Here we are...

...a group of Baby Boomers of sundry religious,
political and cultural orientations, who have been
meeting at the Voorheesville Public Library since 1991
to read and discuss each other's poems.

We include old fathers and young grandmothers,
artists and musicians, and run-of-the-mill eccentrics.
Writers are welcome to stop in and stay if they like us.

Some of Us

Some of Us
Dennis Sullivan, Beverly Osborne, Tom Corrado, Edie Abrams, Art Willis, Alan Casline (all seated); Paul Amidon, Mike Burke, Tim Verhaegen, Mark O'Brien, Barbara Vink, Philomena Moriarty

Friday, January 4, 2008

From Tim

THE FOLLOWING IS A GUEST POST from Tim which he left in the comments box and I thought should be posted instead: (I don't agree with the first one, but hey...)

I love this book I’m reading about writing. I’m quoting some statements from Pat Walsh that I think would be helpful to all writers.
“You Don’t Trust Your Audience – If you write something you would not need to be told yourself or have explained to you, take it out.”
“You Do Not Know Your Audience – Gertrude Stein got it right, when she said she wrote for herself and strangers…Never have your friends and family in mind or you will be hobbled by worry about what they think…It is difficult to maintain a high degree of honesty if you are concerned about misperceptions from loved ones.” This one was great for me.
“The spoken word and the written word are cousins, not identical twins, Each has its place and needs to be respected, but a writer’s focus should be on the page and he should not let a vocal bias mask his weaknesses.”
This part was awesome for me writing too much gay stuff:“You Do Not Realize that Nobody Cares – Somewhere along the line. however, many writers lose the ability to discern between what is interesting to a reader and what is interesting to them….Use your inside knowledge to add authenticity and intricacy, but do not cut yourself a slice of life that makes other people want to end theirs…. When something is very important to you, it may be hard to see that it is very unimportant to everybody else. If you feel a personal catharsis when writing or reading…that might be a bad sign…. Readers are not going to care about you simply because you care about you…”
“You Preach – do not blatantly tell readers what is right and what is wrong…People can barely take it when they think it is coming from a priest, a prophet, or even God, why would they take it from you?”
“You think Too Highly of Yourself – I have met several writers over the years who are very intelligent, so much so that they are hamstrung by intellect…My book isn’t bad, you are just too stupid to understand it…”


  1. Anonymous1/04/2008

    I don't agree with the first one either. Writing something you don't need to be told or have explained to you doesn't necessarily mean you don't trust your audience. More often it means the writer is acknowledging that people are different, live different lives, and in the course of doing so may not have learned or experienced something that is familiar to the writer.
    The rest of these statements, however, sound right on the mark, and have me thinking I would get something out of reading this book too.

  2. know your audience is also know who validates your work. You can't expect everyone to "get it" and "like your stuff"

  3. TimmyTimTim1/08/2008

    Bird, what portion of the Walah blog is the basis for your comment
    "You can't expect everyone to get it and like your stuff"?

    I don't understand its context relative to Pat Walsh's section on "You do not know your audience".