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DoodleScribbles

Scribblings and scrawls of a hopeless romantic soul

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Book Talk: Bookish Pet Peeves and Fetishes

It’s that time of the year again… Happy Book Lover’s Day, everyone!

August 9 is a day for bibliophiles, bookworms and reading addicts around the world to celebrate their love of books. Although it is an unofficial holiday, people never run out of fun ways to commemorate this day — from visiting libraries and bookstores, re-reading old favorites, hosting parties and book clubs, showcasing awesome bookshelves and book hauls, recommending must-reads, and many more. Did the quarantine help you pursue your bookish delights?

The first two quarters of the year were productive for me. I’ve read more books than I had last year which is an incredible feat. But, halfway through June, work started piling up. It dragged on and to this day, I haven’t had a decent read.

So, for now, I’m sharing my personal pet peeves and fetishes when it comes to reading. Can any of you relate?

Pet Peeves

  1. Interruptions while reading
  2. Having no one to talk to after reading an awesome book
  3. Plot changes in movie adaptations
  4. Careless borrowers
  5. When a book got the movie poster as cover
  6. When someone judges a book without reading it

Festishes

  1. Having your dream bookshelves
  2. Hoarding!
  3. The scent of a book
  4. Paperback copies
  5. Preloved books
  6. Highlighting favorite quotes/intriguing lines
  7. A good book hug after a good read
  8. Making your own bookmarks
  9. When you have a complete copy of your favorite series
  10. Covering books

Writer’s Quote Wednesday – Are you a literary parasite?

Writer's Quote Wednesday

“For, substantially, all ideas are second-hand, consciously and unconsciously drawn from a million outside sources.”

— Mark Twain

Mark Twain wrote this in his letter to Helen Keller who was once charged and acquitted of plagiarism.

This quote came to mind when I immersed into Kirby Ferguson’s Everything is a Remix, a four-part documentary about the long history of creativity, originality and copyright. In this series, he gives a contemporary explanation of Twain’s statement. On how ideas are continuously told, retold, combined, alluded and altered in films, music, writings, artwork, technology everything.

I, myself, have been a literary parasite (my own choice of words). There were many times when ideas are scarce and I cannot write from scratch. So I took inspiration from writers of the old and new. I’ve tried writing a poem that molded with Emily Dickinson’s and a fiction that borrowed a fellow blogger’s character.

I used to feel doubtful and fearful of unoriginality but Twain’s words taught me how everything builds on what came before. That it is not a failure of our creative integrity when we take inspiration from others and turn it into something that is unique to our voice. I see this now as a symbiotic relationship instead of creative kleptomania. I believe we can all be humble literary parasites while paying attribution with high regards.

There is a thin line, of course, between brazen plagiarism and honest innovation. Like I said, we should transform it into something that is not a copycat of the original. Find a unique angle, look closer to a specific detail, and from that idea, create an entirely new concept that is yours.

Monday Musings: Let me count the ways

How do you rebuild yourself? Let me count the ways.

You rebuild yourself from the depths of pain and suffering and emptiness — making each a foothold to lift you up to a new height. Your tear-stained pillow, now dry, finds warmth at your bosom, and your hug is as tight as your resolve. You rebuild yourself from bricks of memories that you hold on to when life hits you hard on the face. From every day’s mundane simple things. A cat’s purr. A child’s smile. The smell of coffee. The sunrise. You rebuild yourself with care, as a woman putting cream on her face so gently. You rebuild yourself with care, as a man buying a pair of jeans after a long time. You rebuild yourself from doing things that you love. And from doing nothing at all.

It’s okay if you don’t have the right mind to read or write. If you don’t have the drive to sing or dance. You see, rebuilding yourself is not just about saying YES to life every time. It is saying YES to you first and foremost. So take things slow if you must. Rebuild yourself with patience and forgiveness. With smiles and tears and sighs.


Sharing this Monday musing on a Tuesday. Yesterday, I flung myself into the poetry of Elizabeth Barrett Browning. I specifically went back and forth to her sonnet, How Do I Love Thee? This one question and its five words kept repeating on my mind — not in a romantic way but in an introspective one. How do I love myself? Lately, I’ve been giving myself a hard time by weighing her down with unmanaged emotions, good and bad. Handling depressive episodes, anxiety and overthinking is becoming harder. And I know I’m not alone. We are all struggling here.

So, today I’m forgiving myself for thinking that trying is pointless. It’s a battle, a long and arduous one, but I’m reminding myself that it’s worth the fight. May this personal reminder inspire those who are feeling the same way as I have.

Wrap-Up | July 2020

Monthly Blog Update

Hey, everyone! Welcome to my first wrap-up post. I don’t normally do this kind of stuff but I’ve been trying a lot of things out these COVID days.

One way that “Dr. Google” suggested to keep my mental health in check is to focus on those that I can control. Trouble is, focus isn’t on my strongest traits. I have a natural tendency  to jump from one task to another and get back on them in a minute, day or never at all. So, I heeded a friend’s advice and started working on a structure/schedule — especially in writing.

A milestone for July is having successfully re-categorized my blog posts. 🎉  Since I still find it hard to write, I focused on improving my blog identity. It’s still a work in progress but we’ll get there. As for the rest…

Things I’ve written…

I’ve written two poems inspired by two opposing feelings. The first one was taken out of a late night conversation I had with James and the other was kind of a rant.

My mishmash of random things, on the other hand, reflected the roller-coaster of emotions I’ve had this month.

Books I’ve read…

Or still reading. Unfortunately, life did not allow me to finish even a single book this month. I have only got past page 63 of Ernest Hemingway’s For Whom the Bell Tolls and reality sucked me back to its chaotic void again. With reduced workforce, to-dos and to-writes are piling up. When will this end? 😟

Places I’ve been…

Funny that I am including this in my recap. Aside from my everyday WFH  (Walk From Home) route to the office, I haven’t been anywhere. Cebu City has just transitioned to general community quarantine (GCQ) but I doubt if we’d have the opportunity to see the mountains soon. My friends and I just canceled a major climb in Luzon and would most probably be canceling another one in Mindanao come November. Sigh.

Posts I loved…

I’ve been mostly out of blogosphere these days but I still managed to read some remarkable posts in my feed. Go check these links out.

Looking back, it’s been productive month despite life’s mess. As July finally bid its goodbye, here’s to hoping for better days. May our August be filled with happiness and peace. 🌻

I wandered lonely as a Cloud by William Wordsworth

Featured poems and spoken word poetry

I wandered lonely as a Cloud
   That floats on high o’er Vales and Hills,
When all at once I saw a crowd,
   A host of golden Daffodils;
Beside the Lake, beneath the trees,
Fluttering and dancing in the breeze.

Continuous as the stars that shine
   And twinkle on the Milky Way,
They stretched in never-ending line
   Along the margin of a bay:
Ten thousand saw I at a glance,
Tossing their heads in sprightly dance.

The waves beside them danced, but they
   Out-did the sparkling waves in glee:—
A Poet could not but be gay
   In such a jocund company:
I gazed—and gazed—but little thought
What wealth the shew to me had brought:

For oft when on my couch I lie
   In vacant or in pensive mood,
They flash upon that inward eye
   Which is the bliss of solitude,
And then my heart with pleasure fills,
And dances with the Daffodils.


Sharing another personal favorite from William Wordsworth. May this piece inspire our wandering and wondering souls. ❤

Writer’s Quote Wednesday – A plea

Featured quote for Writer's Quote Wednesday

“It’s easy to tell the toiler
How best he can carry his pack
But no one can rate a burden’s weight
Until it has been on his back”

Ella Wheeler Wilcox

Sharing this quote from Ella Wheeler Wilcox’s poem titled PREACHING VS. PRACTICE.

I know it’s scary and tiresome to live in these troubled times. We all have suffered physically, mentally, emotionally, spiritually and financially. We all have our personal burdens and, at times, we tend to carry those that are not ours.

I hope we find it in our hearts to help each other. Please be kind and sensitive to each other’s pains. 😦

Monday Musings: Something beautiful and cruel

The next time you question the existence of love, look into an old photograph. See how love is written from that fading black and white. Travel back in time when love was patient and slow. When you don’t need technology to keep up real time. Listen to an old song. Notice the way your eyes smile or how your heart beats with the music. A once inaudible sound now carries snippets of laughter and tears.

Do you still not see?

Love may have left the front door shut but some fragments will forever remain. Memories. These are our only evidence that something beautiful and cruel like love exist.


I am 99.9% done with re-categorizing my old posts and as I was checking my unpublished tab, I realize that there are still too many scattered thoughts that need my attention.

This one is from 2018 that I wrote for A to Z challenge. For some reason, I dropped the idea (hehe). I’m sharing it now since I have two girlfriends who currently might relate.

Pakigbisog by James Glendon

Featured poems and spoken word poetry

Gikapoy naka.
ayaw’g hunahunaa nga
kaya ra nimo tanang problema.
kay
di ka kusgan sa tanang panahon
ug sayop sila sa ilang giingong
dili ka masulub-on
kay ang tinuod
nag-inusara ra ka.
Ayaw isipa nga
kanimo adunay mutabang
kay
hakug  ang kalibutan.
Dili tinuod na
kini pagsulay lang
tuho-i na
magpabalin ang problema sa hangtud.
Undang na sa pagtoo nga
may igo kang katakos
hinumdumi nga
Ang kalampusan lisud makab-ot
sayop ang ideya nga
layo ka’g maabtan
kay ang tinuod
dinha ra ka kutob.
Hunong na sa pagtoo nga         
Makigbisog ka.

P.S. Now read the lines from the bottom to the top.


So, I’ve decided to continue this project of sharing poetry — written and spoken — that I believe deserve to be read, heard and felt. May this collection quench our thirst for inspiration and awaken our sleeping muse.

This piece is written by James Glendon, a Cebuano wanderer and wonderer who has a penchant for reverse poetry. The poem addresses anxiety and depression which are prevalent in today’s society. If only I could translate it to any language without jeopardizing its meaning and depth. Sigh.


Also, check out Home by Warsan Shire and The Prisoner of Chillon by Lord Byron for previous featured pieces. 😀

Blog Update: Taming Cats and Categories

Blog updates and work in prgress

Yesterday a black cat ignored me — again. It’s same stray who always lounge by the TGU bench in IT Park during afternoons. I feel envious to the point of sinful watching it laze around, enjoying the silence and cool wind, when we humans are at the end of time’s bending sickle.

If only we could have moments of carelessness too…

For the nth time, I tried to pet her. But she would not be tamed. So I turned to my phone, looked up my blog to see when was the last time I wrote about cats. Then, it dawned on me: I need to fix my site.

When I first started blogging, I didn’t want to be too technical. Never cared much about pages, categories, tags, plugins and whatnots. Even my site identity is slightly sloppy. All I care about was — and still is — the content. Blogging is more like virtual journal for me but as time passed, a lot of things happened. I started joining prompts to hone my writing. I kept adding new stuff to Poetry/Flash Fiction/Musings without caring that some posts might not fit under these three categories.

Which brings me to this project: re-categorizing my posts. Some of you might notice that I’ve added new pages and nested tabs on this site. I basically just added specific categories for poetry and writings for easy navigation, and dumped all posts with unused categories under Mishmash of Random Things. LOL!

As for the really new stuff, I’ve decided to share my bookish thoughts through book reviews and book talks — though I hope laziness won’t get in the way in the future. I’ve also added a main tab for my travels and resurrected (haha) Mouth+Piece where I share my favorite written and spoken poems from around the globe.

Overall, it’s still a work in progress. Now, back to tinkering! Have a great day 🙂

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