Sunday, February 7, 2016

NO KNACK poem #17 From Spark to Bursting Flame

No Knack
My Toastmasters speech
a dry run.
Tense, but eager
Using clear, concise tones.

Each word highlighting a point
on how the writing process
from idea sparked,
to bursting flame,
generating a complete and published work. 

Then I swap the breezy artist’s cap
for one of entrepreneur –
and feel the constant drag
like wading through
a cooled pahoahoa lava flow, or
a river of mud.


I’ve stood on cooling lava flows when they were still quite warm to the touch. On the Big Island of Hawai‘i, Kilauea is known as the friendly volcano. It has been gently erupting since 1982. 

Walking on the surface of what once was over a thousand degrees of liquid fire, ancient material that flowed up from the center of the earth, is a bit eerie. Pahoahoa lava is smooth, rope-like in appearance. A’a flows are chunky, like oversized stucco. 

Once cooled, lava is rock hard. There is no “wading through” rock. That is my first impression of marketing, an impossible task required to sell a book. 

With my first novel, I had a degree of success. But after writing a second and third book, with research and editing, the publishing process seemed to overwhelm me. Marketing fell to the wayside while I returned to the fun part of being an author: writing. 

Easing back into the marketing arena again, I plan to replace the sense of constant drag with rhythmic rollercoaster action. With hard work, and luck, I look forward to building momentum. My goal is to continue moving forward, slowing at curves only long enough to give myself a breather before heading into the next run. 

If I can turn “no-knack” into no-lack of interested readers, even cooling lava flows won’t detour me from stepping into the overheated arena of marketing.


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