writing

A writing prompt from A.L. Glennon

A.L. Glennon has never used a writing prompt to start a story. She is more of a visual writer. She’s provided us with this fun challenge to help stimulate some of those creative juices for aspiring writers! 

THE CHALLENGE: 

Open the first magazine you see to a random page and use the photo there to inspire a few lines!

Share with us what you came up with in the comments! Or tag us on social media with the image and your first few lines. We’d love to hear from you!

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Angela Glennon on her debut novel, Wait for It!

AL Glennon1Wait for It, a contemporary young-adult novel with fantasy elements by new Ink Smith author, A.L. Glennon. In Wait for It, three teens take the journey of an afterlifetime, traveling to Hell and back, looking for meaning in great art, bakery-fresh éclairs, and, of course, their relationships with each other.

For Glennon, writing a story is easy and fun. “Rewriting and revising it, though, are torture! I stress over every word and punctuation mark,” she said. She started writing poems and stories in the first grade and has been writing on and off ever since. For Glennon, it’s not an interest, it’s an obsession.

While writing Wait for It, Glennon said one thing she learned was that you have to trust your characters to take you where you need to go next. Even if those characters are leading you straight to Hell, like her characters Martin, Zeke, and Zelda!

Writing is not an easy feat, and writer’s in the past have told us that if they could go back and change something about the book they would. But not Glennon. “Perhaps in hindsight I’ll feel differently, but after all the years of editing, tweaking, adding, and deleting, I think I’d like to leave it just as it is now, thank you very much.”

Inspiration comes from many places, but Glennon thinks it all leads back to one. “Love. I might even go so far to argue that love inspires everything humans create.” But Glennon isn’t just a romantic, she’s got a little bite!

When asked about her writing style, Glennon asked, “Could sarcasm be considered a style?” We think so! She noted that she tries not to take herself or her fictional friends too seriously, even when writing about serious subjects. Her light, flowing words in Wait for It can attest to that—but Glennon still manages to make you feel what her characters are feeling without drowning you in every emotion.

If there is any takeaway to her novel, Glennon wants readers to know that everyone deserves a second chance, “Or in Zeke’s case, sixty chance[s]!”

And if you’re an aspiring writer, Glennon has some advice too. “Just keep writing! Enjoy the process and the time you get to spend alone with your characters in those precious weeks/months/years before you let anyone else meet them.”

Glennon’s debut novel with Ink Smith Publishing, Wait for It, is due out Summer 2019.  Make sure to keep an eye out, the cover reveal is coming! And with it, an opportunity to win a signed copy!

“Thank you so much for taking this journey with Marin, Zeke, and Zelda! (And me!)” Make sure to follow A.L. Glennon on Twitter @ALGlennonAuthor for updates on her book Wait for It!.

 

Belong by Bella Larsen

 

Early in the morning
Before alarms or the sun
I hide from my anxiety
Content with feeling none
Once I go about my day I start to feel it creep inside
But for now, I feel peace
Anxiety is at low tide
I’m with the love of my life
Cuddling in bed
He’s laying into my chest
While i rub his hair and head
We listen to songs
Or simply just be
Here, in our little cocoon,
I don’t ever want to leave.
He tells me he dreamt of our future
Where we have both a son and a daughter
“She was beautiful and had your eyes,” he says
I can’t wait to see him as a father
This life I am living
Feels as though it’s from my dreams
Sometimes it feels too good to be true
And it’ll be ripped from me at the seams.
So when these thoughts sneak in
And scare away my calm
I take a deep breath and cuddle into my love
Content with knowing this is where I belong.

 

 

About Bella

Bella Larsen is a writer, poet, pisces, dreamer, empath, and overthinker. You can find her work on her blog, My Soul Told Me To and on Instagram @mysouldtoldmeto.

Untitled, Too by Bella Larsen

I’ve taken my expectations
I have for myself
And dropped them down
Down
Down
D
O
W
N
From where I kept them held high
And now they’re on the ground.
Maybe now I’ll stop feeling like I am
Not enough, not doing enough
If I let the air out
I mean
The pressure
If I take away the pressure I put on myself
Maybe I’ll learn again how to let
Just being
Be More
Than enough

 

 

About Bella

Bella Larsen is a writer, poet, pisces, dreamer, empath, and overthinker. You can find her work on her blog, My Soul Told Me To and on Instagram @mysouldtoldmeto.

National Poetry Month: Edgar Allan Poe

84477_v9_ba.jpgEdgar Allan Poe is one of the most known writers/poets among readers and non-readers alike. His name, and his work, are dark and emotional. “I became insane, with long intervals of horrible sanity,” is one of Poe’s famous quotes. And done of the best quotes to describe his work, in my opinion.

And everyone recognizes Poe’s raven. “‘Tell me what thy lordly name is on the Night’s Plutonian shore!’/Quoth the Raven, “Nevermore.”‘ When Poe’s name is mentioned, the first thing I picture is the raven flying; and of course a heart under the floorboards.

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His work was one of the turning points in my interest in poetry as a high school student. I know that a lot of my peers felt the same way. Even those who were not avid readers like myself have found great interest in Poe’s works. The darkness he portrays, the madness, the use of symbols most often related to omens (both good and bad!), and the vivid imagery all have played a significant part in the macabre curiosity in Poe’s work.

Today we recognize Poe for his writing and influence in the poetry realm. Happy National Poetry Month Poe!

 

About Corinne

CA Bio ImageCorinne has her MFA in Writing from Lindenwood University and her MPS in Publishing from George Washington University. She has been an editor at Ink Smith Publishing and Native Ink Press since 2013, taking over the company in 2019. Since her first trip to the library when she was a toddler, Corinne has been collecting books, recommending her favorites, and providing commentary on the less-than-stellar. Her belief is that if you have a problem, it’s nothing that a good book can’t solve.

Independence Day (1996) by Greg Lehman

Name something good
about a place where nobody dies,
some endless beach of a world,
temperate, well-lit, so calm
the ennui has room to grow solid
on the air,

and the people you’re with
will never go anywhere else, every
bit of them, inelegant,
prone to bumbling
the weight of balance I need
to be who I am, their pact
against composure
unbreakable, keeping peace
from ever hovering down
to find you again.

I can’t see it either.
The way things are
there just isn’t a way
around moving from one spigot
to another, draining worlds
into our hands and the hands
of our young. Come on. You
do it, too.

Still, like anyone,
we could be mistaken,
so if you can do better
we’ll hear you out.

But do not expect us
to not be proactive
in the meantime.

 

 

About Greg LehmanGREGGGGGGY_B&W-25

Greg Lehman earned an MFA in creative writing from Lindenwood University and a BA in journalism from California State University at Fullerton. He has published and edited as a professional journalist, and continues to pursue the field through his website loudowl.org. He also enjoys writing short fiction and novels, as well as poetry, sometimes

  

Ghosted by Greg Lehman

I never saw the poet again,
leaving things hanging
is far from silent, quiet
like a needle’s pain

around a sound
that must be there
between skin
and the finest of points, I

can’t name its pitch, maybe
she heard it, but would not
lend her volume, unwilling
to lend a clear medium

as this puncture sank, pulling
a knot that caught nothing, not
one word, graceless or the limit
she put on grace,

but what better reply
than the one that tells you
which timbre
lacks credence?

What is more graceful
than the clarity of pain
as explicit as skin
and a needle? Poise

is a gift, a plunge,
a finely cut form for knowing
where rhythms will land
before the first stanza
can end.

 

About Greg LehmanGREGGGGGGY_B&W-25

Greg Lehman earned an MFA in creative writing from Lindenwood University and a BA in journalism from California State University at Fullerton. He has published and edited as a professional journalist, and continues to pursue the field through his website loudowl.org. He also enjoys writing short fiction and novels, as well as poetry, sometimes.   

Running in Santa Ynez Mountains by Greg Lehman

1. I told myself
I went left at the river,
that taking the sound
of water
would bring me back home.

2. The bobcat glared
at the edge where asphalt
meets earth, until
she looked my way,
took her time disappearing
long before
I was anywhere close.

3. No matter where
a raptor might find you,
or which one it is,
osprey, owl,
hawk, harrier, kite,
vulture, eagle,
or caracara, they are always
above where they are,
even the trail
we share for a moment,
the steps I take
are worlds below eyes
that see everything
and see through it, decide
what to take
with talons as hooked as fate,
just as sharp, sparing nothing.

4. The downgrade gentles impact,
robs the brunt of each footfall
in tandem with how much restraint
I let go, trades
prudence out, it’s scary,
this is steep, this
can fuck me up
riding legs
that have never been
more my own.

 

 

About Greg LehmanGREGGGGGGY_B&W-25

Greg Lehman earned an MFA in creative writing from Lindenwood University and a BA in journalism from California State University at Fullerton. He has published and edited as a professional journalist, and continues to pursue the field through his website loudowl.org. He also enjoys writing short fiction and novels, as well as poetry, sometimes.   

Corporate Yin Yang by Will Collins

I breathe like the spring time.

Inhale like a lion,
Exhale like a lamb.

I talk big of my dreams,
I act small from my cubicle.

So juxtaposed,

Like taking Ambien
With a gulp of espresso.

 

About Will Collins

Will Collins is currently a nurse in Toms River, NJ, living with his three dogs who are a handful.  He graduated Richard Stockton University of NJ before becoming a nurse with a major in Spanish language and culture and writing.  When not at work, he can be found writing, skateboarding, and hiking or bird watching. His poetry is currently not published, so he says this is an exclusive treat!

Water by Will Collins

As a nurse
I learned that amongst the bone scaffolding
And water balloon organ mechanics
We are mostly water

I have been so fluid in my life.
A chameleon drowning who’s
His own worst enemy

Writer turned estimator turned mailman,
Turned nurse turned cubicle dweller,
Riding a bank account too weak for
More student loans
And a resume too broad to
Fit the next mold
While searching for greener pastures

I’ve always been the stream
That flows effortlessly through
A keyhole to grass greener
Only to be the same shade of
Jaded when I step foot on
The dew soaked lawn of another
Early morning prospect

I am made of water,
But even so,
there may never be a day’s work
I find that doesn’t feel like work
And quenches the thirst of this
Dripping mess body

 

 

About Will Collins

Will Collins is currently a nurse in Toms River, NJ, living with his three dogs who are a handful.  He graduated Richard Stockton University of NJ before becoming a nurse with a major in Spanish language and culture and writing.  When not at work, he can be found writing, skateboarding, and hiking or bird watching. His poetry is currently not published, so he says this is an exclusive treat!