Aside

I have more good news for RhyPiBoMoers!

We will be having a Q and A with The Meter Maids

Corey Rosen Schwartz and Tiffany Strelitz Haber!

Meter Maids

Type The Meter Maids in Google Search

 

Save your questions concerning rhyme, poetry and picture books for these 2 awesome writers who will answer your questions live in our Facebook Group on May 7th from 8:00 – 9:00 p.m. Central Time.

I will be the moderator and we will take as many questions as we can in the Hour of Rhyme. Put it on your calendar now and make your list.

You must go to their blog The Meter Maids: Learn to rhyme. Or do the time. that is currently on hold as these two are too busy to blog…imagine how wonderful that must be! Their site is loaded with tons and tons of great information about rhyme and poetry in their archived posts. Isn’t that just the best name for a blog!

You must check it out!

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Today’s guest blogger is a friend who I met at a conference last fall. She is a powerhouse of energy and so kind and supportive…and busy! She is a very talented artist along with being a successful author of the Ellie McDoodle series.

She is actually the first author I contacted to ask for help finding guest bloggers. Not only did she volunteer on the spot but she gathered names and email addresses of some very impressive friends of hers. She sent them an email with my request and her blessing for the event. I can’t thank her enough for helping me get all this started! I was friends with her on Facebook before we met in person and she is exactly as I pictured her, warm, funny and clever. I am so happy she is here today and I can’t wait to read her rhyming picture book when it is published, which I know it will be!

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So, without further ado, I’m honored to present today’s

Golden Quill Guest Blogger

Ruth McNally Barshaw!

 

 

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        Rhypibomo Guest Blogger Badge    Ruth M Barshaw 1

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Some poetry do’s and lots of do not’s

by Ruth McNally Barshaw

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I’m not new to writing rhyme, but I am new to writing rhyme for picture books.
In 1999 as a newly minted AOL Professions chat host (no age/sex/location in our chats), I wandered into a behind-the-curtain forum and posted a little poem. It was answered by another chat host– in rhyme! Magical!! For months we alternated writing rhymes for everyone’s amusement. I fancied myself a decent Shel Silverstein-ish poet.

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Boy, was I wrong.

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Three years later I got into children’s books.
I absorbed the rules:
1. Don’t write rhyme; editors dislike it
2. If you must write rhyme, avoid near rhyme, bad meter, and convoluted wording.
3. Don’t use Dr. Seuss as your style guide. The work won’t sell.

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Afraid, I now avoided rhyme.
As brilliant friends sold stunning rhyme, I thought, “I’m not one of them. Real poets are gifted.” (I’ve always believed greatness in art and music can be taught. Why wouldn’t that also be true of poetry?)

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Ruth M Barshaw 2

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I wrote and illustrated the Ellie McDoodle Diaries and kept busy with a few anything-but-rhyme picture books. If editors didn’t want to read my rhyme, that was just fine; I was busy developing an appreciation for craft and revisions.
But eventually I grew annoyed at the closed, locked, bolted shut doors of the rhymers club.
I decided to learn poetry and rhyme so that if a good rhyming book idea ever came, I could manage it.

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I studied anapest and trochee and iambic pentameter. Bought books on poetry and sometimes actually read them. I tried writing a zoo story in rhyme. Failed. But I did not give up.
I analyzed the structure of rhyming books and listened carefully to my poet friends’ advice.

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I discovered a few things:

The story needs to have everything a non-rhyme story needs:
- the universal in the specific
- relatable, three-dimensional characters readers care about
- situations the reader can connect with
- interesting writing
- a twist ending
- 12-16 illustratable scenes
- rhythm, patterns, spark

It needs to have a reason to rhyme.
Maybe great rhythm is what it needs, not necessarily rhyme.

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It needs sophistication in the rhyme.
Ned held his head in his bed <– boring.
Throw in something about misled, chocolate spread, overhead, riverbed and/or dragon head, and the rhyme perks up a little.

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One day a story idea about music fluttered down from the ether. Surely it needed to be in rhyme.

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I was determined to create rhyme that wouldn’t embarrass me.
I heard Liz Garton Scanlon ( http://www.lizgartonscanlon.com/ ) say on stage at the SCBWI Wild Wild MidWest Conference in May 2013 that it took her 80 tries to get one stanza in All The World to where she wanted it to be.
If a great writer like Liz needed 80 tries to get one stanza right, then it’s okay for me to take 80 tries to get one line right.
(Actually, it ended up taking 107 tries.)

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My manuscript went through vigorous critique group rounds and several brilliant poet friends. Finally I felt it was ready to send to my agent. She likes it and thinks it will sell. Now I’m working on the art, which I hold to the same high standards. We’ll see what happens.

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One thing I probably will not do: reread that poetry I wrote in 1999. Considering what I’ve learned over the years, it’s very likely dreck.

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Bio:
Ruth McNally Barshaw is author/illustrator of the 6 Ellie McDoodle Diaries, and is now trying her hand at picture books for younger kids. See her work at http://ruthexpress.com

Thank you Ruth McNally Barshaw!

 

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RhyPiBoMo Daily Lesson: Wednesday, April 23nd
By Angie Karcher © 2014
Lesson 25

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Rhyming Do’s and Don’ts

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Do’s

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Do write rhyming picture books
Do write poetry
Do read, read, read lots of different types of poetry
Do learn how to use poetic techniques in your writing
Do use alliteration
Do use assonance
Do use consonance
Do use hyperbole
Do use imagery
Do use internal rhyme
Do use reverse rhyme
Do use rhyme effectively
Do use punctuation as you would when writing prose
Do set the precedent for the patterns in your poetry in the first stanza
Do find the rhythm of your poem and follow it throughout
Do learn how to use scansion in your revising
Do learn the common rules and names for poetic feet
Do choose an amazingly awesome title
Do write using strong characters
Do write it, put it away for a month, then revisit it for revisions
Do know your target age
Do find your lyrical voice
Do choose delicious words
Do read your poem out loud
Do let others read it out loud
Do mark spots where others get stuck
Do choose multi-syllabic rhyming words
Do write a clever, humorous or poignant ending
Do listen to lots of poetry read out loud
Do write lots and lots and lots of different forms of poetry
Do continue to write every day

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Don’ts

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Don’t write the typical ABAB rhyme scheme all the time
Don’t use predictable rhyming words
Don’t write sing-songy verse
Don’t try to be Shel or Dr. Seuss…
Don’t ONLY count syllables in your poetry
Don’t submit anything without lots of revision
Don’t mix and mingle many different rhyme schemes within one poem
Don’t mix and mingle many different metric feet within one poem
Don’t be predictable with your story
Don’t forget to write the hook
Don’t forget your story arc
Don’t forget to cut as many words as you possibly can
Don’t forget to write brilliant rhyme
Don’t forget to add conflict to your story
Don’t get stressed over word stress
Don’t think your poetry always has to rhyme
Don’t forget to watch your word count
Don’t give up

 

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There are a few people who have commented jokingly about whether we will have a test on all this material. LOL

Yes, here’s your test…If you know what all this Do’s and Don’t stuff means, you get an A.

I personally have learned what all of this means and then some. If you want to learn something, teach it!

If you don’t understand what everything here means then you are assigned to self-study and to quiz yourself again when you’re done.

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Resources:

Writingworld.com – Eight Things Picture Book Editors Don’t Want
by Penny Lockwood Ehrenkranz
http://www.writing-world.com/children/picture.shtml

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Writing.com
POETRY WRITING- DO, DON’Ts by Dr. MC Gupta
http://www.writing.com/main/view_item/item_id/1345990-POETRY-WRITING–DO-DONTs-winner

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Writers Digest:The Do’s and Don’ts of Electronic Poetry Submission
http://www.writersdigest.com/writing-articles/by-writing-genre/poetry/electronic_poetry_submissions_some_dos_and_donts

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Absolute Rhyme
Writing in Rhyme by Laura Backes, Publisher, Children’s Book Insider, the newsletter for Children’s Writers
http://www.absolutewrite.com/specialty_writing/writing_in_rhyme.htm

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If you are a rhymer, you may have experienced something similar to this…

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Once upon a time there was a children’s author who attended a writing conference where she didn’t know any other writers…
Yes, okay, this story is about me!

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I enjoy attending conferences by myself sometimes because I find that I meet so many more people that way. And…I’m not shy, if you haven’t figured that out by now. Throughout the morning, I quickly met new people and I also met a few other rhymers.

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There is an instant connection when two rhymers meet. Of course it’s fun to bond and talk about what we do but there is also an odd sort of comfort that occurs. The rhymers in the room tend to stick together.

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Why, you ask?

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I think it’s because of the tap dancing elephant.

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The elephant in the room that tap dances around all the rhyming picture book authors, around all the rhyming poetry authors, and sometimes around the picture book authors in general.

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There is definitely a stigma concerning writers who write rhyming picture books.

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They think that we are not really writers.

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I’m certainly not saying everyone feels this way. But, it is an issue.

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As the conference went along, our little group of rhymers grew and we made plans to meet at the wine and cheese book signing that evening.
The wine was flowing and the cheese was aging and we sat and chatted about our craft. It really is the most fun part of going to conferences. A group of other writers asked to sit with us and we all started getting acquainted.

*

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This is how the conversation went:

Them: “So, where are you from?”

Us: “The Land of Rhyme” (no, that’s not really what we said, at least not literally)

Them: “So, what do you write?”

Us: “Rhyming picture books”

Them: “Oh”

Us: “What do you write?”

Them: “YA, MG, Novellas, Fantasy, Dystopia…”

Us: “That’s great! What are you workin……”

Them: “Are you published?”

US: “Not yet”

Them: “Boy, that wine and cheese looks good!”

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“Bam-Scram-Kapow-i-eeeeeeeee!

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They were gone…they really like cheese!

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We sat there giggling because we knew…they were friends with the tap dancing elephant.

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I don’t tell that story to cause friction between writers of different genres. I don’t tell it out of anger or resentment. I tell it because I am ready to dance with the tap dancing elephant, in harmony and maybe she will learn a few steps from me. Maybe she will learn how much I practice my dancing, just like she does.

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We don’t get the respect from many people in the business because of the genre we write. I’m pretty thick skinned and maybe a bit obstinate because this didn’t stop me from continuing to write what I love. Rhyme.

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In fact, maybe it even challenged me to work harder. My goal is to write and be published in rhyming picture books. It is my passion, my joy and my bliss.

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I am now published in children’s non-fiction and in MG biography which I am very proud of. But what I really want to write and focus on is RPBs.

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RhyPiBoMo grew from my desire to educate myself and to help improve the quality of rhyming picture books submitted to editors and to improve the credibility and erase the stigma associated with being a writer of rhyme.

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It has become so much more than that.

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I am shocked every day at the people who email and message me thanking me for hosting RhyPiBoMo. I think rhymers feel that they have found a home here. I am honored and thrilled to be a part of your journey to publication. If this event helps one rhymer become published it has all been worth it!
I have also heard from some who have decided that rhyme is not their cup of tea.

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Believe it or not…I am equally as proud of that.

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I wanted to help writers decide if this is really what they aspire to do…because when done well it is a spewing beast that will rip you eyeballs out and eat them for dinner! But, I can only imagine that the end result, signing a contract for your first rhyming picture book must be compared to how a prince feels once he has slayed the dragon…scorched, exhausted but exhilarated and proud. Proud to know that it can be done with heart, perseverance, a great critique group and a good rhyming dictionary…and some friends who aren’t afraid of the tap dancing elephants.

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As for the tap dancing elephants, last I heard they were tripping over each other, wearing tutus and sobbing in unison…saying something about “I can’t…”

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*You will have to read my elephant poem from yesterday’s post for any of this elephant stuff to make sense.

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This poem was written in your honor, my rhyming friends!

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It’s What I DO!

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Don’ts and do’s,
do’s and don’ts.
I wish you would make up your mind!

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One minute it’s this,
one minute it’s that.
I’m feeling a tad bit resigned.

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I’m darned if I do.
I’m darned if I don’t.
I need all these rhyme facts aligned.

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Perfect rhyme’s in,
but slant rhyme’s in too.
I’m starting to feel so behind.

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My rhyme’s moving mountains.
I’m not backing down!
Ambition and brute strength combined.

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I am a rhymer!
Among the rhyme few,
who choose to be clearly defined.

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You write what you like.
I’ll write what you can’t.
I don’t mean to be so unkind.

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But darn it I rhyme!
It’s just what I do!
While sitting on my rhyme behind…

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So…don’t look down on me
I won’t look down on you
There’s room for us all intertwined.

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Rhyme is important
and so hard to do.
When singing, it’s very refined.

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By Angie Karcher
© 2014

 

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Writing Prompt: Write a poem about whether you are a rhymer or not.

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Okay, now do everything else on the pledge for today and don’t forget to comment on today’s blog post!

RhyPiBoMo Pledge

RhyPiBoMo PledgeRhyPiBoMo Pledge Please comment ONLY ONE TIME below for a chance to win today’s prize! Prizes will be drawn by Random.com next Sunday for the previous week. To be eligible for a prize you must be a registered participant and comment after each days lessons.

The Tap Dancing Elephant Falls Down! Wednesday

Aside

 The Webinar with Mira and Sudipta has been Rescheduled!

 

Mira Reisberg called me yesterday and unfortunately needs to reschedule the webinar

on Friday,  due to reasons beyond her control.

It is rescheduled for May 12th at 6:00 p.m. Pacific Time

This is the link to reserve your spot!

https://wj168.infusionsoft.com/app/page/free_poetry_webinar

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Critique Group Good News!

I will continue to offer rhyming/poetry critique groups on the RhyPiBoMo Facebook Group page. The groups will open up to new members starting mid-week, next week. Then, we will close them again until July. They will reopen to new members in October, January, April and so on…every three months we will open them up for new members.

Please join the Facebook group and sign up on the related post if you are interested

in joining a critique group as soon as possible.

Once the groups are closed, we will keep a waiting list.

When a spot opens up, it will be filled first come first served from the list.

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Last fall I was on some blog somewhere and happened upon the most awesome poetry for kids…it was simple, funny and so clever! Today’s guest blogger was the author of that awesome poetry! I commented  about how much I liked his work. Then I bumped into him again several other times, coming across more of his poems. And ironically, we both ended up competing in Ed DeCaria’s #March Madness Poetry Tournament this month…how funny that we kept crossing paths, but I guess it’s not that surprising as we both share a love for kids poetry!

I am so pleased he agreed to join us today!

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So, without further ado, I’m honored to present today’s

Golden Quill Guest Blogger

Matt Forrest Esenwine!

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        Rhypibomo Guest Blogger Badge    Matt Forrest Esweinne 1

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Sometimes, Two Heads ARE Better Than One!

* Some folks love working by themselves. All alone, just them, their notepad or computer, and whatever inspiration happens to come along.

* And if inspiration doesn’t come along, they sit there and think and ponder and scribble and think some more and force inspiration to show up whether it wants to or not.

* I have to admit, this works quite well for me.

* However, not everyone is like that. Some enjoy the give-and-take of collaboration: throwing ideas into the ring, tossing others out, and being inspired by one’s partner to come up with new, better ideas.

* I now know what that’s like, too, and I can tell you from experience…when two people with complimentary talents take an interest in something, awesome things can happen!

* Earlier this year, I completed a collaboration project with a published picture book author, and the manuscript we’ve written would have never come to fruition without the two of us hammering it out, writing and editing, and sharing back-and-forth via Google Drive.

* I can’t tell you too many details, as the manuscript is being subbed presently, but I’ll do my best to not have you scratching your head in confusion…

* It all started at one of our SCBWI critique group meetings. She had been kicking around an idea for a picture book about a birthday party featuring animals. She wasn’t sure if it would rhyme, or if it was a picture book or board book, or even what the narrative arc might be, but we all talked about it and gave her some suggestions.

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Then a few months later at another meeting, she handed me a piece of paper with 4 or 5 partially-rhyming lines on it. It was still her basic premise, but she had altered it significantly.

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“I’m not sure what to do with it,” she said. “I have this idea, but I don’t know where to go from here.” Knowing that nearly all of my writing is done in verse, she asked if I’d mind looking the lines over and seeing if I could come up with anything.

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So I took the paper home and set it beside my computer. And left it there for a month, or two, or three. I didn’t mean to just leave it there – I placed it there specifically so I’d see it and work on it – but nothing ever really came to me.

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Then one night, I again looked at the lines she had written and a couple of other potential lines popped into my head. I wrote them down and tried to figure out how they would fit into this manuscript. By the time I went to bed, I had ¾ of the manuscript finished, I knew the arc of the story, and had a good feeling that this might be something special.

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Within a few days, I had completed the first draft. I emailed it to her to get her opinion, and her response made me think she might’ve fallen out of her chair when she read it! She loved it, and wanted to work on some revisions to tighten things up. So we threw the project on Google Drive (formerly Google Docs) and began collaborating.

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She’d make changes and leave comments. I’d do the same. We’d email each other ideas, then go back and make more changes and leave more comments.

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This continued for several months until finally, last month, we had completed our 17th – and FINAL – draft. It’s a cute, inventive, and fun book, if I say so myself (hopefully an editor or agent will agree!) but it would not have seen the light of day without the two of us working together.

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She might have taken the story in a different direction, and I would never have written any part of it without her initial query.

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Let this be a lesson. No, make that two lessons. The first is to always be open to new ideas, thoughts, suggestions, and avenues for creativity; just because you love working alone doesn’t mean you can come up with every cool idea yourself. Heck, even Shel Silverstein would lend a hand – or a pen – to folks who were struggling with a writing project.

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The second lesson? To not rush your manuscript. Don’t assume that after two or three drafts, you’re done. As I said, it took us 17 drafts to finally get our manuscript where we felt it should be, and this was after I wrote the very first draft…exactly ONE YEAR AGO.

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That’s right, it was last April that our collaboration began. Can you imagine how long that manuscript would’ve taken if we hadn’t collaborated?

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It quite possibly might never have been written at all.

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* Bio: A voiceover artist and commercial copy writer, Matt Forrest Esenwine has had several adult poems published in various independent collections around the country, including The Henniker Review, Metamorphosis, the Tall Grass Writers Guild’s Seasons of Change, Assisi: Journal of Arts & Letters, and the Licking River Review, among others. In 2012, his poem, “Apple-Picking,” was nominated by the Young Adult Review Network (YARN) for a Pushcart Prize. Matt lives in Warner, NH, and is currently working on several children’s book manuscripts.

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matt@mattforrest.com Matt Forrest VoiceWorks http://www.MattForrest.com http://www.MattForrest.Wordpress.com (blog) http://www.Facebook.com/MattForrestVoice http://www.Twitter.com/MattForrestVW http://www.BostonCasting.com/MattForrest http://www.Voice123.com/MattForrest http://Soundcloud.com/MattForrestVoiceWorks (demos/samples)

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Thank you Matt Forrest Esenwine!

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RhyPiBoMo Daily Lesson: Tuesday, April 22nd By Angie Karcher © 2014 Lesson 24

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Submissions for Poetry Anthologies,

Magazines and Contests

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No matter what you are writing or who you are sending it to, the focus must shift from the writing to the Submission Guidelines! This is the golden key to the door of publication…of course your writing must sparkle but it won’t matter if you don’t follow the guidelines EXACTLY!

* The publisher’s submission guidelines will tell you whether they accept unsolicited manuscripts (unagented writers) or if they prefer manuscripts to be submitted through an agent. Some publishers have windows of time that they accept submissions so do your research well in advance.

* The guidelines will also state if the editors want a full manuscript or a sample of the work, a query letter, a synopsis, or a book proposal.

* Most publishers accept electronic submissions but some still require mailed submissions. As with any written correspondence sent through the mail, always include a self-addressed stamped envelope (SASE) if you want your submission returned. Most publishers will recycle your hard copies if you don’t want them back.

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More resources concerning the submission process: Writer’s Market http://www.writersmarket.com/

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The Art of the Book Proposal (Tarcher, 2004) by Eric Maisel http://www.amazon.com/The-Book-Proposal-Eric-Maisel/dp/1585423343

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How to Get Happily Published (Quill, 1998) by Judith Appelbaum. http://www.amazon.com/How-Happily-Published-Judith-Appelbaum/dp/0062735098

* Anthologies – a book or collection of selected poetry by various authors, chosen by the compiler and usually in the same literary form, of the same period, or on the same subject.

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This is a list from Poetry Foundation of Essential Children’s Poetry Anthologies. Notice who is publishing these “Must Have” books. http://www.poetryfoundation.org/children/essential/ant

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Resources:

* Red Hen Press http://redhen.org/

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How to Submit a Poetry Manuscript to a Publishing House http://www.ehow.com/how_4612158_submit-poetry-manuscript-publishing-house.html

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Literary Market Place http://www.literarymarketplace.com/lmp/us/index_us.asp

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Reading A – Z (Anthology for kids) http://www.readinga-z.com/book.php?id=866

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Boyds Mills Press accepts unsolicited manuscripts from unagented, published and unpublished writers http://www.boydsmillspress.com/writers-and-illustrators-guidelines

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Meadowbrook Press http://www.meadowbrookpress.com/t/General-Submission-Guidelines

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Beware!

* If a poetry contest requires you to purchase the anthology that you are published in, it is typically a vanity press and not necessarily a legitimate anthology publisher. They are certainly not a publisher with high standards or morals and typically everyone who submits is declared “a winner!”

* Please read this information concerning such situations. Apparently The International Library of Poetry is one to avoid! http://loc.gov/rr/program/bib/contestpoems/

* http://blogs.loc.gov/catbird/2012/03/poetry-contests-the-national-library-of-poetry-and-amateur-poetry-anthologies/

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* I post these with a warning to proceed with caution as I don’t personally know anything about this list or any of the publishers… Dr. Clay seems to have been compiling and updating this list consistently since 2007. His site is very sweet and I feel good about its contents but there are no guarantees…

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This is a list of more than 1000 publishers who accept electronic poetry submissions. It was compiled by Louie Clay, Ph.D. D.D., D.D., D.H.L. Emeritus Professor from Rutgers University http://andromeda.rutgers.edu/~lcrew/pbonline.html

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Magazines

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There are many wonderful magazines for kids and the best way to research the magazine market is to hang out at the library and see what the kids are reading, what’s lying around on the tables, ask the librarian what is popular and then, grab a stack and start reading. It is essential that you familiarize yourself not only with the magazine’s style but also their voice. What do they publish? What age group is it targeted to? What is that magazine’s niche?

* Study the submission guidelines. And then study them again. You must submit exactly how they request or it will be refused. They get too many submissions to tweak anything that comes through incorrectly formatted or without contact information. It will most likely be viewed as unprofessional or amateur if you don’t follow the guidelines.

* Poets and Writers.org lists hundreds of literary magazines that accept poetry submissions. http://www.pw.org/literary_magazines

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Well respected magazines to be published in:

* The New Yorker Magazine – adult http://www.newyorker.com/

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Harper’s Magazine – adult http://harpers.org/

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Small Press Publishers Database from Poets and Writers http://www.pw.org/small_presses

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Cricket Magazine Group – children The best part about this magazine, other than its spectacular reputation is the fact that they offer theme lists for each month. They accept electronic submissions. http://www.cricketmag.com/submissions Literary magazines for kids BABYBUG for ages 6 months-3 years LADYBUG for ages 3-6 SPIDER for ages 6-9 CRICKET for ages 9-14 CICADA for ages 14+ Non Fiction Magazines CLICK for ages 3-7 ASK for ages 7-10 MUSE for ages 10 and up

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Cobblestone Publishing – you will find the information for Cobblestone under the link of Cricket Magazine Group above. Nonfiction Magazines for kids Social studies and science for ages 6-14 APPLESEEDS social studies for ages 6-9 CALLIOPE world history for ages 9-14 COBBLESTONE American history for ages 9-14 DIG archaeology for ages 9-14 FACES world cultures and geography for ages 9-14 IGUANA Spanish language for ages 7-12 ODYSSEY science for ages 9-14

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Highlights for Children https://www.highlights.com/contributor-guidelines

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* Contests

What a hodgepodge of contests you will find if you type in poetry contest into Google search…

*

Your initial reaction should be to assume it’s not legitimate and then do your research. – Do they ask for any money? – Do they promise to print your poem? – Do they list any contact information? – Does it sound too good to be true?

   RUN! RUN! RUN!

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Now, here’s the tricky part… Some legitimate poetry contests require an entry fee. Some legitimate contests offer prize money Some legitimate contests require you to belong to their website or magazine Tip Toe carefully through the stepping stones of these contests…trust your instincts.

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Your best bet is to submit to children’s magazines you are familiar with or a trusted blog or website that you are familiar with.

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I have personally won poetry contests where the prize was recognition of my poem with credits on the home page of the blog for a month, or where the website gave me my own page to promote what I like for a month. I also won a writing course scholarship in a contest before. So, you can find legitimate contests and the prizes can be great but you need to do your homework.

* Writers Digest is a great source of information and they host numerous contests throughout the year. http://www.writersdigest.com/

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Susanna Leonard Hill’s blog Something for Everyone in the World of Children’s Books – she often hosts contests and sometimes it is for poetry. http://susannahill.blogspot.com/

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More warnings about fraudulent contests from Winning Writers http://winningwriters.com/resources/category/scam-busting

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Winning Writer’s Annual Poetry Contests http://winningwriters.com/ Scroll to the bottom of the page for details

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Wergle Flomp Humor Poetry Contest Prizes: $2,000 Deadline: April 1, 2014 No Fee!

* Tom Howard/John H. Reid Fiction & Essay Contest Prizes: $3,000 Deadline: April 30, 2014

* Sports & Fiction Essay Contest Prizes: $3,000 Deadline: May 31, 2014

* Tom Howard/Margaret Reid Poetry Contest Prizes: $3,000 Deadline: September 30, 2014

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And of course, there’s The Golden Quill Poetry Contest! Entries are due this Saturday, April 26th by midnight.

RhyPiBoMo Poetry Contest Scroll

 

http://angiekarcher.wordpress.com/rhypibomo-golden-quill-poetry-contest/ I can’t wait to read your poetry!

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There’s no writing prompt today…enjoy a day of catching up!

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Okay, now do everything else on the pledge for today and don’t forget to comment on today’s blog post!

RhyPiBoMo Pledge

RhyPiBoMo PledgeRhyPiBoMo Pledge Please comment ONLY ONE TIME below for a chance to win today’s prize! Prizes will be drawn by Random.com next Sunday for the previous week. To be eligible for a prize you must be a registered participant and comment after each days lessons.

Lots and Lots and Lots of Resources Tuesday!

Aside

Mira's Bear

Please remember to sign up for the webinar with Mira and Sudipta on Friday.

“3 Things You Must Know About Writing Rhyming Kids’ Books” April 25th, at 6:00 PM!

Here is the link to reserve your spot

https://wj168.infusionsoft.com/app/page/free_poetry_webinar

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You should also consider taking this poetry course with Sudipta and Mira!

This dynamic duo will be extraordinary, I’m sure of it!

Anyone who has taken one of Mira’s classes will tell you…she is truly amazing and a very generous teacher. I have been blessed to take 2 of her classes. I highly recommend this course!

Poetry course

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I hope you are busy writing your poems for the Golden Quill Poetry Contest!

The deadline for the contest is this Saturday at midnight, Central Time.

RhyPiBoMo Poetry Contest Scroll

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Today’s guest blogger contacted me after agreeing to participate and asked what she should write about…I really appreciated her offer to discuss a topic that I felt was important! So…I told her that I needed someone very brave to write about the cold, hard facts of writing rhyming picture books…as we are quickly approaching the Picture Book part of our month, the timing was perfect for her to lay it all out there, honestly and matter-of-factly. She did not disappoint!

Now that you see how difficult it is to write good poetry/rhyme you must hear how hard it really is to write a rhyming picture book. You came here to learn and improve your craft and I feel that it is my obligation to share the truth about this genre we have chosen.

So…Put your Big Girl/Big Boy Pants on and have a seat because Tiffany is here to share the good, the bad and the ugly about RhyPiBos!  Afterwards…if you still decide to pursue this genre, hold on tight and carry on! I will be right there with you!

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So, without further ado, I’m honored to present today’s

Golden Quill Guest Blogger

Tiffany Strelitz Haber!

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        Rhypibomo Guest Blogger Badge    Tiffany Haber 1

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The Power Of Rhyme: A Cautionary Tale

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Warning:

This post is not sugar coated. Please proceed with caution…

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Rhyme is a beautiful thing. It has the power to be melodic, humorous, engaging, fun and addictive. I am a huge, undeniable fan of great rhyme. But what you may not know…is that rhyme has a dark side.

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An evil beast side that will suck character development right out of your manuscript. Yep. A side that will systematically remove plot from every story.

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Take arc, spin it around over its flaming, horned head and fling it out the window.
Rhyme will eat your brain for breakfast and rhyme may very well ruin your chances of getting published.

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You see, for some reason, when most people start rhyming, they stop writing.

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They stop caring about everything that makes picture books beautiful. They forget all about subtle nuances and humor. They completely overlook arc and twist endings. They remove all evidence of fabulous yet flawed characters that readers can simultaneously empathize with and root for. What do they do instead? They focus solely on whether the last words in their sentences are BAT, MAT and CAT, and it renders the rest of the book unreadable.

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And by the way, if rhyme is a beast, then meter is the poison venom he spews while laughing maniacally as you bang your head endlessly against the concrete wall. Because far more difficult than rhyming your words…is nailing your meter. And you MUST nail your meter. An editor can smell poor meter from a mile away, and I promise you this- they won’t even read your story. It’s just too painful.

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I warned you this post would be harsh…but so is rejection. And therefore, so is this industry. And the ONLY reason you should attempt to write your manuscript in rhyme…. is if you simply MUST. You are obsessed with rhythm, unstressed and stressed beats, internal rhyme, rhyme scheme, rhymezone.com, scansion…all of it. Seriously. Because unless you are THAT into everything I just mentioned, instead of a beautiful picture book, you will wind up with 500 powerless words. And what’s worse than that?

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When I first began attending SCBWI conferences, I too was told I should write my stories in prose, and forget all about rhyme. But I didn’t. I couldn’t. I KNEW that rhyme was in my DNA and I simply HAD to do it. So I did. And here I am telling you not to. So what gives? Well, if you can read everything I’ve just written- all the warnings and all the rationale NOT to go down the rhyming road…but you still feel like you must…then give it a shot. Because there ARE beautiful, humorous, lovely, amazing rhyming picture books out there. And if you believe in your heart of hearts that you can write one…then go for it!

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But be careful. And be honest with yourself about your ability to rhyme and to nail your meter. (All while simultaneously executing a creative plot, fantastic characters that your reader can love and root for, a storyline that begins, arcs and ends seamlessly in a about 500 words, and leaves the reader wanting to close the book- flip to the beginning, and read it all over again.)

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Can you do it?

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Your ability to be impartial and objectively answer that question will most likely mean the difference between getting published, and living in the slush.

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Just remember: Rhyme is not a gimmick that will help you get published. It is a trick that might ensure you never do.

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Bio:

Tiffany Strelitz Haber is a rhyming children’s book author, represented by Teresa Kietlinski of The Prospect Agency. To learn more about Tiffany, please visit her website: http://www.itsrhymetime.com
and her facebook author page: http://www.facebook.com/tshauthor@tiffrhymes

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 Here are two of her books:

Tiffany Haber 3

THE MONSTER WHO LOST HIS MEAN (Holt/Macmillan, 2012)

NEW! check out “Monster” in the NY Times Sunday Book Review: click here!
http://www.itsrhymetime.com

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OLLIE AND CLAIRE (Philomel/Penguin, 2013)

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Thank you Tiffany Strelitz Haber!

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RhyPiBoMo Daily Lesson: Monday, April 21st
By Angie Karcher © 2014
Lesson 23

This lesson covers more crazy-fun forms of poetry!

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Alphabet Poetry (write these down)

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There are quite a few types of alphabet poems:
>The first letter of each word is a letter of the alphabet, in order, but you don’t need to use all of the alphabet, you can use just a few as long as they are in order. You don’t have to start with A.
Here are a few of my attempts:
Apple
Bites
Crunchy
Delicious
Enjoy
By Angie Karcher © 2014

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>The first word in each line begins with a letter of the alphabet. As above, you don’t need to use more than a few lines but they must be in alphabetical order.

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Lions roar with a
Mighty voice.
Naughty sounding
Ornery
Puss.
Quit it!

By Angie Karcher © 2014

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>All words in each line begin with the beginning letter in the sentence.

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Quit Quarrelling
Respect, Reach-out, Reassure
So Sweetly Someone Swoons
To The Tune That’s
Uplifting, Unanimous
By Angie Karcher © 2014

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There are 2 sites with fun examples for you to check out:
Poem Hunter

http://www.poemhunter.com/poem/alphabet-poem-2/

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Poetry Soup

http://www.poetrysoup.com/poems/alphabet

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Acrostic Poetry – A poem where the first letter of each line spells out a word, name, or phrase. (write this down)

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Okay, this one is fun and there are even sites that will do it for you…really! LOL

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http://www.acrosticpoem.org/

At Acrostic Poem.org all you have to do is type your name in the box and you get a beautiful poem! This is the one they generated for me…

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A is for Alluring, so attractive
N is for Noble, self-sacrificing
G is for Grateful, ever appreciative
I is for Intelligent, quickness of mind
E is for Elegant, so graceful
Oh, if only I had written this about myself…LOLOL

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Here is the one I wrote:
A lady who
Needs some
Good old-fashioned anti-
Internet
Entertainment in May!
By Angie Karcher © 2014

This, from the lady who decided to run a month-long writing challenge! = )
I’m just kidding! I’m having the time of my life!

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Invented Poetry – is just that, poetic forms invented by various poets and named by them…Talk about opening the poetry floodgates!

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There are unimaginable numbers of invented poetic forms and they continue to grow daily. This link to Shadow Poetry below will take you to a huge list of traditional poetic forms, many that we have not covered, but it will also offer a really interesting list of invented poetry, with the rules of each. Shadow Poetry also allows authors to add new poetic forms of invented poetry.

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Shadow Poetry

http://www.shadowpoetry.com/resources/wip/types.html

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So…I challenge you to create your own poetic form and submit it to Shadow Poetry!

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Shadow Poetry
1209 Milwaukee Street
Excelsior Springs, MO 64024
USA
You can also contact the site admin by email for more information.

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A Hidden Word Poem:

This is a Hidden Word poem I wrote that has the word HOME hidden in each stanza. This word is the answer to the child’s question. This is as close to a rap as I’ve ever written. I’ve read this before with a drum beating 4 counts in the background… I’ve also had a few adults chant “Where we goin?” in the background while I read… it was very powerful!
Today I’m sharing poetry I’ve written as I’ve not been able to write much this month and I’m dying to write and share! Thanks for reading…

See if you can find the rest of the HOME words in each stanza…they letters are capitalized.

*This is from an anthology of poems about the UGRR and the Civil War

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WHERE WE GOIN’? by Angie Karcher ©2008

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The mornin’ sun’s stretchin’ Her arms today.

Wakin’ at first light, got nO time to play.

The watchman’s a watchin’ so’s we don’t stray.

Follow Mama and Papa over orchard’s way.

“WherE we goin’?”

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The noon sun’s givin’ me a sweaty Hug.

Wakin’ achin’ back muscles with ditches dug.

The watchman’s a drinkin’ with a mighty chug.

FOllow Mama and Papa. Give her skirt a tug.

“WherE we goin’?”

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The evenin’ sun’s leavin’ us wavin’ bye.

Wakin’ thoughts of escapin’ makes Mama cry.

The watchman’s a sleepin’. His jug is dry.

FollOw Mama and Papa as Eagles fly.

“Where we goin’?”

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The night moon cradles us in His light.

Wakin’ hound dOgs, barkin’, chasin’ us tonight.

The watchman’s a huntin’ dog’s are sniffin’ right.

Follow Mama and Papa, as I hug em’ tight.

“Where wE goin’?”

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The dusk moon’s pointin’ to the drinking gourd.

Wakin’ rain, washin’ tracks, as we praise the Lord.

The watcHman’s a swearin’ as the blessin’s poured.

FollOw Mama and Papa to our great reward.

“Where wE goin’?”

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The mornin’ sun’s stretchin’ Her arms again.

Wakin’ achin’ sOre feet from walkin’ where we been.

The conductor’s a greetin’ with a Northern grin.

Follow Mama and Papa meetin’ railroad mEn.

“Where we goin’?”

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“HOME, child.”

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Here are a few examples of invented poetry:

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The Brevette – created by Emily Romano

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The Rules:
This poem consists of a subject (noun)
Verb
object (noun)
in this exact order. The verb should show an ongoing action. This is done by spacing out the letters in the verb, where instead of saying the word that is the verb, the reader spells out the word. There are only three words in the poem, giving it the title Brevette. There is no limit or rules concerning syllables but it is suggested that the words have a good balance, as a whole.

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My attempt…

Writer

w-r-i-t-i-n-g

Books

By Angie Karcher © 2014  (I had SO much more I wanted to say!)

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Invented forms from a site called Poetry Magnum Opus:

http://www.poetrymagnumopus.com/index.php?/topic/2192-invented-forms-from-poetry-styles/

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The Acronet – by Patricia A Farnswort-Simpson 2008

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This poem is a combination of an Acrostic (an acrostic, the first letter of each line when read vertically spells out a phrase) and a Nonet. (A nonet has nine lines. The first line has nine syllables, the second line eight syllables, the third line seven syllables, etc… until line nine finishes with one syllable. It can be on any subject and rhyming is optional.)
I didn’t get past this one before I had to try it!

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The Rules:
A poem in 18 lines made up of 2 nine line stanzas.
Syllabic, 9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1 1-2-3-4-5-6-7-8-9 syllables per line.
Rhymed at the discretion of the poet.

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My poem:

Eleph-anti-tastic Dancing!
By Angie Karcher © 2014

9 Elephants “TIP-TAP-TOE” to the beat
8 Little “TIPS,” big “TAPS,” huge toed feet
7 Elephants wear tutus too
6 Plumes of organza-blue
(I REALLY wanted to write “Organza colored plumes of blue” but It had to start with a P and have 6 syllables) darn it!
5 Herds of elephants
4 All in a row
3 Neatly now…” (Teacher)
2 “TIP-TAP”
1 “SMASH!” (You wanted it to be “TOE” didn’t you!)

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1 “TRIP”
2 “I can’t” (Elephant)
3 Pleʹa now (Teacher)
4 “TOE-TAP-TRIPPING”
5 An elephant row
6 Pachyderms, oh so blue
7 They sob tears with tutus too
8 Once, a tip-tap-toed-up floor…
9 Elephants “TIP-TAP-TOING” no more!

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My Process:
>I had to come up with a phrase that had 18 letters (ELEPHANTS TIP TAP TOE) This makes it an Acrostic Poem.
>I had to start counting syllables
>I had to begin to tell a story
>I wrote the last line so I knew where I was going
>I added in elephant and dancing terms
>I added in onomatopoeia (“Tip” “Tap” “Smash” “Trip”)
>I added alliteration (tip-tap-toe)
>I added homographs (row – in a line/row – struggle or scuffle)
>I added homophones (blue – color/ blue – sad)
>I added the teacher’s voice (underlined)
>I added an elephant talking (“I can’t”)
>I added repeating lines (tutus too)
>Last line in first stanza, (SMASHED) intentionally non-rhyming signify impending disaster
>The rhyming words are color coded
>I added Portmanteaus in the title inspired by Cinderellaphant by Dianne de Las Casas It combined Elephant – Anti – and Fantastic

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Here it is now without all the distractions…

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Elephantitastic Dancing!

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Elephants “TIP-TAP-TOE” to the beat
Little “TIPS,” big “TAPS,” huge toed feet
Elephants wear tutus too
Plumes of organza-blue
Herds of elephants
All in a row
“Neatly now…”
“TIP-TAP”
“SMASH!”
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“TRIP”
“I can’t”
“Pleʹa now”
“TOE-TAP-TRIPPING”
An elephant row
Pachyderms, oh so blue
They sob tears with tutus too
Once, a tip-tap-toed-up floor…
Elephants “TIP-TAP-TOEING” no more!

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This was so much fun! And boy, if you think meter is tough, try it in lines that don’t leave much room for rhythm with decreasing and increasing syllables…whew! It needs work but I loved this challenge!

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I enjoyed the word play, such as the surprise word in line 9 of the first stanza. You want it to be “Toe” but I had an S and “Smash” fit much better with the impending, elephant, dancing disaster.

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I tried to match the rhythm of the poem with the failing tap dancing efforts of the elephants. It got worse as it went along. Don’t even talk to me about feet in this one…I was tripping with the elephants! I don’t love the ending and I want to keep working on it but I feel like time stood still like a herd of dancing pachyderms!

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I spent about an hour on this which was way more time than I planned but I was hooked…that’s why I know I MUST write poetry! LOL

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The Sound of Poetry Review is a great contemporary poetry resource:

http://thesoundofpoetryreview.wordpress.com/invented-poetry-forms/

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Apple Poem

It felt good to do some writing today!

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2 Part Writing Challenge: 1) Write an Acronet! Have fun with it!
2) Then, invent your own poetry form and PLEASE share it in Pearls of Poetry!

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Okay, now do everything else on the pledge for today and don’t forget to comment on today’s blog post!

RhyPiBoMo Pledge

RhyPiBoMo PledgeRhyPiBoMo Pledge
Please comment ONLY ONE TIME below for a chance to win today’s prize!
Prizes will be drawn by Random.com next Sunday for the previous week.
To be eligible for a prize you must be a registered participant and
comment after each days lessons.

A Cautionary Tale of Writing Rhyming Picture Books!

Aside

Happy Sunday!

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Deborah Underwood 3

And how can I not mention Deborah Underwood’s adorable book

HERE COMES THE EASTER CAT today?

If you haven’t read it, grab a copy quick!

Please enjoy your family time today!

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The Winners of the Daily Prizes for last week:

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 Sunday’s Winner – Helen Kemp Zax wins Freight Train Trip donated by Susanna L. Hill

Monday’s winner – Sarah Harroff wins a Book Choice donated by Debbie Diesen

Tuesday’s winner  – Holly Sigismondi wins Bad Bye, Good Bye donated by Deborah Underwood

Wednesday’s winner – Monica Gudlewski wins I Hatched donated by Jill Esbaum

Thursday’s winner  – Laurie Gray wins Step Gently Out donated by Helen Frost

Friday’s winner – Doris Stone wins a critique by Correy Rosen Schwartz

Saturday’s winner -  Kenda Henthorn wins Pet Project donated by Lisa Wheeler

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Winners…please email me at Angie.karcher@yahoo.com as soon as possible with your address!

Congratulations and thanks for participating!

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Today’s guest blogger was once described to me by another author who is friends with her as “Saucy” as well as a being “talented, gifted, amazing and powerful with her writing and her storytelling.”

She wears many different hats and they all involve working with and educating children. She was recently named the Intenational Reading Association LEADER 2014 Poet Laureate. I hope one day we will meet as I am a huge fan of her books!

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So, without further ado, I’m honored to present today’s

Golden Quill Guest Blogger

Dianne de Las Casas!

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        Rhypibomo Guest Blogger Badge    Dianne de Las Casas 1

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Using Picture Books to Teach Figurative Language

By Dianne de Las Casas

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I love picture books. I love them for their beautiful illustrations and their poetic rhythm. This seemingly simplistic form of literature is full of rich language and literary devices. It’s a perfect way to teach students the elements of figurative language. The examples of the various types of figurative language are underlined.

dianne 1

Alliteration
The repetition of the same sounds at the beginning of words in a phrase or sentence is known as alliteration. For example, in Matthew Gollub’s book, The Jazz Fly:

“Willie the Worm inched
up and down his bass:
Bi-BIM-bum
BOM-bum,
BIM-BIM-bum
BOM-bum…”

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The alliteration comes from Bs of Willie strumming the bass.

dianne 2

Hyperbole
A hyperbole is an extreme exaggeration used to make a point. It is used to add color and humor to a fiction story, often bordering on monumental and ridiculous. In Tara Lazar’s book, The Monstore, about a boy who tries to buy monsters to control his little sister, Tara has a great example of hyperbole in a passage about a tiara.

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“Zack was tempted to leave that glitzy, glittery thing right there, but Gracie was right. It was pretty hideous. That monstrosity had more spikes than crab-leg casserole. Slowly and carefully, Zack rid the room of the tiara terror.”

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The fact that a tiara is scarier than a roomful of mangy monsters is pretty funny and ironic.

dianne 3

Metaphor
A metaphor is a figure of speech that compares one unrelated subject to another to show that they are similar. In Carmen Agra Deedy’s book, Return of the Library Dragon, the sequel to The Library Dragon, Ms. Lotta Scales is dismayed that the IT guy, Mike Krochip, took away all the books and turned the library into a “cybrary.” Here is an example of a metaphor in the book:

“I wouldn’t go in there if I were you!” he cried. “That librarian’s a REAL dragon!

dianne 4

Onomatopoeia
Onomatopoeia is the formation of a word that is created from the sound that is made. Superhero comics are full of them with words like “BAM!” “POP!” and “POW!” In Candace Fleming’s book about naughty bunnies, Muncha! Muncha! Muncha!, even the title is an example of onomatopoeia.

“And the sun went down. And the moon came up. And-

Tippy-tippy-tippy,
Pat!

Dive-paddle,
Splash!
Splash!
Splash!”

dianne 5

Personification
Personification is the act of assigning human characteristics or qualities to an inanimate object. Amy Krouse Rosenthal’s book, Spoon, is a shining example of the clever use of personification.

“At bedtime, Spoon likes to hear the story about his adventurous great-grandmother, who fell in love with a dish and ran off to a distant land.”

Simile
A simile compares words in a sentence, usually using the words “as” or “like.” In Eric Kimmel’s book, Little Red Hot, a spicy retelling of Little Red Riding Hood, Little Red Hot makes a pepper pie for grandma. In the end, she feeds it to Señor Lobo (Mr. Wolf). Here is a terrific example of simile from the book:

He shot straight up like a rocket, right through the ceiling of Grandma’s bedroom, trailing fire and smoke as he went.”

dianne 6

Portmanteaus
A portmanteau is a combination of two or more words and their definitions into one new word.
In my picture book, Cinderellaphant, “Cinderella” and “Elephant” were combined. The story is a remix of the classic “furry tale” featuring a pachyderm princess.

Dianne DeLas Casas 2

Another great example of a portmanteau is The Snatchabook by Helen and Thomas Docherty. The Snatchabook (snatch a book) is a little creature who steals all the books.

Rhythm, rhyme, and repetition in a picture book can be greatly enhanced through the use of figurative language. Try it! It’s as easy as pie.

Dianne DeLas Casas 3

Bio:
Dianne de Las Casas is an award-winning author, storyteller, and founder of Picture Book Month. Her performances, dubbed “revved-up storytelling” are full of energetic audience participation. The author of 23 books, Dianne is the International Reading Association LEADER 2014 Poet Laureate, and the 2014 recipient of the Ann Martin Book Mark award. Her children’s titles include The Cajun Cornbread Boy, There’s a Dragon in the Library, The Little “Read” Hen, The House That Santa Built, and Cinderellaphant. Visit her website at diannedelascasas.com. Visit Picture Book Month at PictureBookMonth.com. Twitter: @AuthorDianneDLC Facebook: fanofdianne

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Dianne is also the mom and manager of the very talented and famous

Kid Chef Eliana!

dianne 7

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Thank you Dianne de Las Casas!

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RhyPiBoMo Daily Lesson: Sunday, April 20th
By Angie Karcher © 2014
Lesson 22

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Personification – is a figurative language technique where an object or idea is given human characteristics or qualities. In other words, using our language, we make an object or idea do something that usually is only done by people.(write this down)

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Personification gives a deeper meaning to writing. It adds interest and expression as we view the world from a human eye. Writers and poets rely on personification to bring inanimate things to life, so that their nature and actions are understood in a better way. It is often easier for readers to relate to something that is human or that possesses human traits. Its use encourages us to develop a new creative perspective.

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For example:
The subject is underlined and the personification is in red.

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The stars danced playfully in the moonlit sky.
The run down house appeared depressed.
The first rays of morning tiptoed through the meadow.
She did not realize that opportunity was knocking at her door.
The bees played hide and seek with the flowers as they buzzed from one to another.
The wind howled its mighty objection.
The snow swaddled the earth like a mother would her infant child.
Time flew and before we knew it, it was time for me to go home.

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Now try it on your own…underline the subject and circle the word or phrase that is personified.
The door protested as it opened slowly.

The evil tree was lurking in the shadows.

The tree branch moaned as I swung from it.

Time marches to the beat of its own drum.

The storm attacked the town with great rage.

My life came screeching to a halt.

The baseball screamed all the way into the outfield.

The blizzard swallowed the town.

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http://examples.yourdictionary.com/examples-of-personification.html

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An example in literature:
William Blake personifies Sunflowers in his poem “Two Sunflowers Move in a Yellow Room”.

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“Two Sunflowers
Move in the Yellow Room.

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‘Ah, William, we’re weary of weather,
said the sunflowers, shining with dew.
Our traveling habits have tired us.
Can you give us a room with a view?”

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The flowers are depicting a human characteristic of weariness caused by the weather. In a human way, they make a request to the poet to put them in a room with a window with plenty of sunshine.

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http://literarydevices.net/personification/

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While in the neighborhood of talking objects, I thought we should discuss talking animals…

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Anthropomorphism – is a form of personification that gives human characteristics to non-humans or objects, especially animals. It has some major benefits, such as helping to get complex ideas across. This is very common and controversial in children’s literature.(write this down)

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My favorite anthropomorphic children’s book is Charlotte’s Web by E.B.White

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Here is a list of popular anthropomorphic children’s books:

https://www.goodreads.com/shelf/show/anthropomorphic

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While researching anthropomorphism, I came across this interesting paper written by Elizabeth A. Dunn called Talking Animals: A Literature Review of Anthropomorphism in Children’s Books.

A Master’s Paper for the M.S. in L.S. degree. May, 2011 Very interesting!

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http://dc.lib.unc.edu/cdm/ref/collection/s_papers/id/1419

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In the above mentioned Master’s Paper, the Elizabeth A. Dunn mentioned the Database of Award Winning Children’s Literature (www.dawcl.com), an extensive database created by librarian Lisa Bartle. Also very interesting!

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Here’s the link: http://www.dawcl.com/

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I also came across a Prezi by Loretta Holmberg titled Anthropomorphism in Children’s Literature. Very thorough!

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http://prezi.com/zbvjhxueneec/anthropomorphism-in-childrens-literature/

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These are some suggestions in the Prezi above by Loretta Holmberg of anthropomorphic children’s books:
WOLF by Becky Bloom (2009)
The World Around Us by Rosemary Wells (2001)
Berenstain Bears Don’t Pollute (Anymore) by Stan & Jan Berenstain (1991)
Toot & Puddle by Holly Hobbie (1997)
Days with Frog & Toad by Arnold Lobel (1979)
Koala Lou by Mem Fox (1988)
Julius The Baby of the World by Kevin Henkes (1990)
Olivia by Ian Falconer (2000)
Arthur’s Perfect Christmas by Marc Brown (2000)
Angelina Ice Skates by Katharine Holabird (2000)

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The controversy over talking animals seems to have eased these past few years but here is an article that addresses this very subject titled “Straight Talk About Talking Animals” by Laura Backes, Publisher of Children’s Book Insider, the Newsletter for Children’s Writers

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http://www.fictionfactor.com/children/animals.html

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CBI logo

 

This is the link to the Children’s Book Insider website. There is also a link on the sidebar of my blog…excellent resources!

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http://cbiclubhouse.com/clubhouse/nonmembers1/

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Hyperbole

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Hyperbole – is a figure of speech in which statements are exaggerated to create an impact and are not supposed to be interpreted literally. They are commonly used in prose as well as poetry. Hyperbole is an obvious and intentional exaggeration, an extravagant statement or figure of speech not intended to be taken literally. An overstatement.(write this down)

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Why use Hyperbole?

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There are about a gazillion reasons to use hyperbole, but I’m not going to exaggerate for comical, ironic or dramatic effect. I would jump off a cliff before I’d ever use hyperbole myself!

Did you grin?

Hyperbole is used to evoke a laugh…to bring humor to your writing!

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For example:
Christmas will never come.
Everyone knows that.
He is as big as an elephant!
He is as skinny as a toothpick.
He is older than the hills.
He is the fastest thing on two feet.
He was thirsty enough to drink a river dry.
He’s 900 years old.
He’s got a truckload of money.
He’s got tons of money.
Her smile was a mile wide.
I am so hungry I could eat a horse.
I am so tired I could sleep for a year.
I ate the whole cow.
I can smell pizza from a mile away.
I can’t do anything right.

http://www.hyperbolelist.com/

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A few more examples of hyperbole…
For example in a speech:John Kennedy on Thomas Jefferson
“I think this is the most extraordinary collection of human talent, of human knowledge, that has ever been gathered at the White House–with the possible exception of when Thomas Jefferson dined alone.”
(President John F. Kennedy at a White House dinner honoring 49 Nobel Prize winners, April 29, 1962)

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For example in literature: Paul Bunyan’s Winter
“Well now, one winter it was so cold that all the geese flew backward and all the fish moved south and even the snow turned blue. Late at night, it got so frigid that all spoken words froze solid afore they could be heard. People had to wait until sunup to find out what folks were talking about the night before.”
(opening of the American folktale [or "fakelore," as it's sometimes called] “Babe the Blue Ox”)

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For example in literature: From “The Adventures of Pinocchio” written by C. Colloid
“He cried all night, and dawn found him still there, though his tears had dried and only hard, dry sobs shook his wooden frame. But these were so loud that they could be heard by the faraway hills…”

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For example in poetry:Auden on Endless Love
I’ll love you, dear, I’ll love you
Till China and Africa meet,
And the river jumps over the mountain
And the salmon sing in the street,

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I’ll love you till the ocean
Is folded and hung up to dry
And the seven stars go squawking
Like geese about the sky.
(W.H. Auden, “As I Walked Out One Evening,” 1935)

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It is important not to confuse hyperbole with simile and metaphor. It does make a comparison but unlike simile and metaphor, hyperbole has a humorous effect created by an overstatement.(write this down)

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Writing Prompt: Make a list of all the hyperbole you use in your daily vocabulary and/or in your writing. Listen closely to your family and people around you to see if they use hyperbole in daily conversation.

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Okay, now do everything else on the pledge for today and don’t forget to comment on today’s blog post!

RhyPiBoMo Pledge

RhyPiBoMo PledgeRhyPiBoMo Pledge
Please comment ONLY ONE TIME below for a chance to win today’s prize!
Prizes will be drawn by Random.com next Sunday for the previous week.
To be eligible for a prize you must be a registered participant and
comment after each days lessons.

RhyPiBoMo dances a poetic jig across the month of April!

Aside

 Just a reminder, the deadline for submissions to

the Golden Quill Poetry Contest for RhyPiBoMo Registrants

ends one week from today, April 26th midnight, Central time.

You can find the details by clicking the tab above!

RhyPiBoMo Poetry Contest Scroll

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Back in November, when I was dreaming of my Golden wish-list of guest bloggers for RhyPiBoMo, I quickly added Lee Bennett Hopkins to my list. At the time, I contacted a few writer friends, asking them for suggestions of authors, agents, editors and really anyone who might be interested in talking about rhyming picture books and poetry.

Thrilled beyond belief, a friend,Ruth McNally Barshaw, agreed to guest blog as she had just submitted a rhyming manuscript to her agent, who, by the way…loved it! Ruth and Tara Lazar were so kind to refer rhyming friends to me and even to email them on my behalf. Thanks so much for your help ladies!

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I sent out lots of invitations to participate as a guest blogger but had few responses until…

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I decided go big or go home! I went straight to the top of my list and found Mr. Hopkins on Facebook. I messaged him my schpeel about the event. He messaged me right back. “Sure,” he said. “What do I need to do?”

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From that moment on, Mr. Hopkins, who asked me to call him “Lee”, was my hero! Once I had Lee, the yes’s flowed in like sweet, sweet honey.

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I’m sure most of my gracious bloggers are still asking, “Who is this Angie Karcher chick? Do you know her? No! Do you know her?” LOL

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It is because of Lee, that RhyPiBoMo found its wings! I’m not at all saying that my other bloggers wouldn’t have joined in. I think they certainly would have, but his name gave my event the credibility that it needed. So thank you Lee and thank you to all my wonderful bloggers who knew that if Mr. Hopkins was involved, it must be a good thing!

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In our last email, he wrote:
“My best-est. And thank you for all you are doing for the world of poetry. Looking forward to April to read your work. In addition, April l3th is my birthday!”

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Oh, melt my heart! How very kind of him to say, but I’m still on the

teeny-weeny, baby steps

and his gigantic, poetic shoes

have left deep, deep footprints in the world of poetry.

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So, without further ado, I’m honored to present today’s

Golden Quill Guest Blogger

Lee Bennett Hopkins!

                 Rhypibomo Guest Blogger Badge     Lee B Hopkins 1

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We decided to do a Question and Answer blog post as he is understandably blogged out!

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As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?

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“I wanted to be a teacher due to my being influenced by my 8th-grade teacher, Ethel Kite MacLaughlin — and I did.”

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Please share a little about your early journey…

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“I was born in Scranton, Pennsylvania, and lived with my mother and siblings in a Newark, New Jersey, after my parents divorced. I attended Newark State Teacher’s College (now Kean University) and earned an MS from Bank Street College of Education. My interest in poetry as an educational tool in the classroom led to my work as a classroom resource coordinator; I also worked as an editor at Scholastic before becoming a full-time writer and editor of anthologies.”
Mr. Hopkins has almost 200 published collections and is the compiler of over 100 Anthologies.

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What is your magic ingredient for a successful anthology?

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“Balance is important in an anthology. I want many voices within a book, so I rarely use more than one or two works by the same poet. I want my collections to read like a short story or novel—not a hodgepodge of works thrown together aimlessly.”

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Why did you decide to be a writer?

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“I truly never decided to be a writer. A writing bug stung, the wound never healed. And I never ever want it to.”

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How do you feel about rhyming books in today’s market?

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“When they are good they are very good, and when they are bad … !”

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Why do you enjoy writing poetry?

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“Writing and my being are intertwined. I feel good when I’m writing … having written.
I don’t know what else I would do if it weren’t for the mighty pen.
There isn’t a day that goes by that I’m not reading poetry or working on a poem of my own.”

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What should authors always do when writing rhyme and poetry?

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“Rhyme is by far the hardest thing to create. Both poetry and rhyme must tell truths.”

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What should authors never do when writing rhyme and poetry?

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“Never be careless. Don’t think the first or second or tenth draft is fine. Read your work over and over and over again.”

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Describe the joy you feel when you read brilliant poetry.

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“When I get goose bumps, sigh, or utter aloud “OOO-hhh” I know I have read a beautiful piece of work. Poets like Langston Hughes, Carl Sandburg and Walt Whitman unleash emotions I never would have thought about before.”

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Can you recommend any rhyme/poetry resources or courses that would be helpful?

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“One of the best rhyming dictionaries I couldn’t be without is THE SCHOLASTIC RHYMING DICTIONARY with over l5,000 words by Sue Young. I guard this volume.
I won’t even take it out of the house.
As for resources? Read past poet’s work. You might begin with the NCTE Poetry Award Winners – incredibly diverse voices who have given us the best of the best for decades.”

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What do you predict the future is for rhyme and poetry?

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“One cannot predict the future for anything in publishing these days. I believe if you feel your work is good keep sending it out. Sadly, poetry is still the step child of the language arts. Fewer anthologies are appearing; in 2013 there were only two. I hope this trend doesn’t continue. We need voices — old and new voices side-by-side. We must also promote poetry every chance we get.  We spend too much time teaching children to read and not enough time teaching them to love to read.”

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          Lee B Hopkins 5    Lee B Hopkins 3

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http://www.amazon.com/Lee-Bennett-Hopkins-Childrens-Stories/dp/0531123154

 

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Lee B Hopkins 4

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Please visit his gorgeous website to learn more!

http://www.leebennetthopkins.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=103&Itemid=53

Lee B Hopkins 2

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Bio:
Teacher, Writer, Public Speaker, Editor, Anthologist, Children’s Program Television Host, and Noted poet Lee Bennett Hopkins has edited or authored numerous books for children, including the I Can Read Books Hamsters, Shells, and Spelling Bees; A Pet for Me: Poems; and the ALA Notable Children’s Book Surprises. The recipient of a Christopher Award and the University of Southern Mississippi’s Medallion for “lasting contributions to children’s literature,” Mr. Hopkins lives in Florida.

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Thank you Lee Bennett Hopkins!

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RhyPiBoMo Daily Lesson: Saturday, April 19th
By Angie Karcher © 2014
Lesson 21

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I will start out today’s lesson with the definitions of the
20 Most Common Figures of Speech

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We have covered some of these but you may want to

become acquainted with the rest.

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Figures of speech – are literary devices that can be used in our writing to enhance the quality of written or oral language. Anyone can put words together to form a sentence but the expert writer knows how to use figures of speech to transform the story from good to great. We use these devices to spice up the words without having to say everything so literally. It gives the reader more interesting language and a visual to help them enjoy the language. (write this down) This list is here for you to refer to.

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Here is a wonderful list of the Figures of Speech for you to look over:

Richard Nordquist – http://grammar.about.com/od/rhetoricstyle/a/20figures.htm

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Here is another good resource on the figures of speech with examples:

http://www.buzzle.com/articles/figures-of-speech-examples.html

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Today we are going to look more into Simile and Metaphor…

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Simile – a comparison (usually introduced by like or as) between two things that are generally not alike. A good simile must exemplify and illustrate the subject. A simile is a direct comparison between two different things.(write this down)

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Writers use similes to explain things, to express emotion, and to make their writing more interesting, vivid and entertaining. Discovering fresh similes to use in your own writing also means discovering new ways to look at your subjects.

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A common mnemonic device for remembering a simile is that a simile is similar or alike.

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For Example:
Using Like…

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She is like a candy so sweet.
Her eyes twinkled like stars.
He fights like a lion.
He runs like a cheetah.
She is fragrant like a rose.

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Using As…

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She walks as gracefully as a cat.
He was as hungry as a lion.
He was as mean as a bull.
Cute as a kitten.
As busy as a bee.
As snug as a bug in a rug.
Function of Simile

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Using similes is appealing to reader’s senses, encouraging them to use their imagination to comprehend what is being communicated. In addition, it inspires life-like qualities in our characters. Simile allows a writer to share their personal experiences with his/her audience. Therefore, the use of similes makes it easier to understand the subject of a literary text, which may have been too difficult or demanding to be comprehended.

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Similes are often used in Songs:
For example

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Speak Now – Taylor Swift about a woman stopping a wedding in its tracks includes three similes:
And she is yelling at a bridesmaid
Somewhere back inside a room
Wearing a gown shaped like a pastry.

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And the organ starts to play
A song that sounds like a death march.

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She floats down the aisle
Like a pageant queen.

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Candle in the Wind – Elton John’s ode to Marilyn Monroe’s title
And it seems to me you lived your life
Like a candle in the wind
Never knowing who to cling to
When the rain set in

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Bridge Over Troubled Water – Simon and Garfunkel’s hit is not speaking about an actual bridge…
I’m on your side
When times get rough
And friends just can’t be found
Like a bridge over troubled water
I will lay me down

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Metaphor – is a figure of speech in which an implied comparison is made between two unlike things that actually have something important in common. Metaphors also offer figurative comparisons, but these are implied rather than introduced by like or as. In other words, we think metaphorically–whether we’re aware of it or not.(write this down)

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The word metaphor itself is a metaphor, coming from a Greek word meaning to “transfer” or “carry across.” Metaphors “carry” meaning from one word, image, or idea to another.

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A simile is an expressed analogy; a metaphor is an implied one.

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For Example:
Night owl
Early bird
Life is a journey
There are plenty of fish in the sea
Hold your horses
Break the ice
No pain, no gain
Step on it
You’re no spring chicken
Golden years
Over the hill

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Now let’s look at another type of poetic metaphor

Visual Metaphors

For example:  A Leaf Falls on Loneliness by e.e.Cummings

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l(a

le

 

af

 

fa

 

ll

 

s)

 

one

 

l

iness

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“Form is at the heart of this poem. If you read everything between the parenthesis, you read “a leaf falls.” The rest spells “oneliness.” If you add the beginning “l” to the “oneliness–that is, everything not in parenthesis–you get “loneliness.”

VERY COOL!

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http://livingpoetry.blogspot.com/2004/12/eecummings.html

 

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This is actually a double metaphor. He associates loneliness with the falling of a leaf, and also visualizes the experience by isolating letters as they fall down the page.

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I love this quote by Kenneth Burke!
“Metaphor is a device for seeing something in terms of something else. It brings out the thisness of a that, or the thatness of a this.”

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Modern advertising relies heavily on visual metaphors. For example, in an ad for the banking firm Morgan Stanley (circa 1995), a man is pictured bungee jumping off a cliff. Two words serve to explain this visual metaphor: a dotted line from the jumper’s head points to the word “You”; another line from the end of the bungee cord points to “Us.” The metaphorical message–of safety and security provided in times of risk–is conveyed through a single dramatic image.

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Creative Metaphors
“Creative metaphors contrast with conventional metaphors. These are metaphorical usages which are found again and again to refer to a particular thing. Cases in point are the metaphors of cells fighting off infection and of micro-organisms invading; and the metaphorical meaning of divorced to mean ‘completely separated’ and field to refer to a specialized subject or activity. These kinds of metaphors are institutionalized as part of the language. Most of the time we hardly notice them at all, and do not think of them as metaphorical when we use or encounter them.”
(M. Knowles and R. Moon, Introducing Metaphor. Routledge, 2006)

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Conventional Metaphors
“Conventional metaphors are embedded in our culture to the point that we literally interpret their meaning. The example, “time is money,” is a conventional metaphor that has become embedded in American culture. We understand ‘time’ in terms of money and conceptualize ‘time’ as being ‘spent,’ ‘saved,’ or ‘wasted.’ Such basic conventional metaphors help structure our everyday thinking. We interpret these metaphors literally as a conventional part of speech, and this common language further influences how we conceptualize and behave. For example, ‘argument is war’ formulates how we think about arguing. We ‘defend,’ ‘strategize,’ ‘attack,’ and ‘defeat’ arguments.”
(Donna Cox, “Metaphoric Mappings: The Art of Visualization.” Aesthetic Computing, ed. by Paul A. Fishwick. The MIT Press, 2006)

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Dead metaphor – A figure of speech that has lost its force and imaginative effectiveness through frequent use.
For example:
the arm of the chair
the legs of the table
the foot of the bed
the hands of the clock
the neck of the river
the eye of the needle
the shoulder of the road

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“The ‘dead metaphor’ account misses an important point: namely, that what is deeply entrenched, hardly noticed, and thus effortlessly used is most active in our thought. The metaphors . . . may be highly conventional and effortlessly used, but this does not mean that they have lost their vigor in thought and that they are dead. On the contrary, they are ‘alive’ in the most important sense–they govern our thought–they are ‘metaphors we live by.’”
(Zoltán Kövecses, Metaphor: A Practical Introduction. Oxford Univ. Press, 2002)

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13 Different Types of Metaphors

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1) Absolute Metaphor
A metaphor in which one of the terms (the tenor) can’t be readily distinguished from the other (the vehicle).

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2) Complex Metaphor
A metaphor in which the literal meaning is expressed through more than one figurative term (a combination of primary metaphors).

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3) Conceptual Metaphor
A metaphor in which one idea (or conceptual domain) is understood in terms of another.

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4) Conventional Metaphor
A familiar comparison that doesn’t call attention to itself as a figure of speech.

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5) Creative Metaphor
An original comparison that does call attention to itself as a figure of speech.

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6) Dead Metaphor
A figure of speech that has lost its force and imaginative effectiveness through frequent use.

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7) Extended Metaphor
A comparison between two unlike things that continues throughout a series of sentences in a paragraph or lines in a poem.

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8) Mixed Metaphor
A succession of incongruous or ludicrous comparisons.

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9) Primary Metaphor
A basic, intuitively understood metaphor–such as KNOWING IS SEEING or TIME IS MOTION–that may be combined with other primary metaphors to produce complex metaphors.

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10) Root Metaphor
An image, narrative, or fact that shapes an individual’s perception of the world and interpretation of reality.

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11) Submerged Metaphor
A type of metaphor in which one of the terms (either the vehicle or tenor) is implied rather than stated explicitly.

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12) Therapeutic Metaphor
A metaphor used by a therapist to assist a client in the process of personal transformation.

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13) Visual Metaphor
The representation of a person, place, thing, or idea by way of a visual image that suggests a particular association or point of similarity.

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“Regardless of the types of metaphors you favor, keep in mind Aristotle’s observation 2,500 years ago in Rhetoric: “Those words are most pleasant which give us new knowledge. Strange words have no meaning for us; common terms we know already. It is metaphor which gives us most of this pleasure.”

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Richard Nordquist – http://grammar.about.com/od/rhetoricstyle/a/13metaphors.htm

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Writing Prompt: Write a poem with simile and metaphor included.

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Okay, now do everything else on the pledge for today and don’t forget to comment on today’s blog post!

RhyPiBoMo Pledge

RhyPiBoMo PledgeRhyPiBoMo Pledge
Please comment ONLY ONE TIME below for a chance to win today’s prize!
Prizes will be drawn by Random.com next Sunday for the previous week.
To be eligible for a prize you must be a registered participant and
comment after each days lessons.

Metaphor and Simile Saturday

Aside

The Webinar is one week from today…Don’t miss it!

Interesting Image

 

Join us for our special “3 Things You Must Know About Writing Rhyming Kids’ Books” webinar, on Friday, April 25th, at 6:00 PM! Pacific Time

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Link for the live webinar

https://wj168.infusionsoft.com/app/page/free_poetry_webinar

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Reserve your spot today for this important event hosted by Sudipta Bardhan-Quallen and Dr. Mira Reisberg to learn about:

• The 3 critical things people who rhyme need to know

• How poetic techniques can improve your own writing whether you write in rhyme or not.

• Meet the amazing Sudipta Bardhan-Quallen, author of Chicks
Run Wild, Hampire and 34 other books.

• Hear from Dr. Mira Reisberg, Agent/Children’s Book Academy founder as she shares some of the pleasures of poetry.

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Mira and Sudipta have invited RhyPiBoMoers as their

special guests so reserve your spot now by clicking the link above!

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Today’s guest blogger is an amazing writer who has published over 34 books…that’s a lot of writing wisdom and talent, all wrapped up in one person! I am so pleased to have her here to share a bit of her writing knowledge with us!

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So, without further ado, I’m honored to present today’s

Golden Quill Guest Blogger

Sudipta Bardhan-Quallen!

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        Rhypibomo Guest Blogger Badge      Sudipta B Quallan 1

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Sing A Different Tune and Make Your Rhyme Sing

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I struggled with the title of this post. I wanted to create something catchy, something idiomatic, something that tied into the theme of my post, about songwriting vs. writing in rhyme and what one can teach us about the other. I’m not sure that really worked, but at least now you have an introduction to what I’ll be talking about.

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If you’re interested in writing picture books in rhyme, you’ve probably already heard someone tell you to make your rhyme sing!” That advice, though well-intended, often gets across the wrong point. People start to think that rhyming picture books should sound like songs. And why not? Song lyrics rhyme. They flow to the beat of the music. So if your picture book text sounds like song lyrics, you’re on the right track, no?

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The answer is NO.

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Songwriting is a beautiful art. But if you follow the same rules that song writers do, you won’t end up with a very good picture book – and not just because picture book writers use fewer repetitions of “baby,” “ooh,” and “tonight.” The thing is, picture book writers have to be much more strict about the rules of rhyme and meter – we don’t get away with the things that songwriters get away with.

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Here are some lyrics from Collide, written by Kevin Griffin and Howie Day (I like using this refrain as an example because it actually references when “the wrong words seem to rhyme”!):

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[The first refrain]
Even the best fall down sometimes
Even the wrong words seem to rhyme
Out of the doubt that fills my mind
I somehow find
You and I collide

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[the second refrain]
Even the best fall down sometimes
Even the stars refuse to shine
Out of the back you fall in time
I somehow find
You and I collide

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The rhyme scheme in the first iteration of the refrain is AABBC (I’m giving the songwriters a pass on the near rhyme of “sometimes” and “rhyme”), but then the second time around, it becomes ABACD. Very, very inconsistent (and, if I can say, lots of wrong words that only seem to rhyme!). Now, there is assonance in all these end words (sometimes/rhyme/mind/find/collide and sometimes/shine/time/find/collide), and in the context of the song, the assonance works. But assonance isn’t rhyme, and when you just try to read the lyrics, they don’t sound as good without the music.

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When you look at the meter, the songwriters become even more inconsistent. When the lyrics are sung, the stressed fall on the bolded syllables:

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Even the best fall down sometimes
Even the wrong words seem to rhyme
Out of the doubt that fills my mind
I somehow find
You and I collide

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The singer speeds though the extra syllables of “even the” and “out of the” and then uses a long pause and filler music to create an extra beat between the end of the 4th line and the beginning of the 5th.

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When we write a rhyming picture book, we don’t get to fill in gaps with extra music, or speed through extra syllables to make the rhythm consistent.

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When we write a rhyming picture book, we don’t get to use assonance or consonance in the place of true rhymes.

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If you want your rhyming picture book to sing, you have to avoid writing it like a song.

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After telling you everything about songwriting you shouldn’t repeat in your picture book, let me just tell you one thing that songwriters get really right: the refrain.

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Most songs are arranged roughly like this:

First verse
Refrain
Second verse
Refrain
Bridge
Refrain

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Structurally, the refrain helps to delineate different sections/verses of the song – it signals the listener that the previous verse has ended and he is about to hear a new verse. Sometimes the refrain is identical in every iteration. But more often, the refrain alters slightly every time we hear it – and the alteration supports the narrative of the song.

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Here’s the first refrain of Taylor Swift’s You Belong With Me:

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If you could see that I’m the one who understands you.
Been here all along. So, why can’t you see—
You belong with me, you belong with me?

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The last time, however, the refrain changes slightly:

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Can’t you see that I’m the one who understands you?
Been here all along. So, why can’t you see—
You belong with me?

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Even if you don’t know the song, you could probably tell that at the beginning, she is trying to convince him to see she’s the one for him – and by the end, she’s frustrated that he still doesn’t see it. Just the subtle change in the wording of the refrain really drives that home.

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If you’re looking for examples of the refrain done well in picture books, study Karma Wilson’s BEAR SNORES ON, Bill Martin, Jr’s CHICKA CHICKA BOOM BOOM, and maybe even my CHICKS RUN WILD.

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In Conclusion

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You’re getting lots of great tips this month on writing great rhyming picture books. It truly is an art form, and a distinct art form from anything else. If nothing else, I hope this post helps you see our art as being as unique as it truly is!

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PS
For a really interesting read, check out this article in Slate called What is the most common rhyme in the history of pop music? (by Ben Blatt).

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http://www.slate.com/articles/arts/culturebox/2014/02/justin_bieber_and_the_beatles_they_both_liked_to_rhyme_the_same_words.html

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Here are some of the rhyming pairs Mr Blatt references:
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Do/You
Be/Me
Me/See
True/You
Baby/Me
Go/Know
Through/You
Around/Down *
Night/Right
Mind/Time *
To/You
Mine/Time *
Day/Way
Free/Me
Away/Day
Say/Way
Away/Say
Too/You
Be/See
Gone/On
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Don’t tell Mr Blatt, but none of the pairs marked with an asterisk actually rhymes.

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Bio:
Sudipta Bardhan-Quallen is an award-winning children’s book author whose books include Duck Duck Moose, Orangutangled, Snoring Beauty, and Tyrannosaurus Wrecks. She visits schools around the country to talk about the craft of writing to children of all ages. “Every book is an autobiography” is a favorite saying of hers, and a big part of her message is that everyone, grownup or child, has a story that is interesting and compelling — if you can find the right words to tell it. Sudipta lives outside Philadelphia with her children and an imaginary pony named Penny. You can learn more about her and her books on her website http://www.sudipta.com or at her blog http://www.NerdyChicksRule.com.

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Here are just a few of Sudipta’s Books…

Sudipta B Quallan 2     Orangutangled

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Snoring Beauty           Tyrannosaurus

 

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Thank you Sudipta Bardhan-Quallen!

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RhyPiBoMo Daily Lesson: Friday, April 18th
By Angie Karcher © 2014
Lesson 20

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More Feet?

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Yes, 2 more…

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The reason that there are so many types of feet is that there is a need in poetry to express a variety of emotions and actions. These rhythms enable poets to examine rhythmic patterns and express these in commonly understood terms.

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Dacty – is a metrical foot consisting of one long and two short syllables or of one stressed and two unstressed syllables. Dactylic rhythm is the direct opposite of trochaic in that it has one hard beat followed by two soft beats as can be heard in the word HAP-pen-ing. The first syllable “hap” is hard and the last two, “pen” and “ing” are soft. (write this down)

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Pronunciation: Dak-tull
The stressed syllables are in all caps

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For example:
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s poem Evangeline, which is in dactylic hexameter:

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THIS is the / FOR-est prim- / E-val. The / MUR-mur-ing / PINES and the / HEM-locks/

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Dactyl/Dactyl/Dactyl/Dactyl/Dactyl/Trochee

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LONG-short-short/ LONG-short-short/ LONG-short-short/ LONG-short-short/LONG-

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short-short/LONG-short-short/

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DUM-da-da/DUM-da-da/DUM-da-da/DUM-da-da/DUM-da-da/DUM-da-da/

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For example:
Robert Browning’s The Lost Leader – 1st line

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JUST for a/HAND-ful of/SIL-ver he/left us

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*LONG-short-short/ LONG-short-short/ LONG-short-short/LONG-short/

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Dactyl/Dactyl/Dactyl/Trochee

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DUM-da-da/DUM-da-da/DUM-da-da/DUM-da

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Foot Type                      Style Stress pattern                                        Syllable Count

Dactyl/Dactylic          Stressed + Unstressed + Unstressed     Three

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Anapest – is a metrical foot composed of two unaccented syllables followed by one accented syllable or two short syllables followed by one long one, as in the word se-ven-TEEN.(write this down)

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Pronunciation: Ann-uh-pest
The stressed syllables are in all caps

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For example:
Clement Clarke Moore’s Twas the Night Before Christmas

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twas the NIGHT/ be-fore CHRIST/mas, when ALL/ through the HOUSE/
short-short-LONG/short-short-LONG/short-short-LONG/short-short-LONG
da-da-DUM/da-da-DUM/da-da-DUM/da-da-DUM/

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not a CREA/ture was Stir/ring not E/ven a MOUSE/
short-short-LONG/short-short-LONG/short-short-LONG/short-short-LONG
da-da-DUM/da-da-DUM/da-da-DUM/da-da-DUM/

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Foot Type                            Style Stress pattern                                             Syllable Count
Anapest/Anapestic      Unstressed + Unstressed + Stressed          Three

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Writing Prompt:If you want some real practice, divide this familiar poem into feet as above. This may be easier for you to hear the stressed and unstressed syllables as it is a familiar poem that is normally recited out loud.

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Twas the night before Christmas, when all thro’ the house,
Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse;
The stockings were hung by the chimney with care,
In hopes that St. Nicholas soon would be there;
The children were nestled all snug in their beds,
While visions of sugar plums danc’d in their heads,
And Mama in her ‘kerchief, and I in my cap,
Had just settled our brains for a long winter’s nap-
When out on the lawn there arose such a clatter,
I sprang from the bed to see what was the matter.
Away to the window I flew like a flash,
Tore open the shutters, and threw up the sash.
The moon on the breast of the new fallen snow,
Gave the lustre of mid-day to objects below;
When, what to my wondering eyes should appear,
But a minature sleigh, and eight tiny rein-deer,
With a little old driver, so lively and quick,
I knew in a moment it must be St. Nick.
More rapid than eagles his coursers they came,
And he whistled, and shouted, and call’d them by name:
“Now! Dasher, now! Dancer, now! Prancer, and Vixen,
“On! Comet, on! Cupid, on! Dunder and Blixem;
“To the top of the porch! to the top of the wall!
“Now dash away! dash away! dash away all!”
As dry leaves before the wild hurricane fly,
When they meet with an obstacle, mount to the sky;
So up to the house-top the coursers they flew,
With the sleigh full of Toys – and St. Nicholas too:
And then in a twinkling, I heard on the roof
The prancing and pawing of each little hoof.
As I drew in my head, and was turning around,
Down the chimney St. Nicholas came with a bound:
He was dress’d all in fur, from his head to his foot,
And his clothes were all tarnish’d with ashes and soot;
A bundle of toys was flung on his back,
And he look’d like a peddler just opening his pack:
His eyes – how they twinkled! his dimples how merry,
His cheeks were like roses, his nose like a cherry;
His droll little mouth was drawn up like a bow,
And the beard of his chin was as white as the snow;
The stump of a pipe he held tight in his teeth,
And the smoke it encircled his head like a wreath.
He had a broad face, and a little round belly
That shook when he laugh’d, like a bowl full of jelly:
He was chubby and plump, a right jolly old elf,
And I laugh’d when I saw him in spite of myself;
A wink of his eye and a twist of his head
Soon gave me to know I had nothing to dread.
He spoke not a word, but went straight to his work,
And fill’d all the stockings; then turn’d with a jerk,
And laying his finger aside of his nose
And giving a nod, up the chimney he rose.
He sprung to his sleigh, to his team gave a whistle,
And away they all flew, like the down of a thistle:
But I heard him exclaim, ere he drove out of sight-
Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good night.

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Okay, now do everything else on the pledge for today and don’t forget to comment on today’s blog post!

RhyPiBoMo Pledge

RhyPiBoMo PledgeRhyPiBoMo Pledge
Please comment ONLY ONE TIME below for a chance to win today’s prize!
Prizes will be drawn by Random.com next Sunday for the previous week.
To be eligible for a prize you must be a registered participant and
comment after each days lessons.

Anapests and Dactyls All Around! Friday

Aside

          Registration for RhyPiBoMo 2014 is Closed!

We have 204 participants registered

for this, our first year!

Woo Hoo!

More confetti throwing!

;;::‘””:“”:“;:’:;”::”;”‘:”””::”;;;;””:’;:

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This really is amazing to me that over 200 of you are coming here every day or as often as you can, to read and learn more about writing. I didn’t know if I’d have 4 people following my blog starting on March 3oth…Thank you from the bottom of my heart for trusting me to take us through this meandering journey through rhyme and poetry to get to our final destination of writing rhyming picture books.

Hugs and rhyme for everyone!

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Today’s guest blogger is a busy lady who has her toes dipped in lots of different writing rivers…Her latest endeavor  is a wonderful new poetry course called

The Lyrical Language Lab, Punching Up Prose with Poetry.

http://www.nowaterriver.com/the-lyrical-language-lab/

Check it out! It seems that April and May are already full but you should consider signing up for a summer class! Renee has generously donated a scholarship for this course as one of our Golden Quill Poetry Contest Prizes…Thanks Renee!

Renee la Tulippe 2

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So, without further ado, I’m honored to present today’s

Golden Quill Guest Blogger

Renee La Tulippe!

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    Rhypibomo Guest Blogger Badge     Renee LaTulippe

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FREE VERSE FOR RHYMERS: Lessons from the Other Side
by Renée M. LaTulippe

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We all know that writing – any kind of writing – must be tight and engaging. No extra words. No tangents. Every syllable must push push push that poem or story forward toward its inevitable end. And those syllables have to sing.

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A good way to become familiar with the economy and choice of words necessary for such writing is to read and write free verse. As rhymers, we can learn so much by stripping away our rhyme schemes and meter and letting our stories or poems stand there as naked as jaybirds. Without all the fancy plumes, do they still hold up?

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The three free verse poems below illustrate how much can be done with character development, rhythm, and story structure in just a few well-chosen words. Read them and try the quick exercises to see how you can apply the techniques to hone your rhyming poems and stories.

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Character Development

Sisters

Points to ponder:
• In two tercets and a total of twenty-five words, poet Janet Wong creates an entire relationship with an emotional backstory.

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• The poem feels both effortless and sincere because the poet has reproduced the natural rhythms of spoken language – something that is often lost in rhyming texts. There is nothing forced about the language.

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• Careful word choice supports the image of the narrator as a girl who is “soft” – just like all those F sounds in tofu, soft, falling, tough, full of fire.

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• Although this is free verse, the poet makes use of slant rhyme and other sound devices, as in tofu/soft/tough and ginger/her.

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• The first two lines and the use of tofu and soft at first give a sense that perhaps the narrator is merely plump, while the clever third line, easily falling apart, adds another meaning to the word soft, as in emotionally fragile (or at least more fragile than the tougher sister).

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• The second tercet succinctly reveals both the narrator’s desire and her view of her sister.

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Try it!
Write a short free verse poem that encapsulates your main character and includes clues to his/her personality, problem, emotional state, and/or relationship to another character. Then rewrite it as a rhyming stanza.

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Rhythm and Sound

Beavers

Points to ponder:
• Although it is free verse, Marilyn Singer’s poem contains rhyme, alliteration, assonance, consonance, onomatopoeia, and repetition.

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• Form and sound work really well together in This stick here / That stick there. The repeated stick is a short, staccato word that recalls the precision of a beaver’s work, while the space in the line forces the reader to pause and emphasizes the deliberate actions of the beaver in placing the sticks just so.

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• The same can be said for the repetition of mud, more mud, add mud, good mud, which creates a single-minded, assembly-line image of very focused beavers and mimics their staccato movements.

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• The heavy D, G, and short U sounds in that repeated line put us right in the mud with the beavers, while the alliterated M sound creates a subtle, monotonous hum that underscores the assembly line focus.

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• The lack of punctuation throughout further enhances the idea that these beavers don’t take a break and will continue working in their dam factory long after we’ve finished the poem.

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Try it!
Choose a short section of your manuscript or poem and rewrite it as a free verse poem that captures the desired rhythm of your story/character. Is it fast-paced and bouncy or slow and lyrical? Consider the properties of the sounds you choose.

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Story Structure

 Sign me up

Points to ponder:
• This poem by David L. Harrison is a succinct illustration of story structure and story elements. With sparse but evocative language, the poem:

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• establishes the main character and his emotional state (further helped by cowboy dialect)

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• introduces the problem (conflicted about signing up for the cattle drive)

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• illustrates reasons that gave rise to problem (those durn flies!)

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• ups the stakes (busted leg, stampedes, etc.)

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• includes falling action moving toward resolution (don’t know what else I’d do)

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• shows transformation of character’s emotional state (lookin’ at stars ain’t so bad)

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• resolution (sign me up)

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Try it!
Write your whole rhyming story or poem in free verse. What did you leave out that was in the rhyming version? Do you really need it?

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Remember that when trying these exercises, the idea is not to merely write your whole rhyming story or poem down the page instead of across it – that’s not what free verse is. Rather, the idea is to distill your work into one or a series of short free verse poems with the goal of seeing
• where you can tighten your writing
• how you can use sound, rhythm, and word choice to enhance your story
• how you can bring more of the natural rhythms of spoken language into your verse
• how your structure holds up without all the bells and whistles of rhyme

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Getting to the essence of your story through free verse can help you approach your work with a more critical eye and refine it into a tight, engaging, and musical piece of writing.

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© 2014 Renée M. LaTulippe. This article is partially excerpted from a lesson in the online course The Lyrical Language Lab: Punching Up Prose with Poetry. All rights reserved.

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Bio
Renée M. LaTulippe has co-authored nine early readers and a collection of poetry titled Lizard Lou: a collection of rhymes old and new for All About Learning Press, where she is also the editor, and has poems in The Poetry Friday Anthology for Middle School and The PFA for Science. She developed and teaches the online course The Lyrical Language Lab: Punching Up Prose with Poetry and blogs on children’s poetry at NoWaterRiver.com. Renée earned her BFA in acting/directing from Marymount Manhattan College and her MA in English Education from NYU, and taught English, theater, and public speaking in NYC. She lives in Italy with her husband and twin boys.
http://www.NoWaterRiver.com
Twitter: @ReneeMLaTulippe

No water river

http://www.nowaterriver.com/

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- Renée’s book of poetry: Lizard Lou: a collection of poems old and new
- See my poems in The Poetry Friday Anthology for Middle School (ed. Sylvia Vardell and Janet Wong)
- How to use NWR in the classroom

Here are a few of Renee’s books:

Renee La Tulippe 1

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       Renee La Tulippe 3

Thank you Renee La Tulippe!

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RhyPiBoMo Daily Lesson: Thursday, April 17th
By Angie Karcher © 2014
Lesson 19

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Today’s lessons will be more review of Iamb, Trochee and Spondee. This will give you time to catch up with other lessons as well.

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Talk about Breaking it down…
One LAST time!

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You should be feeling pretty comfortable with Iamb by now!

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Iamb – is a metrical foot consisting of two syllables, a short one followed by a long one
Pronunciation: EYE-am

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The stressed syllables are in all caps

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For example:
Come LIVE / with ME / and BE / my LOVE.
Short LONG/ short LONG/ short LONG/ short LONG
Da-DUM/Da-DUM/ Da-DUM/Da-DUM

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Another example:
from Shakespeare’s Sonnet 18:

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So LONG / as MEN / can BREATHE / or EYES / can SEE,
Short LONG/ short LONG/ short LONG/ short LONG/short LONG
Da-DUM/Da-DUM/ Da-DUM/Da-DUM/Da-DUM

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So LONG / lives THIS / and THIS / gives LIFE / to THEE.
Short LONG/ short LONG/ short LONG/ short LONG/short LONG
Da-DUM/Da-DUM/ Da-DUM/Da-DUM/Da-DUM

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Foot Type                  Style Stress pattern                       Syllable Count
Iamb/Iambic          Unstressed + Stressed                   Two

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Trochee – a metrical foot consisting of one long syllable followed by one short syllable or of one stressed syllable followed by one unstressed syllable (as in apple)
Pronunciation: TROH-kee

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Trochaic is the direct opposite of iambic in that its two feet are hard and soft.
The stressed syllables are in all caps

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For example:

TI-ger/TI-ger/BURN-ing/BRIGHT
LONG short/LONG short/LONG short/LONG
DUM-da/DUM-da/DUM-da/DUM

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IN the/FOR-est/OF the/NIGHT
LONG short/LONG short/LONG short/LONG
DUM-da/DUM-da/DUM-da/DUM

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Foot Type                            Style Stress pattern                        Syllable Count
Trochee/Trochaic          Stressed + Unstressed                  Two

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Spondee – is a metrical foot consisting of two long or stressed syllables as in the word “heartache.” Spondee is a relatively rare meter that slows down the tempo of a line when it is used. It is unusual to find whole poems written in spondee, but it is usually combined with other metrical feet for effect.
Pronunciation:SPON-dee

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The stressed syllables are in all caps

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For example:
Longfellow’s classic, ‘On the Shores of Hiawatha.’
This poem is rare because every line has three feet of spondee and one of trochee. This poem is about Native Americans, and we can almost hear a drum beat because of the use of spondee.

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BY THE/SHORE OF / GIT-CHE/GUM-ee.
LONG LONG/LONG LONG/LONG LONG/ short
DUM DUM/DUM DUM/DUM DUM/ da

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BY THE/ SHIN-ING/ BIG SEA /WAT-er
LONG LONG/LONG LONG/LONG LONG/ short
DUM DUM/DUM DUM/DUM DUM/ da

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AT THE/ DOOR-WAY/OF HIS/WIG-wam,
LONG LONG/LONG LONG/LONG LONG/ short
DUM DUM/DUM DUM/DUM DUM/ da

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IN THE /PLEA-SANT/SUM-MER/MORN-ing,
LONG LONG/LONG LONG/LONG LONG/ short
DUM DUM/DUM DUM/DUM DUM/ da

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Writing Prompt: Finish finding the Spondee in the rest of this poem. Separate by writing the stressed syllables in all caps and divide the feet with a slash mark, as above.

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HI-A/WA-THA/STOOD AND/WAIT-ed.

All the air was full of freshness,

All the earth was bright and joyous,

And before him, through the sunshine,

Westward toward the neighboring forest

Passed in golden swarms the Ahmo

Passed the bees, the honey-makers,

Burning, singing in the sunshine.’

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Foot Type                             Style Stress pattern                    Syllable Count
Spondee/Spondaic        Stressed + Stressed                     Two

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The exact opposite of Spondee is Pyrrhic. Pyrrhic has 2 unstressed syllables. See if you can find some poems with Pyrrhic feet.

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Okay, now do everything else on the pledge for today and don’t forget to comment on today’s blog post!

RhyPiBoMo Pledge

RhyPiBoMo PledgeRhyPiBoMo Pledge
Please comment ONLY ONE TIME below for a chance to win today’s prize!
Prizes will be drawn by Random.com next Sunday for the previous week.
To be eligible for a prize you must be a registered participant and
comment after each days lessons.

Break-it-down Dancing with Poetic Feet Thursday

Aside

Today is day 18 of RhyPiBoMo!

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We are midway between learning how to apply poetic devices to our picture book writing and how to write a rhyming picture book. There is one more week of poetry info and then we delve into picture book writing the last week and a half.

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I thank you all for hanging in here with me! It has been quite a journey so far but hang on…there is plenty more to learn!

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Today’s guest blogger has quite a repertoire of distinguished credits to go with her name…not to mention the twelve books she has written! She was honored with the E.B. White Read Aloud Award for A VISITOR FOR BEAR. I think I would just die and go to picture book heaven if I won that award! I can’t think of a better honor to bestow a picture book author than to honor the lyrical, flowing language that makes that particular book a joy to read aloud…that my friends, is what we should all aspire to write! Needless to say, I am thrilled to have her here!

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So, without further ado, I’m honored to present today’s

Golden Quill Guest Blogger

Bonny Becker!

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      Rhypibomo Guest Blogger Badge     Bonny Becker 1

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Tell It Slant

“Tell all the Truth but tell it slant–
Success in Circuit lies
Too bright for our infirm Delight
The Truth’s superb surprise

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As Lightning to the Children eased
With explanation kind
The Truth must dazzle gradually
Or every man be blind–”

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Emily Dickinson

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Our first experience with rhyme was probably with nursery rhymes—simple perfect word matches—cat and hat, hog and jog, Horner and corner. But you can work with rhyme in subtler ways. One of my favorite approaches is to “tell it slant,” as Emily Dickinson was so fond of doing.

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Slant rhymes, also called near rhymes are rhymes created using words with similar but not identical sounds. Words like ground/down, play/stayed and even more tenuous matches like Dickinson’s delight/surprise and eased/gradually. In some near rhymes the vowels are similar; in some the consonants match.

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Why do I like to tell it slant? I love it for its rhythmic surprises. It can help you break away from the singsong, drumbeat that’s easy to fall into with perfect rhyme. But best of all, from a writer’s standpoint, it makes this whole business of writing in rhyme easier.

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It’s hard to tell a nuanced story in perfect rhyme—with near rhyme your word choices open up dramatically. It makes it a bit easier to do as Dickinson advices—to tell the truth but tell it slant. It can “ease” the telling–and the receiving—both literally and figuratively.

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Like Dickinson, I like to mix both near and perfect rhyme. Here are the first few stanzas of my very first book, “The Quiet Way Home.”

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“Let’s go the quiet way home.
Not by the dog who growls at the gate
But the way where the kittens play

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Hush. Can you hear it.

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Skittle. Skattle. Bat and claw
Kitten paw.

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Let’s go the quiet way home
Not by the lawn and the roar as John mows
But the way where Mr. Kay’s garden grows

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Hush. Can you hear it?

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Chip, chop, dig-a-row.
Garden hoe.

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There are a couple bits of advice embedded in these lines. For one thing, if you’re going to use slant rhyme establish early that this is what you’re going to do. With my first stanza, I’ve signaled immediately that I’m not going with perfect rhyme (gate/play). But as you can see from my second verse, I am promising a similar rhythm and pattern to each stanza. And perfect rhyme at times (mows/grows).

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Notice also that I use internal rhyme—that is rhyme within the line itself not just at the end, such as “growls” and “gate,” “roar” and “mows,” “way” and “Kay.” Internal rhyme like that is often slant rhyme and poets use it all the time.
(By the way “hush” is a magic word. I’ve never had a class– from kindergarteners to 6th graders–not hush at that moment and listen. I suspect it’s half the magic of “Good Night Moon.”)

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Also, with the important moment—when I identify the object making the noise—I consistently use perfect rhyme (claw/paw, row/hoe). It creates a punchy contrast to the near rhyme. Just as Dickinson uses her one moment of perfect rhyme, kind/blind, to such powerful effect in her poem.

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One challenge of slant rhyme is it can get away from you. You don’t have the control of perfect rhythm and rhyme. In my book, “Just a Minute” I go so slant at times that I think I come perilously close to going completely off the track.
It’s a tall tale about a boy whose minute of waiting for his mother gradually seems to balloon into eternity.

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Here’s how it starts:

“Now, don’t you move,”
said Johnny MacGuffin’s mother.
“Stay right here while I shop.
Auntie Mabel will watch.
I’ll be just a minute.”

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And she sailed away,
Past the purses and plates,
Up the up escalator
In Bindle’s Department Store.
“But you’ll take forever!” Johnny cried.
“When you get back I’ll be fossilized!”
But it was too late.
He was stuck in the basement of Bindle’s again.

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While Johnny’s mom is away he imagines that Christmas comes and goes, a year passes, then more. He grows up and grows old and Bindle’s crumbles to dust. Finally:
The sun shifted its course
And the seas rose and fell
And rose again…

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…[then] the tides came in
and the sun burned to a cinder of vermilion…

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All this by the time his mother returns. But this rather careening path of rhythm and rhyme works for a tall tale of time spinning out of control.

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Slant rhyme isn’t “cheating” and it can be a powerful tool for you for telling stories in rhyme. But when to use it depends, as it always does, on what’s right for your story. Don’t use it just to be lazy.

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As in the Dickinson poem, with or without perfect rhyme, your goal as an author is to “tell all the truth.” To tell a story as honestly as you can. One that is honest about its message and honest about its techniques, and sometimes the perfect choice will be to “tell it slant.”

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Bio:
Bonny Becker is author of the best-selling Mouse and Bear books, including A Visitor for Bear, New York Times bestseller, winner of the E.B. White Read Aloud Award and Amazon’s Picture Book of the Year. Her latest in the series is A Library Book for Bear coming in September 2014. Her middle-grade novel, The Magical Ms. Plum won the 2010 Washington State Children’s Book Award. In all, she’s published 12 books for children. She is also an instructor for the Northwest Institute of Literary Arts, an accredited program for a Masters of Fine Arts in Writing.

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bonnybecker.com

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bjb@site7000.com

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Bonny Becker 2

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Bonny Becker 3

Thank you Bonny Becker!

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RhyPiBoMo Daily Lesson: Wednesday, April 16th
By Angie Karcher © 2014
Lesson 18

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Metrical Feet…Don’t Trip!

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feet

Okay…so what the H-E Double Hockey Stick are we talking about all this meter, foot, feet nonsense for again anyway? Haven’t we talked about this already? Right?

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Fair questions!

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This is all review.

Now that more of this poetry stuff is making sense, I hope that you can take it a step at a time and grasp the understanding of it all. You should feel more confident with the language so the concepts should be easier to grasp.

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Here’s the deal…
We should have a basic understanding of this meter stuff but honestly, we don’t have to remember everything. You should know enough that you could carry on a conversation with someone who asks you, the writer, “So, what is meter anyway?”
Now that you have all these resources at your fingertips, you can refer back to anything that you are foggy about.

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What we are really studying is called Prosody!

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Prosody – is the study of meters and forms of versification. (write this down)
Prosody includes not only poetic meter but also the rhythmic aspects of prose.

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I don’t plan on ever walking around telling anyone what type of feet my picture book has and you shouldn’t either. I think that’s where we’ve gotten some flack from some who say that rhyming picture book writers aren’t poets and that we don’t need to know this stuff. I firmly disagree. We must understand enough about poetry to write it purposefully in our work. We must be able to edit and revise it when an editor says to “fix the meter in the third stanza.” I want to be able to have that conversation and be respected as a professional…and then actually know how to do it!

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That is why we are studying poetry.

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Meter – is what brings the poem to life and is the internal beat or rhythm with which it is read. Meter in poetry is a rhythm of accented and unaccented syllables arranged into feet. The meter of a verse can be described as a sequence of feet. (write this down)

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Should you know what a poetic foot is?

Yes.

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Feet – a specific sequence of syllable types – such as relatively unstressed/stressed or long/short sounds. (write this down)

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Poetry is meant to be recited! That’s why we talk so much about the rhythm of the poem because it should sound like music with words when being said out loud.

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The number of beats per line of spoken poetry determines the name of the rhythm.
Here is a little chart you can print and leave close to your desk for quick reference.

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Feet Chart

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These are the different types of feet:

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Foot Type                          Style Stress pattern                 Syllable Count

Iamb/Iambic                                             Unstressed + Stressed                                                         Two
Trochee/Trochaic                                   Stressed + Unstressed                                                         Two
Spondee/Spondaic                                  Stressed + Stressed                                                               Two
Anapest/Anapestic                                Unstressed + Unstressed + Stressed                            Three
Dactyl/Dactylic                                       Stressed + Unstressed + Unstressed                             Three
Amphibrach/Amphibrachic            Unstressed + Stressed + Unstressed                             Three
Pyrrhic/Pyrrhic                                      Unstressed + Unstressed                                                    Two

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For example:
Suppose a line contains ten syllables (set length) in which the first syllable is unstressed, the second is stressed, the third is unstressed, the fourth is stressed, and so on until the line reaches the tenth syllable. The line would look like the following one

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The opening line of Shakespeare’s Sonnet 18 contains a pattern of unstressed and stressed syllables.

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/Shall I /com PARE/ thee TO/ a SUM/mers DAY/
1                   2                      3               4              5                        = 5 feet

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Each pair of unstressed and stressed syllables makes up a unit called a foot. This line contains five feet in all.

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A foot containing an unstressed syllable followed by a stressed syllable (as above) is called an iamb. Because there are five feet in the line, all iambic, the meter of the line is iambic pentameter. The prefix pent in pentameter means five
Thus, poetry lines with five feet are in pentameter. Iambic Pentameter

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So, that’s it for today as we will break down the foot types even further tomorrow and Friday. Let this digest…read it over a few times, look at this example below that I found and then read this all again.

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Another Good Link:
This goes into much more detail than I have but it is explained very well.

http://www.winthrop.edu/uploadedFiles/cas/english/SnappyScansion.pdf

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A few good poetry resource books…

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The Ode less Traveled

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Rhyme’s Reason

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I don’t have these books but I keep seeing them recommended as poetry resources!

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Writing Prompt: Write a poem in Iambic Pentameter

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Okay, now do everything else on the pledge for today and don’t forget to comment on today’s blog post!

RhyPiBoMo Pledge

RhyPiBoMo PledgeRhyPiBoMo Pledge
Please comment ONLY ONE TIME below for a chance to win today’s prize!
Prizes will be drawn by Random.com next Sunday for the previous week.
To be eligible for a prize you must be a registered participant and
comment after each days lessons.

Don’t Trip on Your Metrical Feet! Wednesday

Aside

Look at all the amazing guest bloggers

still to come this month!

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RhyPiBoMo Calendar updated

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Tomorrow, April 16th, at Midnight, Central Time

is the last day to register for RhyPiBoMo!

If you are not registered…go to the registration tab above and

join the official group now!

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RhyPiBoMo Poetry Contest Scroll

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Someone contacted me yesterday with a great question concerning the Golden Quill Poetry Contest. The question was, “Will I be posting the 3 winning poems here on my blog?” The answer, YES! So…if you have a poem that you want to submit but are considering submitting it to an editor, you may choose to send me a different poem. An editor might not look at your poem as favorably if he/she knows that your poem has already been seen by the public. Please consider this when submitting a poem for any contest!

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I was fortunate enough to not only meet today’s guest blogger at a SCBWI conference, but had her critique a manuscript for me. She liked it! I say that proudly, because if you’ve had many paid critiques done before, it can be very tough!  She is such a talented author and her books are full of lyrical, lovely language! I was very proud to contact her for this event and even more thrilled when she accepted the invitation to be a guest blogger!

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So, without further ado, I’m honored to present today’s

Golden Quill Guest Blogger

Rhonda Gowler Greene!

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       Rhypibomo Guest Blogger Badge    Rhonda G Green 1

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Over the years, I’ve critiqued many rhyming picture book manuscripts for unpublished writers. The main problem I see? Too many beats in a line. Rhymed stories should be pleasing to the ear, but inconsistency of the rhythm in lines is jarring. This, along with forced rhymes (2nd most common problem I see), is why many editors won’t consider rhyming manuscripts anymore. After wading through so many poorly written rhyming manuscripts, they’ve finally said, “Enough.”

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…2 lines from my NO PIRATES ALLOWED! SAID LIBRARY LOU (stressed beats in caps)…

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MAYbe, just MAYbe, the CODE be in RHYME.

He LOVED Mother GOOSE. Dr. SEUSS—how subLIME!
(btw, this is anapest meter- 2 unstressed beats, 1 stressed)

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Example of too many beats—

He LOVED Mother GOOSE books. Dr. SEUSS books—how subLIME!

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Adding “books” makes the reader have to rush to get all the words in. There are too many unstressed beats. Lines in rhyming picture books should “ssssing,” not make a reader stumble or have to rush.

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Even though some editors refuse to look at rhyme, rhyming picture book manuscripts still sell to editors who are willing to look for well-written gems. How can you develop an ear for hearing “off” meter, recognize weak rhymes, and turn your story into a “gem”?

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I’m a HUGE believer that in order to write rhyme well, you need to study the best rhyming picture books. My house is FULL of them (also of children’s poetry books). Read them like a writer. Pick apart, and think on, the texts. If it helps, count stressed and unstressed beats in lines. Study— Bats at the Beach, The Gingerbread Man Loose in the School, Tadpole Rex, Mrs. Biddlebox, Goodnight Goodnight Construction Site, Cowpoke Clyde and Dirty Dawg to name a few.
I read read read rhyming picture books because that’s a genre I want to excel in. I analyze them, type out the texts, compare my writing to what’s in them. I think—Would I have used that particular rhyme or written a certain line in that same amazing way? I read my writing out loud. I have someone else read it aloud to me. Sometimes I spend weeks on one phrase! Or word! Writing in rhyme, to me, is like putting a very difficult puzzle together. Two tools I couldn’t live without— 1) my rhyming dictionary 2) my big, fat The Synonym Finder.

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I actually think it’s as important to spend time studying successful books as it is to write. If you do your “homework” and learn from the best, you’ll actually save time since instead of churning out limp lines day after day, you’ll begin to be your own critic—which brings your writing to the next level! You’ll recognize weak lines and rhymes. You’ll come up with original word choices. It doesn’t mean you won’t have to revise, but you’ll be better at it.

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When I’m writing in rhyme, I don’t really think—“iambic,” “anapest,” “trochee,” “dactyl.” I just kind of “hear” the beat. Knowing about these meters, though, is helpful. To learn about them, read chapter 13 (Rhyme Time) of Ann Whitford Paul’s Writing Picture Books (a great resource!).

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I’m honored to be a guest blogger among so many distinguished rhymers! Besides the works of the 35 guest authors here on RhyPiBoMo, I recommend books by— Linda Ashman, Karen Beaumont, Sandra Boynton, Julia Donaldson, Douglas Florian, Mary Ann Hoberman, Verla Kay, J. Patrick Lewis, Alice Schertle, Judy Sierra, and Chris Van Dusen.
What are editors looking for? A clever story idea. Fresh writing. Often, humor. Tight writing. And, too, that gem—a perfectly rhymed picture book manuscript. Maybe it’s yours!
Happy Reading! Happy Rhyming! And—Good Luck!!

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Bio:

Rhonda Gowler Greene is the author of over twenty rhyming picture books (with four forthcoming). Her books have received honors such as School Library Journal Best Book, American Booksellers “Pick of the List,” Children’s Book Council Showcase Book, Bank Street College Best Book, IRA Children’s Choice Book, Sydney Taylor Notable Book, Junior Library Guild selection, Michigan Reads One State One Children’s Book Award, and starred reviews.
A former elementary school teacher, Rhonda earned her B.A. in Elementary and Special Education and her Master’s in Educational Media. She minored in music/piano in college. Rhonda lives with her husband, Gary, in West Bloomfield, Michigan. They have four grown children. Visit her on the web at

http://www.rhondagowlergreene.com.

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Here are a few of Rhonda’s Books…

 

 Rhonda G Green 2

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Rhonda G Green 3          Rhonda G Green 4

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Rhonda G Green 5                  Rhonda G Green 6

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Rhonda G Green 7                Rhonda G Green 8

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Thank you Rhonda Gowler Greene!

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RhyPiBoMo Daily Lesson: Tuesday, April 15th
By Angie Karcher © 2014
Lesson 17

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Do you have an ear for poetry?

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The way we assist young children to develop an ear for poetry is the same way you, as a writer can develop your poetic ear. Yes, we will start with nursery rhymes!

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Nursery Rhymes

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Nursery rhymes are essential because they help develop an ear for the sounds and syllables in words. Both rhythm and rhyme also aid with this learning process.

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Listen to these Nursery Rhymes over and over until you can recite them by memory.

http://www.mothergooseclub.com/

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Here are a few more activities to develop your poetic ear:

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Word Families

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Create word families.
In a notebook, start a list of basic one syllable words and list as many words in that word family as you can think of. Then, when your list is complete, look in a rhyming dictionary and add to your list. You will be amazed at how you begin to listen more closely to word patterns and analyze their patterns of sound.

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For example:
List of Word Families
-ab words (Cab, Dab, Fab, etc.)
-ad words (Bad, Dad, Fad, etc.)
-at words (Cat, Hat, Pat, etc)
-an
-ap
-all
-ash
-en
-et
-ed
-in
-it
-ip
-ill
-op
-ot
-og
-ug
-ut
-up
-ub

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This will give you a great beginning at listening to basic sounds of words that rhyme. Read these aloud. Have someone else read them aloud to you. If you are really challenged in this area, continue to create more lists with different beginning and ending sounds.

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Fill in the Blank

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Have someone else read children’s poems aloud and leave off the final rhyming word. I know this sounds very basic but it will help if this is an area you need help with. Remember, we are talking about creating perfect rhyme.

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Fill in the blank:
Little Boy Blue

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Little Boy Blue,
Come blow your horn,
The sheep’s in the meadow,
The cow’s in the ____;
Where is that boy
Who looks after the sheep?
Under the haystack
Fast ______.
Will you wake him?
Oh no, not I,
For if I do
He will surely ___.

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Swap Poem

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Write a swap poem. You write one line of a poem, and someone else writes the next line, matching the rhythm, and rhyming the last word. (Hint: Use words that are easy to rhyme!)

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I hope the rain will go away.

And stay away so I can play.

The sun must come and save the day.

“I want to go outside,” I say!

This was actually harder than it sounds!

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Resource from:
Nursery Rhymes: Not Just for Babies! By: Reading Rockets

http://www.readingrockets.org/article/14017

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Listen and Recite Poetry Out Loud
Very simply…Listening to poetry and rhyming songs is the best way to improve your ear for poetry!

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I am in no way suggesting that you should BUY any of these resources…I just list the Amazon link so you can see what it looks like and read more information. I’m sure most, if not all of them can be found at the library.

Here are a few suggested titles:

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Wee Sing Nursery Rhymes cds

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Dr. Seuss’s Beginning Book Set – (Cat in the Hat, One Fish Two Fish, Green Eggs and Ham, Hop on Pop, Fox in Socks)

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Poetry for Young People: Robert Frost

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Resources from: Phonics’ Failures and Fun with Phonology

http://www.gate.net/~labooks/phonemes-pre-reading-books.html

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A Child’s Introduction to Poetry: Listen While You Learn About the Magic Words That Have Moved Mountains, Won Battles, and Made Us Laugh and Cry
(CDs Included)

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Sound and Sense

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Resource from:The Pioneer Woman Blog

http://thepioneerwoman.com/homeschooling/2013/02/community-question-looking-for-poetry-curriculum/

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Poetry Out Loud Website

http://www.poetryoutloud.org/poems-and-performance/listen-to-poetry

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After the Introduction, you will see The Power of Poetry (2:28) By Dana Gioia
Click and listen to his reasons why poetry is important!
I found his detailed reasons very interesting!

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4 Reasons why poetry is one of the most practical and important things to learn.

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1)Poetry is a powerful way of mastering language.
2)Poetry is a way of training and developing our emotional intelligence.
3)Poetry helps us realize that language is holistic.
4)Poetry helps to enlarge our humanity and to give us the power to express it!

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There are also lots of wonderful poems offered and read aloud by various authors and poets. Enjoy!

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More poems read “Aloud” from Kristine O’Connell George’s website

http://www.kristinegeorge.com/poetry_aloud.html

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Classic Poetry Aloud, a podcast series for some of the greatest poetry in English.

http://classicpoetryaloud.wordpress.com/

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This certainly isn’t rocket science but by practicing over and over, you will improve and develop your poetic ear. It basically comes down to taking the time to recite out loud and listen to lots and lots of poetry…pretty simple.

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The Listening Challenge: Listen to a few of the poems from the resources above.

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Okay, now do everything else on the pledge for today and don’t forget to comment on today’s blog post!

RhyPiBoMo Pledge

RhyPiBoMo PledgeRhyPiBoMo Pledge
Please comment ONLY ONE TIME below for a chance to win today’s prize!
Prizes will be drawn by Random.com next Sunday for the previous week.
To be eligible for a prize you must be a registered participant and
comment after each days lessons.

Can You Hear It? Tuesday

Aside

Can you believe that Wednesday is the halfway point?

Where did those 2 weeks go?

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Remember…

This Wednesday, April 16th, is the last day to register for RhyPiBoMo!

Don’t forget… if you have been following along and reading the blogs, this will make you eligible to win a daily prize donated by one of our guest bloggers. Comment each day you participate and your name will go into the drawing.

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I should also mention that you need to clear your schedule on

Friday, April 25th at 6:00 pm PST

for

Mira Reisberg and Sudipta Bardhan-Quallan’s live Webinar

3 Things You Must Know About Writing Rhyming Kids’ Books!

You won’t want to miss this!

And they have a marvelous Poetry class coming up too! How do I know it’s marvelous? Because I’ve taken Mira’s Courses before…enough said! This dynamic duo will knock our rhyming socks off!

http://www.childrensbookacademy.com/

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Poetry course

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I’ve known today’s guest blogger for many years. We probably met at the very first writing conference I ever attended, back in 2002. She was a Regional Adviser for Indiana SCBWI, before moving to Missouri, where she continues do school visits and author events. I was proud to ask my friend to join this group of wonderful bloggers as she definitely deserves to be included!

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So, without further ado, I’m honored to present today’s

Golden Quill Guest Blogger

Peggy Archer!

     Rhypibomo Guest Blogger Badge   Peggy Archer

Are You Naturally Musical?

I love music. Which is not to say that I’m ‘naturally’ musical. My husband and I line dance. He’s a much better dancer than I am. But if you can count to 4, you can line dance. Listening to the music helps, because you can ‘feel’ the rhythm.

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As with dancing, I’m sometimes challenged when it comes to rhythm in a poem. Like counting the steps in a line dance, I count syllables. I look at where the stress falls in the lines. But sometimes this backfires. It becomes too structured. It takes the music out of the poem.

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Try clapping to the ‘music’ of your poem. Let’s try it with ‘Old MacDonald Had a Farm.’

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Old MacDonald had a farm

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E-i-e-i-o!

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And on his farm he had a cow… Uh oh! There’s an extra syllable at the beginning of this line!

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But like in music, sometimes you can slip in an extra syllable, sort of like a musical grace note.

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I think songs must be difficult to write. But because you hear it performed, everyone ‘gets’ the rhythm just the way the writer meant it! Not so with a poem. Because a poem is left to the voice of the reader.

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So how do you know if your reader will ‘get’ the rhythm that you intend? Read your poem out loud. Listen to how it sounds. Do you trip up on any of the words?

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You’ve read your poem out loud, and it sounds great! But will another person read your poem the same way?

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Say the word “seal.” Do you say it with one or two syllables?
How about ‘shuffling’ or ‘twinkling.’ Do you pronounce them with two syllables or three?
Do you say address or address?

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One way to see if your rhythm works for the reader is to ask someone else to read your poem out loud. Do they put the stress in the same places that you do? Do they trip up anywhere? If you need to, you could try rearranging the words, adding or deleting syllables, or using a different word altogether to make it flow.

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To create ‘music’ in your poetry, listen to the ‘sound’ of your words.

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Do you want your poem to have a soft or sentimental quality? Use more of the ‘soft’ letters of the alphabet.

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Over my arm
She softly flows—
cinnamon coat
And whiskery nose… (from “Hampster Hide-and-Seek” by Avis Harley)

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Or do you want something more concrete? Use more of the ‘hard’ letters in your words.
Down in the dungeon,
dark and deep… (from “Down in the Dungeon” by Rebecca Kai Dotlich)

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Can you hear the difference? Soft sounding consonants are: R, J, M, N, S, V, W. Hard sounding consonants are K, D, Q, T, B, P. The letters C and G can be either soft or hard.

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In my picture book, TURKEY SURPRISE, the pilgrim brothers have a song that they sing. It starts out—
We’re two mighty pilgrims
Coming your way…

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But I wrote a poem, not a song. After the book was published, a friend of mine read it to her daughter’s second grade class, and she sang the pilgrim’s song! “It works perfectly to the Beverly Hillbilly’s theme song!” she said.

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Maybe I am a bit ‘naturally’ musical! Words dance in my head and I sing from my soul. It’s getting it to sound like that on paper that’s the hard part. Eventually I get it. I just have to remember to listen to the music.

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poetry selections from A PET FOR ME POEMS, selected by Lee Bennett Hopkins, HarperCollins 200

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BIO
Peggy Archer grew up and spent most of her life in Northwest Indiana. She currently lives in O’Fallon, Missouri with her husband. She writes fiction, poetry and non-fiction for children and her work has been published in several children’s magazines.

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Peggy enjoys speaking to children and adults about books and writing. Her speaking experience includes elementary school through high school, and guest speaker at conferences and events for children’s writers.
When she is not writing, Peggy enjoys reading, walking and spending time with her grandchildren and her family.

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Her picture books include:

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Dogs

Dial Books for Young Readers 2010
ISBN: 978-0-8037-3322
also carried by Scholastic Book Club

• Name That Dog!, Dial Books for Young Readers, 2010
Name That Dog! was nominated for the 2012 Utah Beehive Award for Poetry, was on Grandparents.com’s Best Collections of Poetry Spring 2010. Name That Dog! is on the accelerated reader list at Renaissance Learning, and is on the Scholastic Book Club list.

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Dawn to dreams

Candlewick Press 2007
ISBN: 978-0-7636-2467-5

• From Dawn to Dreams, Poems for Busy Babies, Candlewick Press 2007
From Dawn to Dreams received a letter of merit from the Society of Children’s Book Writers & Illustrators Work-in-Progress Grant committee in 2002 and was nominated for the 2007 Cybil Award in the category of Children’s Poetry.

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Turkey Surprise

Dial Books for Young Readers
Illustrated by Thor Wickstrom
ISBN: 0-8037-2969-3
Puffin Books paperback edition
ISBN: 978-0-14-240852-0

• Turkey Surprise, Dial Books for Young Readers 2005
Turkey Surprise appeared on the NY Times Bestsellers list for children’s paperback books in November 2007 and was on Baker & Taylor’s Books for Growing Minds list in 2005. It is on the accelerated reader list at Renaissance Learning.

 

Thank you Peggy Archer!

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RhyPiBoMo Daily Lesson: Monday, April 14th
By Angie Karcher © 2014
Lesson 16

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Are you Naturally Musical?

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The gal in this video talks for about 8 minutes about why you should never say that you are NOT musically talented…She’s funny and yet, really sincere and I think everything she is saying about singing can be applied to writing poetry and rhyme. I think everyone can learn to feel the rhythm in music and in your words. It just takes practice, a never-give-up attitude and the desire to learn.

 

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Weeks ago, before I started writing these lessons, I was stuck, waiting on a train one night and listening to the radio in my van. Jim Brickman’s music/talk show was on and he was talking about his creative process. I attended a concert of his once and he is amazingly talented!

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I was stunned to learn that he does not typically read or write music. That’s not to say that he hasn’t learned the basics of it but generally, as a rule, he plays from the heart. He said that he hears a tune in his head and then hums or sings the tune into his phone recording ap if he’s away from the piano. Then, when he gets home, he sits down at the piano and the notes just come out. He said he knows it’s good if he remembers it without having to retrieve his phone recording.
He said he can play it over and over without ever writing it down.

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When asked how he manages to work with musicians, singers and full orchestras in his professional life he says that he pays someone else to write it down and create the scores for the others involved. The score writer listens to him play and puts it down on paper.

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Jim Brickman is naturally, musically talented.

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Jim Brickman

Jim Brickman

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Here is just a sampling of information from his official website:

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“Jim Brickman wouldn’t play by the rules. Literally. He was 8, taking private lessons from a piano teacher down the street from his parents’ Cleveland suburb home, but little Jimmy Brickman wouldn’t conform to the rudimentary regulations of piano playing, even after his piano teacher told his mother he “didn’t have the knack for this.” By the age of 12, Brickman found his mentor in the creative tutelage of a Cleveland Institute of Music graduate. As a child, Brickman had studied music at the prestigious conservatory and was honored in 2011 when the Cleveland Institute of Music established a scholarship in his name.

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That’s all this Shaker Heights, Ohio native needed to set his career in motion, and more than two decades later, Jim Brickman would become the most commercially successful instrumental pop pianist of the last three decades. Four of his albums have been certified gold by the Recording Industry Association of America – 1995’s By Heart, 1997’s Picture This and The Gift, and 1999’s Destiny – for sales of more than 500,000 copies. Overall, he’s sold more than 7 million albums.
He’s amassed 27 Top 40 singles on the adult contemporary charts, including 14 Top 10 smashes. – And…and…and…”

See more at:

http://www.jimbrickman.com/Home/About.aspx#sthash.Hft2oRD7.dpuf

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I share this with you because this is what being naturally talented is…
That being said, there are hundreds of thousands of successful, talented musicians who learned to read and play music the traditional way and are very successful at their chosen professions.

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His music teacher said that he didn’t have what it takes to play the piano…woops!

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How many people have told you NOT to write rhyming picture books?

Dr. Seuss got 27 rejections for AND TO THINK THAT I SAW IT ON MULBERRY STREET before he found his publisher.

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Mulberry Street

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My challenge for you today: Prove them wrong!

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This means that if you were not born with the natural talent to hear or feel the rhythm in your writing, it is still a goal worth attempting. You can easily learn how to feel the sound and musicality in words as you can in music…

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What does it take? Practice! Practice! Practice!

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And then Practice some more!

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We have learned a lot of the technical stuff about poetry and its involvement in the words we use to write for children. Now, it’s up to you to take what is available here and apply it to your words. You must believe that you can do it!

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I think what the funny lady in the video above was trying to express is stay positive, don’t bring yourself or others down by saying things like, “I have no rhythm” or “I can’t do this because I wasn’t born with that gene’

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We all must use our strengths to our advantage and fight even harder to overcome our weaknesses when it’s something worth doing!

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I share this quote with you by Mr. Dan Romano…

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“Music is the hardest kind of art. It doesn’t hang up on a wall and wait to be stared at and enjoyed by passersby. It’s communication. It’s hours and hours being put into a work of art that may only last, in reality, for a few moments…but if done well, and truly appreciated, it lasts in our hearts forever. That’s art. Speaking with your heart to the hearts of others.”

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The very same thing can be said for writing an exceptional rhyming picture book!

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Writing rhyming picture books, in my opinion, is the hardest genre of books to write…it’s poetry, it’s picture book, it’s oral literature, it’s early reader material, it’s the introduction to language and then some! That’s a lot of responsibility.

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You have landed here, on my blog for a reason. A spark fell from the sky and touched your soul and you consciously decided to see if you have what it takes.

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I’m thrilled to have you here with me on this journey and I know that you will figure out what path is best for you.

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Today’s post was really just a giant pep talk…I was a cheerleader back in 1985 and once a cheerleader, always a cheerleader! So…Go! Go! Go! And write that magical, rhyming picture book jam-packed full of all the alliteration, onomatopoeia and poetic devices possible, until it is bursting at the seams with your heart…your heart speaking to the heart of others!

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While you are writing today, listen to this album. Pretend that each note is a carefully chosen word in a picture book. The crescendos and the diminuendos are the conflict, the refrain is what keeps the plot moving and the big climax ending of the song is the conflict resolution. Close your eyes and listen.

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Writing Prompt: Now, make your words musical and joyful, like these songs.

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Jim Brickman – By Heart (Full Album)

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Enjoy!

Musicality in Writing Monday