) I also remember you jolting awake, climbing down from the loft bed, and rummaging around on your desk to jot down poetry ideas in the middle of the night. That darn banker’s lamp was too bright for my sensitive eyes! Do you still do that?

SERENA: I actually find that poetry comes more now when I am awake on the bus, subway, walking down the street, or just observing something on television or reading a book, among other things. THAT short story is in hibernation until I have fresh eyes to look at it again. I’m following Stephen King’s advice from On Writing.

And it was only that one story that came in a dream!

ANNA: Do you have any other writing book recommendations?
Personally I like The Novelist Boot Camp by Todd Stone.

SERENA: I love Bird by Bird by Anne Lamont and the 3 A.M. Epiphany by Brian Kiteley. I still have not read The Novelist Boot Camp; it may be the army green color of the book that makes me nervous.

So once you are prepared mentally to write, where do you physically plunk yourself down and get to work?


ANNA: Sometimes I write blog posts on the train, but never my novel or stories. I don’t like people looking over my shoulder. At home, I’ll sit on the couch with a notebook and my lapdesk, or if the husband insists on having the TV on, I’ll go upstairs and lay on the bed to write. I’ve always preferred a notebook/journal to writing at the computer. I sit at a computer 8 hours a day for work, and I don’t find those computer chairs comfortable enough to allow a free flow of creativity. I used to love writing outside. When we were at Quinnipiac College (now University, but it will always be QC to us!), there was the view of Sleeping Giant, which was beautiful when the leaves started changing colors. And hiking up to the overlook and writing there was peaceful.

SERENA: So that’s your most unusual writing place, on top of the Sleeping Giant overlook? No computer writing for you? In terms of writing with a notebook and pen, would that change if you had a laptop and not a desktop computer?

ANNA: I don’t know if it would change if I had a laptop. I think I’d be a lot more comfortable when I’m typing, but I really like the way the pen flows on the paper. I guess I’m weird like that.

How about you? Where do you write? What’s your most unusual writing place?

SERENA: Well, you do also like the smell the pages of your books, especially new ones. That is a bit weird.

Poems are generally written in a small notebook or journal that I carry everywhere–on the subway, the bus, in the car, walking–it’s always on my person. I only use those roller ball pens, usually black, but I don’t discriminate if I have a different color handy. I really like the electric blue pens, speaking of how ink flows onto a page. However, there are those occasions that I write poems on the laptop, which can be anywhere from on the desk/kitchen table to the couch, the comfy leather chair my husband saved from the trash man, or the porch. Short stories are written in a variety of college-ruled notebooks, again with those roller ball pens I love so much. They only get typed up when I am ready to say it is finished, and that’s when the story or novel undergoes its first editing process, as I am transcribing my written words from paper to electronic document.

The most unusual writing space for me is probably at the camera shop I used to work at. While developing and printing photos, I often had my notebook/journal out and I jotted down poems or short story ideas. Yes, I was writing away while wearing white photo developing gloves and a lab coat. I must have looked ridiculous.

ANNA: So I’m weird, and you’re ridiculous! We make quite a pair!

Those roller ball pens ROCK, and that’s what I was saying about the ink flowing on the page. I’m like you in that I’ll type after I’ve written and edited things in my notebook.

How about book reviews? You write them at the computer?

I tend to write those in my notebook first…I don’t like the pressure of the glaring white screen (or the uncomfortable computer chair, which you already know about so I’ll stop mentioning it).

SERENA: Book reviews are written on the computer at the computer desk/kitchen table. I don’t write those out beforehand, but then I generally write the book reviews while the book is fresh in my mind. I tend not to wait too long to review what I’ve been reading because I’m likely to forget the details.

And Now for the Contest! To enter to win a subscription to Writer’s Digest or a copy of Writing the Wave: Inspired Rides for Aspiring Writers by Elizabeth Ayres offered by Anna to another lucky winner!: Deadline Sept. 21 at Midnight EST

1. Answer one or all of these questions in the comments for one entry. If you comment here with the answers to these questions and on Diary of an Eccentric’s post, you get two entries, one for each comment.
2. Answer these questions in your own blog for 2 entries, and link back to this post and the one at Diary of an Eccentric; Please leave a link to your blog post.
3. Tell me about your ideal writing space on either my post or Anna’s post in the comments for an additional entry. No double entries for this one.

Another friendly reminder about these contests:

1. Diary of an Eccentric is holding a contest for The Almost Moon by Alice Sebold and The Choice by Nicholas Sparks Deadline is Sept. 30

2. Savvy Verse & Wit is holding a contest for Howl and Other Poems by Allen Ginsberg as the first contest for Book Blogger Appreciation Week Deadline is Sept. 19

3. Savvy Verse & Wit is holding another contest for “A Coney Island of the Mind” by Lawrence Ferlinghetti as part of BBAW; Deadline is Sept. 19

4. Bookish Ruth’s contest for The Sally Lockhart Mysteries by Phillip Pullman

5. Savvy Verse & Wit’s contest for a 1-year subscription to Poetry magazine. Deadline is Sept. 19

6. Savvy Verse & Wit’s contest for a copy of Sylvia Plath’s Ariel; Deadline is Sept. 19

Please also double-check the growing list of giveaways at My Friend Amy’s blog.

Sylvia Plath and Confessional Poetry

Day 4 of Writing in Metaphor and Imagery for Book Blogger Appreciation Week

Today, I want to introduce you to Sylvia Plath, who was more than a poet. She was a novelist and a short story writer as well. One of the first works I read by her was The Bell Jar, which illustrates the mental breakdown of a young woman and is often considered autobiographical. For the longest time, this was the only work I knew of hers. Many have viewed her poetry as confessional, mirroring the poetic works of Anne Sexton and Robert Lowell. Confessional poems often highlight unflattering aspects of a poet’s personal life, whether it is illness, sexuality, or depression.

Ariel is one collection of her poems, it was published after her death along with several others. The only collection of her poems, despite her prolific pen, that was published during her life was Colossus. Shortly after publishing The Bell Jar, Plath committed suicide with the help of her gas oven.

I wanted to share with you one of my favorite poems from Ariel, which was published in Poetry Magazine, a subscription of which is up for grabs here. Here are a few of my favorite lines from the poem.

Fever 103°

Greasing the bodies of adulterers
Like Hiroshima ash and eating in.
The sin. The sin.

Darling, all night
I have been flickering, off, on, off, on.
The sheets grow heavy as a lecher’s kiss.

And now for the contest:

To enter for 1 copy of Sylvia Plath’s Ariel leave a comment here about Sylvia Plath, any Plath poem you know, or anything else poetry related.

For an additional entry, please blog about this contest and leave me the link to your post or email 5 friends about the contest and cc savvyverseandwit AT gmail DOT com

Another friendly reminder about these contests:

1. Diary of an Eccentric is holding a contest for The Almost Moon by Alice Sebold and The Choice by Nicholas Sparks Deadline is Sept. 30

2. Savvy Verse & Wit is holding a contest for Howl and Other Poems by Allen Ginsberg as the first contest for Book Blogger Appreciation Week Deadline is Sept. 19

3. Savvy Verse & Wit is holding another contest for “A Coney Island of the Mind” by Lawrence Ferlinghetti as part of BBAW; Deadline is Sept. 19

4. Bookish Ruth’s contest for The Sally Lockhart Mysteries by Phillip Pullman

5. Savvy Verse & Wit’s contest for a 1-year subscription to Poetry magazine. Deadline is Sept. 19

Please also double-check the growing list of giveaways at My Friend Amy’s blog.

Deadlines for all of my BBAW contests will be Sept. 19, Midnight EST.