Friday, August 31, 2012

Last Official Day of the Swamp Hop & Taking On The Whole Enchilada

This is the official last day for that SWAMP HOP. Do I hear huge sighs of relief? Try to muffle your joy, okay? The good thing about being last is these posts are not the least. There's a saying about that, right?

JESSICA HAIGHT of FAIRDAY-MORROW fame is interviewing me and the beauteous SHERI LARSON is doing a guest post-giveaway for Alligators Overhead. SAMANTHA MAY, bless her college-bound heart is also hosting me on this final Friday.

They're all great blogger, so I hope you'll pay them a visit, say hi, and join their blogs if you're not already a follower.

Now about this business of self-publishing. I promised I'd do some posts about three main decisions a writer has to make when embarking on this journey. I have to amend that after reading the wonderful comment by KAREN G. She pointed out, and rightfully so, the distinction between Small Presses and Presses that provide services for money. So I'm adding another major decision category and calling it the SMALL PRESS decision.


As to taking everything on your own shoulders, let's start by identifying just what "everything" means and looking at these tasks from my recent experience. I'm assuming you already have a website or a major blog and that's it's spectacular.

Editing (I'll only refer to proofreaders in this post and leave Development Editors and Copy Editors for another series): I will never again try to do final edits of my own work. I thought I could because I seem to be darned good at spotting errors in other people's writing. I have an excellent proofreader, and I usually rely on her, but she had to leave town on business and couldn't handle my job. I should have hired someone else, but I didn't. Do not make this mistake.

Cover Design: I'm a writer, not a designer, so while I selected the image of the alligators in their swamp, I wisely paid an artist to tailor the cover for my book. It's the font and the clever way he inserted the boys and the alligator inside those fonts that tweaked the image to make it fun and unique.

Book Trailer: (if you want one of these) I wanted one because I love these things and I often buy a book if the trailer pulls me into the story. Definitely, find someone to do this for you. I tinkered with one, but it only turned me off watching it. I wouldn't  have bought my own book if I'd published that.

Distribution: I'm still fuzzy on all of this, but my book is listed in Ingram's & Baker & Taylor. it's available in every eBook format that I know of, and I have what Mark Coker refers to as "quaint" print version.

Buzz: I've done this blog hop and I'm looking closely to see if that affects the sales of my book. I'm doing a goodreads giveaway and checking that for results as well. I'll probably be doing a FREE book promo over one weekend. I did a RADIO INTERVIEW, but I think that was more fun than buzz creating.

Reviews: I requested reviews from online bloggers. 15 have accepted either an eBook or a paperback for review. When I give a book away during a guest blog appearance, I ask those winners for a review, and if I win a book I'm sure to review it because of that Karma thing I happen to believe in. I also decided to sub the book to Kirkus Indie Reviews.

What did I miss? What would you do differently when tackling these parts of book publishing? Is the whole enchilada approach something you'd take on?

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Swamp Hop Has Been Fun

During this launch I've confirmed what I knew. 

  • Bloggers are wonderful. If you can stop in and see Susan Oloier and PK Hrezo today to say hello.
  • People who write and read books are special.
  • The business of publishing is shifting more and more rapidly. 
  • I have just so much tolerance for cats and their issues.

What I learned that is new to me is that this business seems to be coming full circle. At one time it was common place for authors to publish their own work, then as Joel Friedlander points out, "It wasn't until book publishing consolidated in response to industrialization and grew into a national industry that publishing your own work fell into disrepute." (Writers Digest, May/June 2012)

With the amazing advancement in technology that puts all of the publishing options into authors' hands the old model (agent, editor, publisher) is no longer the only model. Authors can offer their work as POD. They can make eBooks available in formats for any eReader, and they can still have hardcopies for those who prefer to hold a "real" book for sale on internet marketing sites.

All of this means authors have so many options that it can boggle the mind. Here are some of the main choices:

Take on the responsibility for the whole enchilada yourself.


Beat the bushes and find people who know what they're doing: web designers, illustrators, editors.


Turn your book over to a small press that will offer you packages to help you through the publishing process.

While I'm winding up my launch I'm going to do some research about these choices and share what I find out about them on my blog. I'll do it in small chunks because 1) that's about as much as I'll find out at any one time 2) I like small chunks.

As to the cats: Here's what I did. It was so simple once a visitor to a blog I was posting on told me. I offered them YODELING LESSONS. Those cats took that offer up in a shot. There will be no more Howl Ins. I'm free at last, AND you will no longer have to hear about my plight.

The Swamp Hop Still Under Seige. Lynn Nerd Kelly Sympathetic

Lynn Nerd Kelly reacts to CAT attitude.

The cats have returned from their conference. Some are willing to negotiate, some refuse. 

Negotiations have resumed. Fortunately, LYNN NERD Kelly has stepped in to bring all of you up to date on this issue. Please stop by and lend your support.

This CAT matter will be settled soon, then I'm going to the Bahamas and swim with these guys.  They aren't  sharks, are they?

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

The Golden Eagle Takes Over The Swamp Hop

Today I'm flying over the Swamp and what a view it is! Stop in for a few TEASERS and say hi. 


Monday, August 27, 2012

The Swamp Hop Moves Ahead

If you've got a book out and you'd like to talk about it to a few million people, here's one way. The Book Club Radio Program with John Austin. He does a mean interview. I've put mine here if you want to have sample of what happens. Once you're on the site, you can find a lot more.

Now about today . . . 
Five blogger/writers let the alligators visit. They even let me tag along on this part of the Swamp Hop!

Ruth Schiffmann goes OUT ON A LIMB and hosts Alligators Overhead. 

SUSAN KAYE QUINN let's me go on a bit more about characterization, so I hope you stop in and see us there.

Carrie Butler offers up my piece "Is It YA or MG?" on her supercalifragilisticexpialidocious blog, SO, YOU'RE A WRITER . . . 

and at Arlee Bird's TOSSING IT OUT I take my life in my hands and talk about "catnip and writers." I hate to even mention catnip these days. 

I'm very excited to be Empty Nest Insider's first ever guest! 

Don't dilly dally here today. I'm taking a nap before I start the last lap around the SWAMP. Remember I still have those ridiculous cats to deal with when they return from their conference. This story has an ending, so stay tuned! 

Thursday, August 23, 2012

The Swamp's The Happenin' Place

The swamp does seem to be where all the ACTION is today because Alligators is visiting three more great blogs. And that started me thinking about--of all things--writing stories.

I'm one of those writers who likes to start with characters, then figure out what their story should be. I'm a terrible plotter, so it takes me a while to start the story engine, and I guess that's why I  have to rewrite the beginning after I've written "The End." My beginnings are miserable in early drafts. They can put a couch to sleep, really.

When I do my final revisions, I jump between rewriting the first pages to rewriting further into the story, tweaking both until I get that engine firing on all cylinders from page one. What I've found is that a smoothly running plot is really all about bringing those characters to life on the page before I do anything else. To me the characters are where the real ACTION is.

I have a lot to say about this, but I'm going to start with one easy characterization technique, EXAGGERATION. I love this when I'm writing for kids, but I think it works for adult stories as well. Here's what I mean.

"Max towered over all the kids in the fifth grade and outweighed them by a bazillion pounds. He outweighed Josh by two bazillion." (The Aliens From Murrg, C. Lee McKenzie)

Sure Max might be big, but I wanted him to appear super big to the kids at school. The description is funny because it's impossible. It gives an idea to the reader that maybe this Max scares those kids, especially Josh, so there's a bit of plot hinted in this short characterization. I'm getting to the ACTION through the character.

"Girl, my fingernails could grow an inch just waiting for you." (High Hearts, Rita Mae Brown)

I loved this because how often have I waited for someone who is never on time, all the while wishing I had a way to express my frustration, humorously. Brown does that. I can see the friends in this scene, one tapping her foot, the other having just strolled up late again.

Do you use EXAGGERATION? Are characters your first entry into the story or do you try to figure out the plot first? I'll try to come up with another technique tomorrow and run it past you to get your take on what I do when crafting my stories. 

Now I hope you'll say hi to LM PRESTON whose newest book Flutter Of Love has just come out, but she's written several and here's another of her action-packed stories.

DARBY KARCHUT, who series is getting a lot of buzz and awards.

and DONNA MCDINE, who I've know since before I published anything, is going to host today and her interview is one I really enjoyed doing because I feel I've known her since I began this trip through book land. Hope you'll stop in and say hi to this award winning author who supports authors all the time. 

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Swamp Hop Goes to Hawaii & New Jersey . . .Then To A Fairday Place

Hawaii and New Jersey? Now how can you do that, you ask. Easy. I have super powers. Where do you think I get my ideas? Certainly not from any natural talent. What I can't steal, I conjure up. Plain and simple.

But where do ideas for our writing come from? So many writers say the seed of their book came from a news article or an overheard conversation or a trip. Ideas are those free floating, invisible bits that you happen on or that happen on you. Have you ever considered how many ideas you've missed? I often think that if I'd only turned left instead of right, I would have written a totally different book. If I'd only ordered Russian tea and not that cappuccino, another character would have materialized instead of the one that did. If I'd only gone to Spain and not to Turkey, the setting . . . You get the gist.

Where do your ideas come from? Do you remember what triggered that last novel or short story? Do you think about ideas you might be missing out on just by making one choice instead of another? Do you think I'm nuts? 

I hope you'll take a vacation with me as I say Aloha to MARK KOOPMANS. He's a wild and joyful guy with a smile as big as the islands. He'll make you laugh, so come say hi today.

Then in New Jersey the lovely CYNTHIA WILLIS has let me drop in for a visit with my book. She's another one with a winning smile and lots to say about writing and life. Here are her books. They came from some lovely ideas. Hope to see you there.

Now off to THE SECRET FILES OF FAIRDAY MORROW who gives Alligators Overhead a review.

Monday, August 20, 2012

Swamp Hop Back on Track . . .Almost

In "saner" times this blog connected with some great bloggers. One of them was Rach at RACH WRITES. Remember that wild month of April when we were A to Z all over the place? I saw a lot of these badges when I visit blogs, so I know you do.

During that month when daily blogging happened, I loved visiting Rach's site because she temped me with a challenging prompt that I had to use to create a response, using the letter of the day. Oy!

Rach's Prompt

Long story short. . . I started playing with those prompts and wrote the story so that each word started with the letter of the day. Another OY here, please. I didn't make it all the way through the alphabet ( I think I got to P) my computer gathered up what I now realize was an immense hairball (all very logical due to recent developments on the cat protest issue.) and I had to stop. 

I thought that since I was visiting Rach today I'd regale you with two of my A and Z stories from the A to Z Blogging Challenge, sort of a stroll down memory lane. Ready? I'll only subject you to two. Promise.

DAY C: Castaway Clara considered causality. Could Clara's condition cease? Cautiously, Clara ceded control, collapsed . . . comatose. 

DAY D: Diedre, dazed, decried, "Don't depart, Donald!" Donald dared defiance, decisively declaring, "Departure, dear Diedre, demands derring-do!" 

And so there you have the end to anyone asking me respond to writing prompt ever again. 

Friday, August 17, 2012

The Swamp Hop Goes Loopy

The LOOPINESS is all Alex Cavanugh's fault. Yes it is. I took his advice and offered up huge doses of CATNIP in hopes that when the cats returned to the negotiating table they'd be, well, mellow! This is what happened, instead. They can't meow straight let alone negotiate!

Anyway, the launch must go on and to help sooth my angst over these latest developments, Alex has offered to have me on his BLOG. Please visit me at his place. I'll definitely be there because I can't stay here with all these stoned cats. You all know Alex because he writes these books that everybody's talking about.

Then because I'm a very lucky writer, I get to take my Swamp Hop to MEDEIA SHARIF'S. She's cooked up some wonderful questions for me to answer. Tell me if I get any wrong, okay? Check out Medeia's book, too.  Is this a great cover, or what? If you know a little about me, you know my background is in intercultural communication, so I get excited about any book that smacks of intercultural themes. This one does, for sure!

LARISSA'S WORLD is a really beautiful blog, but she's agreed to let me mess it up a bit with some alligators and swamp mud. She is very kind, so come say hi, and then stay to tidy up, okay?

KAI STRAND is a busy writer who has two books out and a third almost here. Still she has time to host me and my Swampy Crew, so stop in, count some gators and say hi.

See you all soon!

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Swamp Hop Saga and Emotion

Today Alligators Overhead is featured at Angela Ackerman's Amazing The Bookshelf Muse . Her book will soon be in student hands in U. S. classrooms, and it's about a topic dear to my heart--our silent language. Very powerful in life and very powerful in fiction. Hope you'll stop in to say hi to me and to Angela today.  She's given me a chance to pontificate, write about Synopses, One Strategy. Please come take a look and say hi.

Jemi is a wonderful blogger at Just Jemie and she's kindly allowed me visit her there as well. If you don't follow Jemi, you're missing a lot of great posts.

Hope to see you at both blogs today. Gotta go so I can be in both places! 

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Swamp Hop Still On But Check Out Pinterest Along the Way

(My title for this post SU#2!!!K.) However, here's a great article from PW by Kate Messner about Pinterest that I thought readers might like. The other day when I was on Verla Kay's I expressed some concern about the copyright issue in the pinning and re-pinning on this media site; Kate responded by sending this link.


Today I'm visiting some more special bloggers. Kelly Hashway gives one of  my characters a chance to have his say about Alligators Overhead. Kelly writes across genres from Picture Books to Young Adult fiction. TOUCH OF DEATH (Spencer Hill Press, 1/15/13) & CURSE OF THE GRANVILLE FORTUNE (Month9Books, 1/21/ 14) Her picture book, May The Best Dog Win is a wonderful early book.

Cece is hosting me as well and if my writer's brain isn't totally on the fritz, there's a giveaway here.

And here's something special . . . I'm blasting off to Spacedock19 to talk to the marvelous M.Pax. I'm over the moon . . . well, not really. I'm this side of the moon, right Mary? I'll have to ask her where her Spacedock orbits. She doesn't mess around in space, either. Look at her lineup of publications.

I also have the great pleasure of being on Cheryl Rainfield's blog. Author of the realistic, contemporary Scars and Hunted.

I get so excited by all of this visiting. Don't dawdle around here today, but please come see what's going on at all this super sites.


Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Alligators Overhead On Its Swamp Hop Tour

Because writers are the most amazing people on the planet, I'm on this SWAMP HOP with my first ever middle grade novel. Here are some writers who are helping to make my launch happen and happen well.

Tuesday, August 14

Swamp Hop Schedule

Julie Musil is going to INTERVIEW today. (*Lee turns cartwheel, then dials her chiropractor.) I hope you'll pop by and say hello, then follow Julie's blog. She's a super blogger who introduces her readers to a lot of great books, but also pulls out what she learns by reading these books and shares it. One of her more recent posts on MATCHED was wonderful. I suggest you visit this post. It has some excellent writing tips.

Buddy, Mike Boyd's owner and trainer, will interview me today, too, on his Confessions of A Canine Couch Potato. Buddy is considering a position as MUSE, so if you're hiring one of those you might check out his credentials.

Beth Fred is hosting me on her blog, so I hope you'll paddle over and say hi. It's very pink over at her blog and very unswampy, so it will be a nice change from what you're seeing here these days.

Thanks and here's to a wonderful August.

Monday, August 13, 2012

Alligators Overhead Swamp Hop Moseys On

Thank heaven today is Monday and not Friday. I'm a little superstitious and Friday 13 always gives me a case of the jumps. So since this is the beginning of the week and my usual time to blog, I'm feeling kind of back to normal . . . whatever that is.

The Swamp Hop is hoppin' and I believe there are FREE BOOKS involved here and there during the month of August.

Since I am now imbued with super powers and can be in two places at one time,  visiting two  different and very important bloggers.

One is BISH DENHAM on RANDOM THOUGHTS TODAY. I love visiting her blog because a lot of the time it's like a mini-vacation to the Virgin Islands. Bish has fascinating stories to tell about growing up in this island paradise. Hope you'll pop in and say hi, then follow her blog if you don't already.

JENN HUBBARD is hosting me, too, on her Books of our Youth series. I always enjoy her series. She features a lot of different writers who share their thoughts on one topic, so you get to know a bit about the writers who create the stories you love to read. Here's one of her super books.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Swamp Hop & 5 Review Request Mistakes

If you've been following the AP story about my legal battle with the FFF, Federation of Feline Familiars, you'll be relieved to know that the cats have asked that negotiations be suspended until they return from their national conference. This gives me a breather and lets me get on with my launch. I'll be sure to keep you posted on the news when the FFF v C. Lee McKenzie battle resumes. *Sigh.

Today I'm visiting STEPHEN TREMP, author of the BREAKTHROUGH series. He's featuring me and those Alligators Overhead! Hope you have time to stop by and say hi! Since I'm going to be "hopping" a lot this month, I'll post daily (except Sat. and Sun.) the rest of August with links to all the bloggers who are supporting me. Hope you'll stop in, and visit these blogs. They're always worth the time because they share so much information about our craft and the business of publishing.

One thing we know as writers is that after we write, then publish, our work has just begun. We want visibility, and one way to get that is through REVIEWS. Since reviewers don't usually knock at our door asking if they can read our book, we're the ones who have the "leg work" to do. Today it's not so much the legs that we exercise, but our eyes and our nimble fingers get quite a work out.

If we're going to put in all that time and energy finding reviewers and contacting them, we best do it right. I found this great article that gives writers 5 REVIEW REQUEST MISTAKES. They are right on. Find the link below.

Do you have any mistakes or any positive suggestions for how to approach reviewers? Add them, please.
       5 mistakes to avoid when requesting a book review As writers with a book freshly out on the market, we are all in dire need of reviews to promote the first steps of our baby in the cruel publishing scene. This means finding reviewers. Of course, writers almost always being readers, we already have…

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Author Retaliates Goes to Bloggers for Support

August 8

Hadleyville, U.S.A (AP)--An ongoing conflict between the Federation of Feline Familiars (FFF) and the Alliance of Alligators Overhead (AAO) has come to a head. Both sides have agreed to negotiate with the author, C. Lee McKenzie, and those negotiations continue behind locked doors.  Thanks to supporter Alex Cavanaugh and E. J. Wesley, she is now in communication with the K-9 Collective; however, only the Malamute chapter has responded to lend a hand. They've sent contributions of three doggie rawhide bones and one ball with bell. The alligators ate them.  She asks that any other contributions be sent the local animal shelter in the name of the cause.
Malamute Chapter sends donations, but remains Switzerland in negotiations.

The story unfolds here: August 3. August 6. August 7.

C. Lee Tries to Reason with Negotiator
In the meantime, C. Lee has taken her case to the bloggers in hopes of stirring interest in her newly released middle grade novel, Alligators Overhead. At this time, she has refused to rewrite the story, replacing cats with alligators. As she said during a brief recess earlier today, "I have artistic control over this project, and I refuse to allow any of that control to slip through my fingers . . . even to those cuddly FFF members."

When asked how she plans to deal with her book launch and these negotiations, she replied, "Very carefully. However, I will proceed with my book launch as planned and I hope followers will be able to get beyond the ugliness of the situation and stop by the different bloggers to add their support at sites I visit."

Catherine Stein, author of FireSee One support beleaguered author.
C. Lee will be at Catherine Stein's IDEA CITY today and, as she told this reporter, ". . .carrying on as if nothing is amiss. I hope my readers will stop in to leave a comment and forget that I'm embroiled in a nasty dispute about rewriting and threats of book banning."

We contacted the FFF and the AAO, but lawyers for each side have asked that neither side speak to the press.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Howl-In Successful. Author Comes to Negotiating Table

August 7

Author Prepares for Negotiations
Hadleyville, U.S.A. (AP)-- In a surprise move, author, C. Lee McKenzie offered to come to the table and negotiate terms with the Federation of Feline Familiars. (Follow previous stories leading to this latest development. August 3 August 6)

Townspeople are now bracing themselves for protracted negotiations between the two sides and hoping that the conflict can be resolved peaceably.

When the leader of the Alliance of Alligators was interviewed, he stated "The Ornofree alligators want the two parties to come to an amicable agreement; however, should the author succumb to the feline demand for a rewrite and a replacement of alligators in the leading role of this story, she should be prepared for a law suit. We've already made our position very clear and Ms. McKenzie knows we are firm in our stance on this matter. We have 65 million years of endurance to call upon. And thick hides."

Cenozo Gator, tribal leader,  certain McKenzie won't buckle.

The Federation of Feline Familiars claim that Alligators Overhead threatens a way of life for future generations of cats. "We cannot allow our jobs to go away, and that is exactly what will happen if we allow this crack in the door."

Federation of Feline Familiars bring out youngster to add clout to their demands. 
C. Lee McKenzie is now in seclusion; however she has promised a few interviews in the near future. "I'm in shock," she told reporters today. "Cats on one side. Alligators on the other. I hope you'll understand my need for privacy at this time.

Monday, August 6, 2012

Protests Continue. Cats Demand Rewrite.

August 6

Hadleyville, U.S.A (AP)Hundreds  of protesters converged on the Hadleyville complex again last night. The "Howl In" began at midnight and continued until authorities arrived and arrested several of the more obstreperous cats.
"It's a 'rent-a-cat' strategy, pure and simple," the mayor declared. "And it must end."
Albert Wisecat seen here with his chief consort, Mitzi French in a more relaxed moment.
Albert Wisecat refuses to back down in his demands for a complete rewrite of Alligators Overhead. He went on record as saying, "Either she does a rewrite or we continue in our demands for this book to be banned."
Champion of the Undercat might be amenable to author's tuna offer.
The author, C. Lee McKenzie is holding her ground and refusing to bow to the pressure. "I've featured cats in both of my previous books. It's time for a change. I will not give in to their demands." She did offer to ease their pain and suffering by donating a case of dolphin safe tuna to the next Feline Familiar Conference. Champion of the Under Cat, aka Sly, agreed to take the offer to his constituents.
Meanwhile, the author is continuing in her book launch. She optimistically stated, "I'm sure the Feline Familiars will come to their senses and agree to stop this protest."
In an effort to overcome the mounting negative publicity, C. Lee Mckenzie is posting helpful hints on things she learned while preparing to launch this most recent and most controversial book.

"One thing about doing a book launch is you learn a lot and meet a lot of people who are willing to help you out. Here are a few things I've learned," she said during our interview.

  • Ask for "help-advice"when you need it.
  • Listen and take any 'help-advice" from those who are successful launching their books.
  • Don't rush. You're going to make a lot of mistakes anyway and rushing only increases the number of mistakes.
  • Organize your hop or your tour or your whatever. Linky is a good way to do that. It collects all the participants and their contact information in one place.
  • Have all your links and your posts as complete as possible, so you don't have to send additional information later. I know I like setting my posts up ahead of schedule, so it saves time if I only have to do that once for each post.
  • Remember, this is a network, so help others when they need it. 
  • Once your guest post is up, visit that page, tweet, post the link on fb and respond to the comments. That interaction helps you and your host. It widens your network of bloggers and readers.
  • Above all, enjoy the beejeebers out this event.  
If you can, leave more "help-advice" for us in a comment and if at all possible I'd appreciate letters to your congressmen and women supporting my fight against the unfair treatment by the  Federation of Feline Familiars.

Friday, August 3, 2012

Breaking News Here on The Write Game

August 3, 2012


"Intolerable," says Albert Wisecat. "This must stop."

Cats maintain that never in history have alligators been privileged to serve as familiars. The head of the Federation of Feline Familiars rallies member to rise up an put an end to the alligator take over.

Federation of Feline Familiars marched in protest and demanded book be BANNED.

Hadleyville, U.S.A. (AP) — All alligator operations were temporarily halted Wednesday at the highly secret Hadleyville complex that is famous for its alligator witch familiars when Albert Wisecat led his well-organized team of feline protesters. This militant crew were able to intrude into a high-security area over the weekend.

The temporary stand-down is expected to end by next week. Special service teams of the Ornofree swamp alligators, and contractor security personnel will undergo training and refresher instruction.

The protesters were found hanging banners in the dark, howling and offering to share catnip with the security guards at the Hadleyville complex, officials said. They were arrested.

The complex has never gotten protesters and activists on their site, but since the publication of Alligators Overhead, they've experienced a constant hounding, which they now refer to as "catting." 
    The head of the Ornofree Alligator tribe was reported as saying, "These cats are messing with the wrong group. We are highly organized and have several generations of successful interaction with the witches of Hadleyville. The Feline Familiars should be content with the rest of the world and leave this part to us."

Champion of the Under Cat Speaks 

We will not allow jobs to go to another species. Alligators have their place and it is not as witch familiars."


Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Insecure Writer Succumbs to Poetry

Insecure writer me
How on earth came this to be?
In days before this passion came
My writing ne'er appear so lame. 
So tell me please why now mere words 
Jay Hilgert

And now your turn. Some poetry to express yourself? 
I think we should have an Insecure Writer Poetry Contest
 with prizes, of course.
Your thoughts? Gemme some words before they fly away.

Flit past my brain like agile birds,
Not lighting on the page the way
I'd planned they'd perch and there to stay.
Instead these feathered shadows fly 
Before the ink I can apply.