Writerly Inspirations

I haven’t had much time this week to concentrate on writing. However, I’ve found—at least for myself—that the writing spirit doesn’t care if you’ve got the time or not. It likes to strike when it pleases. There I was, minding my own business, watching the most recent episode of NCIS when it decided to lunge at me.

One of the characters watches a funeral come to an end a few steps away. Memories of a previously deceased wife and a broken engagement no doubt filled his mind. His voice, full ofremorse, says “I was trying to do the right thing for her, but she still ended up here…”

All I could think was “Damned if you do, damned if you don’t” with the addition of “so you may as well do.” And just like that a new character popped into my head. Within minutes I had his whole backstory planned out. His mannerisms, his quirks. Likes and dislikes. I even had a scene with him saying the above. I don’t know where I’ll put him. I don’t even know if he’ll be used beyond writing practice.

But that’s a concern for another day. For now, I’m just marveling at the persistence of the writing spirit and awed by what it finds inspirational.

-Amber

Weekly Round Up

New on the borrowed solace blog: the weekly round up, a recapitulation of what is inspiring us, what the borrowed solace community has been up to, and what you can look for next from the journal.

This week has been a bit of a strange one here in Colorado.  We had near record breaking high temperatures to start of the week, a blizzard to see us through hump day, and more snow to come for the weekend.  Spring has sprung! Despite all of the chaos mother nature seems to be experiencing in this transitional time, we have been thriving (or trying to, at least).  There are some exciting new ways that borrowed solace will be branching out in the coming weeks, so keep your eyes open for more news from us!  In the meantime, here is what has been inspiring our creativity this week, we hope it might inspire you too!

I am currently getting readying for a writer’s conference, and getting some stories put together for critiques and reviews. One piece in particular, I have been working on since my last year of college two years ago. This piece has sort of haunted me in a way so that I can’t get it quite right; even though I have completed the 100th draft, though I feel a small step towards completion every time a draft is done. Slaying the words, adding new words–revision is definitely the hardest part of writing for me!

Nicole M.

As the daughter of a musician, music has always been a big part of my life.  My parents met because of music, so it’s no wonder I am consistently inspired by new sounds and lyrics.  As a poet (and poetry editor), music is a big part of my writing, too. Songs are poetry to music, after all, and I like to think that a beautifully written song is every bit as dazzling as the perfect marriage of words to the page.

This week, I have discovered a new duo that I have been listening to nonstop, Ward Thomas.  This duo is a sister (twins!) country group from England, and I stumbled on their music a while ago and didn’t listed for whatever reason, then somehow came back to them again this week.  I’ve basically been listening to both their albums (there’s a third that isn’t available to me in the US unfortunately) for the past several days, and while their use of instrumentation and their luscious harmonies are what got me at first, I found myself sitting in my living room listening to their voices as I read along to the lyrics last night and feeling so enraptured by what the songs were saying.

Some of my favorites are “No Filter” which has a fantastic pre-chorus: “I reposition my hands, my hair, my cheek so you might listen to me.  I’ve been conditioned to win a piece of the war you started.” “Little Girl Sorrow” which personifies feelings with the best literary masters, and “This Too Shall Pass” which is so simplistic it makes me want to cry (listen to this one if you are in your twenties and struggling with making sense of your life).

Music always inspires me, and this week it’s been Ward Thomas.  Give them a listen — I don’t think you’ll regret it.

Addey

Issue 2.2: Corruption

Corruption is our fall theme for the upcoming journal; and as we all know, it is about complexity. Corruption can be defined many ways: To participate in a bribe or action that is morally wrong; something that can turn a world upside down; an abuse of power; and dishonesty of those in control of that power, leaving questions of who we should trust to uphold integrity and transparency.

But corruption goes beyond even these things, it is a process by which a simple word or well-known expression is changed from its original use and is abused or manipulated into something that it’s not. Corruption is power that rots relationships, it is the gaps between the haves and have-nots, the never ending struggle for happiness, to belong, to gain what you want with an underhanded action.

Stories like the classical Macbeth show the reader a nobleman who kills for power to gain the throne, who lies to keep his wits about him.  Or another classic, Animal Farm, by George Orwell, shows how power can persuade a single person to abandon their ethics. Everything human can become undone.

Then there is Batman in Gotham, a compassionate yet calculating man set out to unravel the corruption of city officials and police who are ruled by mobs and gangsters.  They all serve a corrupted purpose instead of the greater good, while this superhero strives to follow in his parents footsteps, to rid criminality from the hearts of normally good-hearted people.

For issue 2.2, each editor is looking for this:

Art: I want to see a story in a photo, what has corrupted nature, the world, and people. I want to see who in this world, or what in this world, was made a villain by surroundings, culture, and society.

Poetry: As always, I’m looking for contradictions.  For the clumsy poems that say biting things about conniving people; for slimy topics explained with buttery soft language; for tall tales about ordinary people caught in the throws of corruption.

Nonfiction: In real lives, every day, we are forced with choices to make. Some of these situations put us in difficult positions, especially when we do what we must. I want to see how corruption influences the lives of the everyday person and am excited to see the outcome of what happens when people are put in those positions.

Fiction: Corruption depends on the world, the rules and moralities of its people, and how the conflict is solved. With this, and the general term of corruption, I want to bask in each piece—and let its corruption find me.

Three Days!

Or two and a half at this point, but who’s counting (okay, we are!) borrowed solace issue 2.1 will be coming out this Friday.

We are in the midst of some gorgeous sunny weather here in Colorado but by the time the journal comes out on the 29th, the weather is supposed to take a wintry turn. We hope that in the midst of potentially dreary whether our journal will be a source of sunshine in your day. That idea is what borrowed solace is all about. As the name implies, we intend for the journal to be a moment out of your day (or week, or year, or whatever method of tracking time you personally employ) where you can escape into a landscape of serenity and peace.

For this coming spring edition, we hope that peaceful moment is in the spring grass of your mind’s eye, letting the sunshine soak into your face and feeling the sweet spring breeze as it brushes against bare skin.

So in the midst of a blizzard, or a downpour, or even if the days where you are reflect the current season perfectly, we are excited for you to welcome spring into your heart with borrowed solace 2.1.

It’s Right Around the Corner!

Release day is coming up soon – in fact, it’s right around the corner. We are so excited for you to see the final version of borrowed solace 2.1! It’s shaping up to be a breathtaking issue, complete with moments that will make you gasp and turns of phrase that will make you sing.

Keep an eye out for an update on just when you can expect to see issue 2.1 grace our website later this week. We can’t wait for you to see it!

An Update on Spring borrowed solace

The editors have been hard at work over the last couple of months on borrowed solace 2.1! We have been dreaming of spring in the midst of blizzards and polar vortexes, and creating a journal full of amiable sun rays and balmy breezes.

The journey to get here has been quite a trek, but it has been a rewarding one. The spring journal holds a special place in all of our hearts because it’s always about new beginnings – it’s the first journal of the year and one that reeks of promise.

One of the reasons that I am so enthused about the spring journal is that it is our un-themed edition. While our themed editions are always enticing to put together, the un-themed journals are secretly my favorite (I guess it’s not a secret anymore!)

The thing I love about writing is that it has no bounds – writing can be used as a fabulous tool, but unlike a literal tool, it has many purposes. The un-themed journals take full advantage of the boundlessness of the written word. It truly allows for experimentation and the beauty that comes from the unexpected.

So, as you, dear reader, eagerly anticipate spring borrowed solace, prepare yourself to be surprised, delighted, and otherwise galvanized. For writing, and spring borrowed solace, are about just those things!

In the Midst of the Holiday Season…

Don’t forget to submit to borrowed solace!  We know it’s a busy time of year, but it’s also a time for reflection on the things that one appreciates in life and the things that are important.  borrowed solace is certainly important to us, and so are you!  We are so thankful for your support so far – 2018 has been a wonderful year for our little corner of the literary journal world!

We hope you take some time to reflect and write this season, and please, don’t forget to submit your work to us.  We can’t wait to see what you write!