New Chapter

As I prepare to start a new chapter in my life I want to take a moment to express my gratitude for all the blessings in my life. I have been blessed with a supportive and loving family.

It was all the love and support that allowed me to grow as a person and complete my educational goals.  When I enrolled in a local community college many years ago  I thought I knew what I wanted to do.

I thought that I wanted to be a paralegal. At 19 years old I thought this was the right path for me.

When I finally completed my Associate’s degree I discovered that I was a different person and I wasn’t sure that I wanted to work in a law office. A few years later I enrolled in a program at a local college.

Now, I was sure that I wanted a double major in history and political science. One year later, I transferred to another school.

Once again I changed my major.

I changed my major to English.

I have learned that I am constantly growing, changing, and evolving. The goals  I set today may change tomorrow.

One day, I had an assignment to write a piece of flash fiction and I found myself very happy.  The biggest challenge I have had over the years is coming to terms with calling myself a writer. Now, I call myself a writer.

Today, I committed myself to a new chapter of my life.

I am starting chapter one of a new book.

The ending is not quite ironed out yet but the words have been set down on the page.Here are some links to some of the unexpected turns in my story:

https://www.setonhill.edu/news/detail/delia-marrero-receives-first-harlequin-diverse-voices-scholarship/

I Have to Write a Bio…

I have to write a bio for a scholarship that I received. I am nervous about writing it.

Honestly, I have a hard time talking about myself. I try to hide in the shadows and avoid being seen. but writing a bio forces me out of the shadow.

In the shadows I can be anything at anytime.

Emerging from the shadows means that I have to enter into the light. My light is writing. I have toyed with the idea of being a writer for a very long time and it never really sticks. I started this blog many moons ago to explore writing. I started out with poetry but overtime I changed my flow.

While I love poetry and will probably continue to dabble in the art I realized that I write better stories. This past year has forced me to slow down and have some honest conversations with myself. These conversations showed me that I was not living authentically and in order to do so I needed to commit to my writing.

So I decided to start applying for MFA programs.

I got accepted and now I have to write a bio for a scholarship that I received.

Here’s to the spaces between the words that I wrote at odd hours of the day.

The Return

This post lays between a poem and blog like two pages stuck together in your favorite book.

On the page where your favorite passage rests.

I took a break.

I lost my way in a hazy maze sometime in October- of some year.

I forgot what I enjoyed about writing.

I forgot how to write.

Maybe, I didn’t forget.

Maybe, I was ignoring the desire, the calling, the muse.

I just let myself fall off the wall refusing to let the kings-men help.

I moved around, numb, on my own endless hamster wheel, living a never-ending rut.

Then, suddenly, I find the desire and joy in writing.

I may not write all the time.

I may not be as consistent as I like but I am here, again.

I fall, over and over again and I like my wounds, I tend to them until they have healed.

I discover the urge that excited me was visiting Rip Van Winkle for a much needed slumber.

Maybe, I had nothing to write about and that’s ok.

Push button start, ignition, READY, SET, WRITE.

Copyright © Delia Marrero 2019 All rights reserved.

‘Tis The Season…

‘Tis the season to revel with family and focus on being. ‘Tis a time for joy. ‘Tis the time for shopping, buying toys for boys and girls.

BAH HUMBUG…

I spent many holidays trying to fill the space between the floor and my Christmas tree with wrapped presents. On Christmas morning my kids were so excited to rip open wrapping paper and play with their new toys. Then, a week later those toys were sitting in the toy box. Small pieces were found beneath the sofa and under the sofa-cushion in the dark spaces where the cushion meets the couch.

As a young mom, I really couldn’t afford Christmas but I went out of my way to do so. I wanted to give my kids everything that I could.  I didn’t want them to be left out when they returned to school, but one day I decided enough was enough.

I couldn’t afford to fill a tree with items that would just be disregarded in a few weeks. I stopped burdening my finances. I realize that I buy them needs and wants all year long. I taught my children to understand that I cannot always buy the wants but I will do my best. What this has taught my children:

  1. To be content with anything that they get. (If you ask my kids what they want for Christmas they usually don’t have an answer.)
  2. If they want something and I can’t afford to buy it,  they save their money until they have enough for the item.

I guess I have come to dislike the holiday over time. The years have shown me how we put a monetary value on the meaning of Christmas. I think that we forget about what we should focus on which is eating food and drinking coquito.

Copyright © Delia Marrero 2018 All rights reserved.

The Lost Key

Blogging is an adventurous outlet. A journey I never thought I would embark upon.

I like to think of it as my public journal. A place where I can explore good and bad ideas.

My first journal was a bright red book with cute pictures of lipstick on it and some other things. What I remember is the small key that opened the brass colored lock. I held that key up to the light as though I had discovered some ancient artifact. I recall being filled with dread as I held that key.

What if I lose it? 

The thought scared me. What if I lost the only way to access my deepest thoughts? I had no idea then how easy it was to break the lock but that thought consumed me. I would write, write, and write, until one day I lost the key.

For me, losing that key meant I would never be able to see my words again. I would lose all the writing I had about mean girls. I would lose the secret crushes of my very long life of nine years and I would never be able to write again.

I always had this fear of losing my work.

So as a writer I backup my works and back up the backup. I have a hard copy, I email my self, I save it to my computer and I have a supply of flash drives to backup the backups.

I am sure many other writers fear the dreaded computer crash or that moment when you accidentally delete everything.

And, it happens. It seems to happen when you just finished the ending or revised your final draft (as if there really is such a thing as a final draft) and, you have not backed it up.

One day it happened to me (gasp), the laptop crashed and I didn’t back everything up. I was upset. Not only did I lose the works I also lost my writing companion. That laptop was where I first explored the idea of being a writer. It was pearl white and I had a The World’s Best Mom sticker on it.

I lost my key again.

Then, I replaced that laptop and now I remember to back up the backup. I make multiple copies of the key.

Copyright © Delia Marrero 2018 All rights reserved.

A Dog And My Blog

I write to engage the reader but how do I engage a reader with new and stimulating content when I feel the content getting stale?

A few months ago I found myself enthralled by Vu Le who was speaking at a local event  he stated and I misquote, “Everything is better with kittens.” He proceeded to show a slide of a baby kitten and it was cute, then he continued to talk about the nonprofit world. For me, the take away is that it’s important to have visuals in your blog to engage the reader and there is something about baby animals that make people take notice.

I don’t have a baby kitten but I have my rescued dog…

Jethro

This is a picture from 7 years ago. Now that you are mesmerized by my dog continue reading.

When I first started writing and blogging I was excited.  Ideas were always racing through my head. I had content and I was dumping it into my blog.

Now, I find it hard to finish what I write. I find that writing has become a chore over time. Now it feels forced and stale.

As I try to figure out my words I am left with this question: Where and how do I begin?

This past year has led me to question my identity as both an artist and person. My writing has troubled me for quite some time as I try to find inspiration in my daily life, workshops and writing groups. The writer is hibernating as I sift through the rest of my being.

I am examining old stories and poems, revising and editing trying to find what works again.

I just have to keep chipping away, piece by piece at the boulder that is blocking my path.

Copyright © Delia Marrero 2018 All rights reserved.

Releasing Writing Fears #2

I love the complexity of language and the intricacies of fabricating worlds.

Worlds that are created between the pages of a spine, so I must continuously read. It is my belief that the love of writing should come from the love of reading.

All writers should read and read everything because when you are done reading then the fun begins.

You can now begin twisting thoughts and plots in order to make something new.

I read because I love the beauty of words, I write because I want to imitate this beauty. I want to mimic what came before and write my own version.

I often avoided writing because avoidance was easy.  I would avoid creating avoid the voice inside urging to be set free.

Avoidance.

I want to create and I understand that creating requires commitment.

And I must commit to writing it all down but it’s so much easier to avoid the commitment.

In order to be a writer, I must be committed to my craft and avoidance is a self-imposed death sentence imposed upon my pen.

As a writer I am the messenger, the pen is the vessel, and the story controls my hand. I believe that I can’t control the outcome of my writing; the only thing I control is the task of getting the words out on the paper.  I may be the author, but my characters create the stories and it is their lives which dictate the outcome of my pen.

I will no longer avoid writing, I refuse to avoid the moments that the muses call out to me and I make every effort to jot down the ideas when they come to me. I continue to write because that is what I am meant to do.

Releasing Writing Fears

I like writing but I am hesitant about sharing. Self-doubt, apprehension, and fear continuously rear their putrid heads over and over again.  The self-doubt and apprehension lead me to write. In part, I believe that this is an oxymoron because the fear and apprehension should make me run from the craft.

The exploration of my language leaves me at a loss sometimes. I am lost in my thoughts and words— constantly. I am lost in observation and I am lost in the wonderment of exploration. I can explore the darkest thoughts of my mind and create something truly unique or I can create a poem that embraces every romantic idea I have ever come across and yet somehow, I feel it’s never good enough.

It’s not good enough so it’s not worth sharing.

I have so many creations, characters, and plots that are begging for exposure.

They haunt my thoughts daily.

They chase me down dark damp dreary desolate corridors.

They rush to the forefront seeking the spotlight in the world. They long to enter the minds of others and leave behind an impression of existence.

And, then, there is me.

I stand in the way of everything. I place myself between the world and my words.

Is this intentional sabotage or uncertainty? It may be both.

So I have decided to make myself uncomfortable!   I am trying to share more, I am seeking exposure, albeit, baby steps but nonetheless steps in the WRITE direction.

The first thing I did was enter a poetry contest. This forced me to create and compile a collection of my poetry. A total of 51 poems which explore my love of poetry by exploring the concepts of identity, love, sex, fear, torment, nature, and any other experience of the human existence I could muster up from the left and right hemispheres of my brain.

I am also going to continue my novel, a multi-cultural contemporary romance novel sprinkled with history. The book explores the harsh realities of love, loss, grief, trauma, history and there is the possibility of happiness (this is still to be determined).

And—for my last trick there are these short stories I have been working on. Sorted little tales I take the most pleasure in writing.

I am exploring the world of writing, my world of writing. I am going to take the time and cultivate my craft and figure out what I will do with it in the next few months.

I invite you to share your writing fears, inhibitions or apprehensions. Expose them, explore them then release them.

Dear Lady Liberty

Dear Lady Liberty,

As you stand in the harbor watching over our nation, I imagine the tears falling down your face. I imagine your heart has been broken by the problems we have created. I imagine that as you are standing in the harbor you are watching how we systematically kill your children.  Today, you are the figure of a mother burying her children.

We will destroy the liberty and freedom we fought to create over the years. Marches occurred to fight for our rights, but overnight we seemed to forget the power “We the people” have. We continue to marginalize groups of people because they are different.

We have forgotten our past and ignored our history. We have tried to erase it. We have ignored the wound and now it is infected, and I apologize. Lady Liberty. I apologize for not taking care of your children or valuing the idea of freedom and liberty.

I apologize for the lack of effort to promote unity.

I am sorry.

I will apologize to you when the rest of the nation is in turmoil. I apologize while everyone else ignores that movements and moments start at home.

I have hope that we learn how to respect our differences. I hope that we will not forget our past. I hope, that we learn how to improve our future. I hope that as a nation, we figure out how to move forward together.

I hope that as the turmoil subsides we learn that we all must be part of the solution. Sitting by is no longer an option. I hope that we learn that small actions matter just as much and large ones.  I hope that we realize that change starts and ends with our efforts We have to stand up and move forward together.

We cannot forget the harsh truth of our past.  The hurt and pain we have faced as a nation. We cannot forget how you, Lady Liberty, witnessed what we have become as a nation. How we have built ourselves up by oppression. You watch how we beat down on others just to build up this American identity—an American identity which spans beyond the white skin or brown skin or yellow skin or tan skin, that any one of us possess. Our history is ugly, but our future can be great.

Our present should not be a movement to rewind the clock.

Lady Liberty, I extend my hand to offer you hope. All is not lost, but these are trying times.

I hope that I will leave a better nation for my children, for your children and all children.

I hope that we take back the power that we have been given as citizens and exercise our rights.

I hope that we understand.

Love,
Hopeful America

Copyright © Delia Marrero 2017 All rights reserved.

The Poet & Writer

I want to be a poet, so I say “I am a poet.” I want to be a writer, so I say “I am a writer.” I have these tales in my head I write them down. I have these poems I place in this dumping ground. They’re rough draft versions that need much work.

Editing- that’s what they need.

Editing, the dreaded daunting task of correcting my own work. In this exercise, I stab my piece and make it bleed. Slashing the prose of my mind, I become the killer—my very own horror movie. Holding a knife I cut through the surface of ideas, what a bloody mess! I begin stitching together the remains- I’m creating Frankenstein.

I have blood on my hands.

I must massacre all my hard work.

The blood, sweat, tears and hand cramps didn’t create an impeccable first draft. I do not want to hack away any piece of them, of the story or the lines of poems. I am, emotionally invested in the purpose of my prose.

Weaving together intricacies, creating new identities, giving life to the characters you read. Even made up people have feelings too!

I know that what I have is a draft. I know that I must continue to create.

I know that I must learn to walk away.

Breathe and take a break.

To write and create!