Category Archives: Thursday Door

Embodied door prompt book

I’ve got too much going on today, and all of it is beautiful.

  1. The prompt for October Poetry Writing Month today is mine. Which is both really exciting and a bit scary. It’s different from most, so people might dislike it. I trust they’ll write lovely things anyhow, ignoring the prompt at will if that helps. That’s how we do #OctPoWriMo 🙂
  2. The online, free, fabulous and gigantic Embodiment Conference has started. The sessions I’ve attented so far were great, both for my body and my mind. My role as a volunteer moderator in the Facebook group is challenging. It has almost 35.000 members now, eager to get as much out of the conference as they can. Day 1 had technical difficulties, so that brought (and is still bringing) unrest.
  3. The coffee table version of my book is live on Blurb now, even before the official launch. I uploaded it sooner than expect, because I could offer people an amazing 50% discount until October 16th. The only things that aren’t ready yet are the description on the website and stuff like that. I hope I’ll be able to change that later.
  4. I’m figuring out my book on Google Play Books. It works fabulous for people who own it, but for people who don’t have it yet that page doesn’t look attractive to buy I believe.
  5. There are workshops I need to prepare. They will happen even though they have to be online because of corona measures.
  6. It’s ThursdayDoors, yay! I grabbed the closest doors I could find, and offer them to you.

Doors to nowhere

Doors to know where

Doors to now – here

Doors to – no, where?

Doors to know. Here.

October Poetry Month starts on a Thursday this year, so it comes with doors… I’m happy to be joining both #ThursdayDoors and #OctPoWriMo again.

The pictures of the doors were made in the summer, because I can’t pass beautiful doors without thinking about our weekly door gatherings Over at Norm’s online place.

These doors are prison doors, photographed in a prison museum. I had to make them with my selfie camera, because the normal one on my phone is still broken. The door that touched me the most was the one that had second world war “graffitti” on it. People who had been imprisoned for opposition agains the occupier (Nazi-Germany) had carved their names in the door.

Draft2Digital try-out

When I saw Norm’s door post today, I was relieved to see a lot of beautiful street art. I took this picture because I want to share it with you, but I’m not even sure it has a door… Luckily, #ThursdayDoors is a flexible place.

Corona times have been a rollercoaster these last months. Lockdown, no work, homeschooling, too much work… Strange and exhausting times even without getting the virus.

I’m slowly finding my way back to some creativity. My mother and I can finally continue the work on the English edition of Meer dan wat het oog ziet. We hope to have it ready for preorder soon.

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As an experiment, I’m also making a book to publish through Draft2Digital. My procrastination workbook brought me experience with Amazon and the Google Play Store. For the Dutch edition of the oncoming poetry/photography book I also tried out Blurb, Kobo, and Publish Drive, which got me into the Apple Store and Scribd. This may sound impressive, but don’t forget that being in a store doesn’t automatically means you sell your book. It’s just one in millions, and it needs to find its audience somehow.

Thus far Drive2Digital was missing. All my choices have had to do with which types of file I already had available and which ones I could convert into easily. A long and boring story, but something to watch out for if you ever want to self-publish. In a next post I’ll share some first impressions of the different platforms and distributors. I’ve listened to a lot of podcasts and read a lot of stuff online to figure everything out, but in the end, I like to try everything out to figure out what I like best.

The new book will be called From my skin. At the moment I’m figuring out the lay-out challenges, since a number of the poems that will be in there has an unconventional layout. The poem in the picture beneath is called Ire, and will feature in the book if everything works out well.

Ire2.

 

 

Blue ribbon justice

The blue blooded bastard
looked green around the gills
when was caught red handed

We were tickled pink
as the yellow bellied bugger
got no red carpet treatment

When we got the green light
to give him the pink slip
you painted the town red

This would not be white washed

Blue toothed behaviour
is not a gray area

#NaPoWriMo may be over, but Thursday Door continues. This weekly online gathering of door lovers often brings more than doors. Beautiful sights. Amazing murals. And Norm, our host, outdid himself this week by adding pictures of urban rooftop farming to his door post.

She of next door

I remember when she came to live here
She of next door
She introduced herself and asked for a cup of sugar
She was going to bake a cake and did I want some?

After the day she came to live here
She of next door
She brought me cake
And my cup, now chipped, with sticky leftover sugar

I remember the first week she lived here
Her smiles, every day, her hello’s, every day
The doorbell ringing, she wanted something
every day

After the first week she lived here
We smiled, every day, we said hello, every day
I unplugged the doorbell, I want my peace
every day

I remember the first month she lived here
She tried to bring me cake
With sticky leftover sugar, every day
even after I unplugged the doorbell

After the first month she lived here
She of next door
I brought her my cup, chipped
Filled with sticky leftovers of moulded cake

After that
She of next door
Moved
Her doorknob
Out of sync
With mine
Bloody spiteful woman

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My first time combining #ThursdayDoor with #NaPoWriMo. The prompt at napowrimo.net was to “write a poem about a specific place […] to incorporate concrete details […] can really help the reader imagine not only the place, but its mood.” I browsed trough the door photos my mum sent me, and chose one that has fascinated me since the first time I saw it. It became the starting point for this poem.

Adjusting to closed doors

“Should we continue with Thursday Doors through this current Covid-19 pandemic?” That’s what #ThursdayDoor creator Norm asked in his weekly (door) post yesterday. Most participants were eager to keep going, even if dooscursions are impossible for many of us now. It looks like we’ll keep up the door posting, in any way we can make it work. If we can’t visit outdoors, we can at least visit each other’s doors. And feel part of our loving door community. And help each other with some beauty and human contact.

For me, these are strange times. Life had just gotten back to almost normal after months of broken foot immobility. I was working again, and earning money. I could ride my bicycle again and go places. I could go for walks, not too far and not too fast. And now I’m back to being almost house bound.

I’m not complaining. In my household everyone is healthy. My partner works from home and is still able to provide income for us. My son is not really enthusiastic about having to follow a schedule for homeschooling, but once he likes to learn in general, so not all of it is a struggle.

I guess I’m still in the adjustment phase. Trying to get used again to staying at home so much. Finding my way through the worries I have for people around me. My sister’s family is in quarantine, and both she and her partner are ill. They won’t get tested, there are not enough tests in the country to test everyone with flu-like symptoms.

I find it hard to concentrate on my work. The normally quiet house is filled with people with their own schedule, their own needs, their own plan. My partner is calm, collected and focused. I hope something of that will rub off on me 🙂

For now, I’m listening to Mongolian heavy metal with my headphones on, enjoying the regularity of searching for doors and inspiration for a blog post. I may go out for a walk later, we’re still allowed to as long as we keep our distance to other walkers.

Stay safe everyone! Let’s get through this together.

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A door, and a book preview

A door from Mechelen, Belgium provided by… yes, you guessed it, I’m still sharing my mum’s doors 🙂

De Dutch version of our book is ready. I’ve uploaded a test version (not for sale), so you can take a look what all the work has been about. If you click on the photo you can browse through the upload on the Blurb site.

 

I still can’t believe I managed to translate 20 of my poems from English to Dutch. But is was worth it, now my mother’s friends can buy the book and read it too. We’ll continue working on the English version in March.

For now, I need a break. After the intensive editing we did, all my brain can think of is book-book-book. I’m grateful that my sister showed me what a huuuuuge difference a professional editor makes when it comes to details. I was convinced my mother and I we’re doing a great job at being precise. My sister did The Best job at being precise.

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Nitpicking

When I said to my mum
“Let’s make a book together”
I should have probably said

“Let’s make a book together
that’s unedited and still has mistakes
so we can leave out the part where we
stare at details endlessly and they seem to
change even though we just put them in their right place
and we look at them again and we sent the file to each other once more
and we find yet another detail and we remember we forgot something and I’ll
ask you to change some words because I don’t like the ones I read and where the files gets corrupted and we need to redo a lot of stuff and e-mail with customer service too many times and then redo some editing and oh well let’s not make a Dutch translation now that we’re on it and two digital editions too”.

It will be fun.

(This one is dedicated to my sister, who does editing for a living. I never knew how much patience that job takes. I’m in awe).

This poem deserved a door detail instead of a full door 🙂 My mum provided the picture.

The poem, and all characters and incidents portrayed in this post, are not fictitious.

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Door, recording and book update

This beautiful door can be found in Mechelen, Belgium. My mother provided it, just as the last few weeks.

I’m again adding one of my reading experiments the poem for today. It’s called hell, and if your prefer to read instead of listen you can click on that word. It will be in the book with my mum for certain. We’ve been working hard on restoring everything since the Blurb file broke down. My sister who’s a professional editor has lent us her professional eye. She came up with great suggestions for lots of little details we didn’t notice. You can’t beat a professional!

So maybe, at the end of this month, we’ll get to hold our book – made by three family members. That’s really special to me. My mother also asked me to translate my poems into Dutch because not all of her friends read English well. I’ve given it a try, and to my own surprise I manage translations/adaptations I’m happy with. So now we’ll make both an English and a Dutch edition.

For more doors, hop over to #ThursdayDoor creator and host Norm. I’m a fan. New gems every week. Nice people too.

A new door, another recording and a second anti-procrastination tool

My mother provided today’s door, just as the last two weeks. I’ll need to ask her where she found this pretty one, the file info doesn’t say. I love the colourful contrast.

I’m adding one of my reading experiments as today’s poem. It will be in the book with my mum for certain. Blurb didn’t manage to get the latest version of our document restored, so we’ll have to redo parts. I’ve asked them if they can find out what corrupted the file, so we can hopefully avoid that happening again.

I’m a bit disappointed that I won’t write anything new for today. The teachers of my son’s school are on strike, for better wages and better working circumstances. So we have plans for today. Playing old fashioned games and going to the movies are some. I did write something new yesterday, but it’s not a poem. I’ve created a practical tool against #procrastination, this time about getting unblocked.

For more doors, hop over to #ThursdayDoor host Norm. I’m a fan. New gems every week.

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