Singing the “Wha cain’t I jes quit” blues

Hi everyone,

Yesterday I completed the revisions on my desert story. But not really. I worked through it from first page to last over a week or so making some fundamental changes, but I got better at it as I went. Which means I need to start again at the beginning to make sure my changes are even throughout. When I reread the first chapter, it still wasn’t doing what I wanted so today I’ll work on a new first chapter. One of these days I’ll have to call it done and abandon further efforts, but I can’t quit yet.


10 comments on “Singing the “Wha cain’t I jes quit” blues

  1. How delightfully frustrating for you…to get your groove for the story when you thought you’d already had it. Been there, done that too. Perhaps there is a sequal in there.
    Well, do try to make it outside sometime on this lovely spring day and get your dose of vitamin D and fresh, allergen-laden air!

    • Ah yes, Janine! That’s what I should do — carry my notepad outside and sneeze away the day in the good company of Mother Goose and spring hatchings of too many small flying things to count.

  2. Just Quit Blues

    Sitting at the table,
    rapping with my verbs,
    thinking how I need to find
    a bunch of better words.
    Failing at my gerunds,
    there’s another clause,
    wondering when this book ends
    or just become a pause.. . .

    It’s in the news,
    the daily news;
    the just-can’t-quit
    the comma doesn’t fit,
    the sentence has no wit
    book blues.

    Sitting at the library
    googling some facts,
    reading lots of ancient history
    and archaic tracts.
    Hoping for a break-through,
    God, I need a plot.
    Sometimes I’m a writer
    and then other times–I’m not.

    I didn’t choose,
    am so confused.
    The just-can’t-quit,
    It needs a good crit,
    where is my grit,
    I am what I writ,
    my wrists I will slit,
    I’m just going to quit
    book blues.

    Oh yeah. . . .

    ©2017 JaneYolen all rights reserved

    • Jane, what great fun! Someone needs to set this to music and perform it at the next SCBWI conference or elsewhere. I have a serious case of Lovin’ Me a Jane Yolen rap. XO

  3. Jane Yolen and the Three Ravens. We have only performed once all together. They perform as The Three Ravens, got together because of me and do a lot of the songs I have written the lyrics for. We are having a ball. I no longer sing because of boggy voice box (technical term!) though once upon a time I was a performer. But they are all friends
    of mine and professional musicians and I have written songs with each of them: Donna Hebert, Lui Collins, Max Cohen. Occasionally I sit in on a gig and read a poem or two to the enthusiastic audiences. Or at least no one boos or throws rotten tomatoes.

    • What a hoot. I bet you love every minute of it and of course your audience does too. I love the name. I’ve never intentionally written a lyric but one of our group (an associate provost at Missouri State U) was formerly a singer-composer-performer in Nashville so he has arranged a dozen of my poems into pieces we can play. We’ve appeared maybe eight times over the past several years. Made a CD once, one for each of us, and each of us lost his.

  4. Your post and poems got me going this morning, and got me singing the theme song to the TV show, Fraser.

    Here’s my version for you, David!

    Oh baby I need some inspiration,
    Some magic,
    A solid lead.

    And then I need time to put to paper,
    The words I so
    Dearly need.

    Wish there was something to do but sit staring and praying for words…

    They’ll happen soon.

    • Ha ha! I like your version, Susan. Now I’m inspired and all fired up! And things really are going along well so far this morning. I’m off to the kitchen to start a second pot. Yeehaw!

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