Posted by: jeannineatkins | November 12, 2010

Thankfulness on a Friday

I missed my alliterative chance on Thursday, but I’m brimming with thanks today. So Thankful Thursday does a mash-up with Friday Five.

1. I’m thrilled that Borrowed Names is being considered for the Cybils Poetry Award. And how kind of them to post a review from Laura Purdie Salas.

2. Sara Lewis Holmes blogs today about how reading poetry, specifically Borrowed Names, helps her while revising. I agree it’s a great genre to go to when you don’t want to get all lost and off track in a big novel, but need a bit more than say newspapers for your word fix.

3. Generous Elaine Magliaro interviewed legendary poet and anthologist Lee Bennett Hopkins, and also offered a chance for anyone to pose questions. Not only did we get answers, but one lucky participant, which turned out to be me, won one of Lee’s books. I blogged about Sharing the Seasons, and will be happy to have an inscribed copy of this anthology. Here’s a picture of Elaine and Lee from the NCTE convention last year.

4. The students in my writing class at the Art Studio make me smile. Josh with his enthusiasm for haiku in its myriad forms. Emily with her sweetness and slanting rhymes. Simone’s homage to the wreck of a Barbie doll. Rachel’s passion for self expression, even by way of zombies. Jean-Marc’s sense of direction: my guess is he plays chess. Ian’s determination to get things right. Here are a few of the questions they thought good to ask of their characters: Do you have more of a nice side? How does your mind work? If you had only 24 hours left to live, what would you do? Would you kill someone for one million? Did you get me a present? Have you forgiven yourself for what you’ve done?

5. I’m thankful for plain old moving forward with the writing. Not to say there aren’t twists and turns and moving backwards. But words are stacking up in their slow un-showy way, and I don’t take the muse, who I know can be fickle or finicky, for granted.

I’m sorry not to be participating in Poetry Friday today, but there are some great poems and thoughts to be found at the roundup here:

Have a great weekend, and if you’re a writer, I hope your characters bring you presents!



  1. Congratulations on being nominated for a Cybils award! Well deserved. Enjoy your weekend! Happy writing!

  2. Thanks, Jeni. I hope you have a good weekend, and happy writing, too!

  3. I just came over from Sara’s an had to tell you how much I love the premise of BORROWED NAMES! I am a big Laura Ingalls fan and have written my own verse novel, MAY B., in the spirit of Laura.
    Must ask my library to buy a copy.
    Caroline Starr Rose

  4. Thank you for coming over from Sara’s and for asking your library to get a copy of Borrowed Names. A verse novel dedicated to Laura sounds great — good luck with that. I like how you have two important Ingalls-Wilder family names in your name: that has to bring good luck!

  5. I find reading poetry when I’m working on picture books helpful. It tunes my mind into different word choices, word play, rhythm, rhyme and the power of words. Billy Collins is the flavor of my week.

  6. Yes, picture books and poetry have a lot in common. Every word and sound has got to count. Lucky you to immerse yourself in Billy Collins, where you can get little stories, too. Hope you a great retreat!

  7. Yay on moving forward and on the Cybills nominations! And those are wonderful character questions.
    Have you forgiven yourself for what you’ve done? There’s a story right there.

  8. Thanks, Amy. Yeah, when I read some of the questions, I could hear the intakes of breath after that one about forgiving the self, the audible nods. I think we all have some shade of that story in us.

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