Poetry Writing For Beginners

Aren’t we all fond of beautiful poetries? What is that one thing which makes this medium of storytelling a one of a kind? Poetries let you feel a particular moment in the purest possible form. Poetries are beautiful. And the ones who write them are bound to be filled with purity within them. That’s the primary prerequisite for one to be a poet at heart. Phenomenal combination of words make us appreciate the aesthetics, but it’s the core emotion and the range of it which makes us fall in love with poetries at large.

Poetry is filled with nuances, detailings and most importantly truth. Rhyme could or could not be a part of it depending upon the writing style and the need. Meter and rhythm, conventional or unconventional, in some way, contribute to the overall vibe of the poem. But again, it’s important to not let these patterns dictate your writing style. Set yourself free and see what you enjoy the most.

  • The art of writing a poetry

    To begin with, there’s no right or wrong way of writing poetry. The most important elements which make a poem stand out are purity and honesty. This comes before anything else. There are absolutely no rules to poetry writing. Until and unless you are true to your inner feelings and emotions which you wish to express through your poetry, you can go ahead and put those beautiful lines down on the paper. They might or might not be in a conventionally aesthetic flow, but they always need to be filled with truth.

  • Poetry as an artistic storytelling medium

    One of the purest artistic mediums to have existed since centuries, poetry writing allows an individual to be free. Your writing will always be a mirror to what kind of a personality you are, the range of emotions hidden beneath the layers of your skin, heart and mind will all be on display when expressed with honesty. And this makes poetry a very rich medium of storytelling.

  • The merits of consistent and extensive reading

    One thing which will allow kids of young age to become better at expressing themselves through poetries is the habit of reading. Reading extensively is vital for an individual’s linguistic growth. The ever expanding pool of vocabulary and emotions comes handy like nothing else. The more awareness with respect to the ways in which an emotion can be expressed, a feeling can be conveyed, the art of narrating an episode of your life, or an interesting, profound observation, all of this will come across as byproducts of a good consistent reading habit.

  • Balance between substance and style

    Playing with words is an integral aspect of poetry writing. Cracking some super creative permutations and combinations will result in some unimaginable final outcomes. And ofcourse one should be conscious of this. But at the same time it is important to understand that this particular side of poetry writing should never overpower the delicate emotional aspect. In the race between substance and style, always substance should be prioritised and everything else should be tweaked in and modified accordingly. The emotion riding upon your poetry is your very own original piece which should stay unadulterated and uncompromised at all costs.

  • Just write

    Poetries should just be written. Don’t wait for the moment. Don’t prepare. Just start writing as and when you feel like. Write about yourself, write about your day, write about the emotion you are feeling at that very point of time. The possibilities are endless. Why not explore them? Being mindful is important. Notice and appreciate little things in life and develop an eye for detail. The more you explore yourself, the world around you and the more you read, the better you will write.

  • Diversify your reading habits

    In case if you start (and for your overall betterment you definitely should be) reading classic poetries and great poets, try your best to diversify your poetry consumption habits. Try to read and go through as many diverse poets as possible. Don’t get caught up in patterns or specific types. Obviously liking a particular aspect of the conventional poetry writing skill sets is understandable and then building upon the same later could be quite common a habit in young kids, but it is also important to just be flexible and open minded and see what all possibilities this beautiful medium throws at you. It is important to develop your own voice and nurture it over time.

  • Your own distinct voice is your identity

    Having a very personal and a distinct voice is very important in any medium of art and storytelling, let alone poetry writing. Through poems, your personal voice will always come across as more personal and more intimate. It will let the reader take a deep dive into your soul. And that beautiful journey through your heart will turn out to be a memorable one with the right kind of a poetic feel.

  • Write intuitively and respect and acknowledge your inner emotion

    Don’t write poetries as a task or as a project. Write them when you feel like. Write them to enjoy the process and to free yourself, to put out something that’s been waiting to find a place in this world. Once you complete your piece, reading it again should bring a smile on your face, and not only for style but primarily for substance. A good style is like an add on, a cherry on the cake. But substance first, always and forever.

The intention of this blog isn’t to teach you how to write poetries, no one can. That you will have to figure out on your own. And it is extremely important for you to do so on your own, by exploring the poetic side of yours. This medium is too personalized and an intimate one to look up to something or someone else for inspiration and motivation. For that you will have to look within yourself. Because that’s what poems are for, aren’t they?

As the legendary poet Robert Frost once said, “Poetry is when an emotion has found its thought and the thought has found words.” “Poetry is what gets lost in translation.”

Journaling For Kids

Expression is an integral aspect of human lives. It becomes more personal and emotionally intimate when it is your very own experience which you are trying to express. Your thoughts, your ideas, your emotions, your feelings, everything is built upon these little experiences you come across on a day to day basis. Isn’t it beautiful that we have so many stories to tell? Each day is a story, each moment is an emotion. In rare scenarios we notice and acknowledge it consciously while being present in the moment and for a major part of the day we end up absorbing it all subconsciously. But we always feel some or the other kind of an emotion. Articulating these emotions into words and putting them down on a paper is a beautiful activity. We call it journaling.

Just sit down with a diary / notebook / laptop or anything that you are comfortable with and pen down your thoughts every single day. What all you came across on that very day, what were your experiences, any new thing that you noticed, learnt or explored at the school, any moment that stayed with you, any kind of a gesture (either your own or of someone around you that you found special) or any kind of a feeling in general (positive or negative) that’s playing in your head, just put it all down on the paper. Journaling lets you be free, it lets you explore and introspect yourself and most importantly it lets you express yourself.

Journaling simply means the practice of keeping a journal or diary, especially in order to express one’s thoughts. Ideally it should be done in a very quiet, peaceful environment while disconnecting yourself and your mind from the regular hustle bustle.

Let’s go through the merits of journaling one by one :

1. A medium of expression

As repeatedly mentioned above, journaling lets you express yourself. And it is extremely important for kids to develop this habit from childhood itself. Being able to communicate better will just make them more comfortable with their inner selves and their surroundings. Journaling regularly will most likely inculcate this habit within them.

2. Boost in confidence

Regular writing will make kids more confident and more prepared to go out in the world and put their thoughts out in the open. They will get acquainted with the right set of personality skills needed to be able to communicate better and with the right kind of clarity over the course of time.

3. Writing skills

Kids’ writing skills will get honed with regular and consistent journaling. Dabbling with words, ideas and thoughts, articulating and framing the right set of sentences to put across their point in the most authentic possible manner and expanding their vocabulary pool slowly and steadily is only going to help them get better at writing.

4. Channelising and confronting different set of emotions

Anger, laughter, happiness, sadness, melancholy and many such different kinds of emotions can be channelised within and expressed in a very pure manner. Imagine you not breaking a household object in anger but putting that anger out on paper and expressing your feeling through words, isn’t it a far better alternative? And the same could be the case with other emotions as well. Your journal over time would become a home to all your emotions which you have felt at some point of time and you have built this home with utmost care and affection.

5. Therapy

Journaling is often recommended in counselling and therapy treatments for patients to reflect upon their thoughts. In this context, kids might or might not be dealing with stress. But irrespective of that, journaling will always be a therapeutic experience for children. They will be at peace, will become mentally more stronger and will be able to keep a record of their thoughts and emotions while following upon them on a regular basis.

6. Mental exercise

The more you think, the more you introspect, the more you ideate, it will all help the analytical side of yours strengthen over time. The mind will always be in a stimulated state, the ideas will flow and newer, creative thoughts will be in place. It’s in a way a mental exercise, something that will immensely help a child’s brain and his / her analytical side to be in constant motion.

7. Archiving and documenting your emotional journey

With persistent journaling, you are also archiving your inner thoughts over a course of time. It’s like documenting a journey. You can look back and revisit it from time to time to understand where you were at one point and where you are today. The way a large set of photographs clicked since our childhood make us smile as we watch and feel ourselves grow physically from one moment to the other, similarly journaling over a course of time will let you have the archives which will in turn let you witness your internal and mental growth from point A to B, B to C, so on and so forth.

8. Life learnings

As you continue journaling, you will come across a lot of learnings which will be immensely vital for your self growth. It might feel as if we know ourselves really well. We know what we have experienced, what mistakes we have committed in the past, what set of efforts we have put in to correct them and become a better version of ourselves over time. Staying sane has become difficult in the present day and age. This might not be that major a concern for kids at such a young age, but there’s a possibility it might become one in the years to come. So why not prepare themselves to face life years in advance?

The list of pros could go on and on. It’s important to understand that this sweet, little, harmless activity is just going to benefit kids in some capacity or the other. It’s going to help them rise onwards and upwards on an academic as well as on a personal front.

And it is important to stay open and flexible and expand your areas of journaling as and when you feel like. You can even have prompts if you are comfortable with it and let your writing take shape accordingly on specific days. You can even incorporate drawings, sketches, paintings, illustrations or any other artforms in your writings that you love and associate yourself with.

The final goal should always be to be able to introspect, reflect, communicate and express yourself in the purest possible form. That feeling is beautiful when you successfully put out something caged within yourself. It sets you free. It makes you feel better. It helps you know yourself better. It helps you learn and grow steadily. It helps you become a better version of yourself. It makes you appreciate yourself and the world around you.

Calm your mind, sit back and express.

Want to Write a Gripping Story? Here are 4 Key Points!

Going by the mere dictionary definition, A STORY is ‘an account of imaginary or real people and events told for entertainment’. Let’s elucidate the above definition further. The three key words in the above mentioned definition are:

  • 1. People (Imaginary or Real)
  • 2. Events
  • 3. Entertainment

We shall focus on the first two to understand what is known as ‘CHARACTERS’ and ‘PLOT’.

So, THE PEOPLE in the above definition are ‘CHARACTERS’, whereas THE EVENTS constitute to be the ‘PLOT’.

CHARACTERS:

Characters can be human beings, animals, any living or non-living things as well. Characters must possess personality. They are defined by unique characteristics and traits.

Eg. Birbal is witty, Sulley the monster (from movie monster’s Inc) is scary yet very kind, Or Amarendra Bahubali (in the movie Bahubali) is ‘righteous’ and ‘brave’.

Character Want: Character want is very essential for the story to begin and flow. It is want of the character that drives the story. Either the character can have a want from the beginning of the story or it is induced by the external forces. In the film Lion King Simba always wanted to be a king. But the tortoise wanted to win only once he accepted the challenge from the hare.

Character Flaws: We won’t dwell too much on this facet of the character but the flawed characters are extremely exciting and interesting.

Flawed characters are more human and thus believable. The readers empathise more with such characters. ‘Flawed character’ here doesn’t mean a ‘bad’ or ‘unlikeable’ character. Just as an example ‘SIMBA’ in ‘The Lion King’ goes to the restricted territories of hyenas even when he is warned against it. Here, ‘disobedience’ is the character flaw.

PLOT:

Plot is a sequence of events that unfold one after the other in a structured manner in the realm of the story that it is set into. The world where the plot unfolds can also be real or fictitious or a complete fantasy; like in the case of Harry Potter. But, is it enough to merely have Characters and Plot to make a good story..? Certainly not; here we focus on the third element mentioned in the above definition ‘ENTERTAINING’. A story in some way or the other has to be ENTERTAINING.

Though the word entertainment is very subjective in its nature the classic structure of storytelling has decoded few elements if found in the story; makes it interesting and very entertaining.

INGREDIENTS FOR A GOOD STORY :

After studying the age old legacy of storytelling experts and scholars found similarities in great epics. Stories of Panchatantra, Aesop’s tales, Arabian Nights and mythologies like Ramayana and Mahabharata entertain us as they follow a basic story telling pattern. Here without going into greater depths we will try to touch some of the important elements that make a good story.

Following are the aspects to be remembered while writing a story:

  • 1. Theme
  • 2. Conflict
  • 3. Drama (Journey)
  • 4. Good Ending (Climax)

1. Theme:

Theme is a central topic, subject, message or anything that the author intents to convey. A theme can be explained often in a line. It can be a saying or a phrase. Often it is the moral of the story. Eg. The theme of the famous story of tortoise and the hare is ‘Slow and steady wins the race’. OR ‘Slow and steady is better than being quick and careless.’ A story must have a theme. It is essential for the author/writer to have a reason to write a story. Many times the very reason can be to express one’s fear, emotion or experience.

2. Conflict:

There is no story without a conflict. Conflict drives the story forward. A character must be put into a situation that is challenging. A tortoise is challenged to race with a hare. On the offset this sounds not just difficult but impossible. Either an antagonist or the plot itself serves as an opposing force that the character needs to struggle with. Eg. ‘David against Goliath’. The opposing force (either a situation or an antagonist) must be more powerful than the protagonist of the story.

Conflict is both INTERNAL and EXTERNAL.

Eg. Fear of darkness is an example of an ‘internal conflict’ that the character needs to overcome. Whereas fighting with an antagonist or enemy is an example of an External Conflict.

3. Drama (Journey):

The character (Protagonist/Hero) is in a constant quest of achieving the goal (The character want); be it to win over his internal conflicts or inhibitions OR to win over an external force like an antagonist. This journey can only be dramatic or satisfying if the struggle of the character is both believable yet extraordinary. A constant pursuit for the want by confronting various obstacles makes the journey dramatic and powerful. The stories where character want is easily achieved are often boring and dull. Remember what SIMBA had to go through to become a king.

4. Good Ending (Climax):

The end of the story is very important as it leaves a long lasting impact on its reader or audience. It is said that each story has only one possible ending. Many a time an author or writer forces the ending upon a particular story. Such endings are inconsistent with the journey or the drama that unfolds and thus not satisfying or fulfilling.

The ending has to be in sync with the theme of the story. We must note that it is often misunderstood that fulfilling or satisfying story is the one that has happy or positive ending OR the one that ends where the physical want of the character is met with. Many a time want that is not fulfilled by the character makes the end more fulfilling. Most the stories of coming of age or stories that depict harsh realities have such endings. No matter if the end is happy or not it has to be consistent with both the theme and the journey.

Happy Writing !!!