Doren Damico

Writer’s Word of Advice

I Am a Terrible Blogger

I have way too much on my list and don’t keep up my blog. Nor do I write articles for you so much as follow my muse and write articles for me. Okay, that’s not actually exackitally true–but I haven’t been blogging enough, setting up my blog so it’s optimized for the internet–you know, the good business of blogging–and all I get in my comments box is SPAM! 

It’s on my list to improve my blogging habits, truly, just not at the top most days.

I do, however, believe I am perfectly competent to give…

 A Writer’s Word of Advice.

Writer’s Word of Advice: Write Every Day!

So what am I up to if I call myself a writer and a terrible blogger? Well, I write every day! I also read every day! Just today since I got up I’ve done the following: Revised a report for a client. Written a compelling proposal for a 5-week job this summer. Sent both off. Bam! Now I’m, uh, getting a quick blog post up…

Yesterday, I worked on my new poetry collection for 3 hours. It is a heart wrenching and somewhat experimental collection drawn from journals and correspondence for over 20 years, and is themed around writing letters. I’m incredibly hyped about this collection!!!! It will be my second book of poetry and I plan to get traditionally published. I’m also going to submit it to some competitions.

Now, listen carefully because this is really really important: I’m not just writing my poetry book. I’m reading a lot about poetic forms, reading new poets and reading my old writing. This reflective and critical work is helping me take my new poetry (and even some of my old poetry) to amazing new poetic heights.

Writer’s Word of Advice: Have Systems of Writing Accountability!

Submission deadlines, daily word counts, a writing schedule, editors, and writing buddies are all great ways to keep yourself writing. It’s important to not only have measurable and achievable goals, but to have systems for assessing how you are progressing toward these goals. I’m very driven, but I believe that having accountability friends is a great way to be successful.

Yesterday, I finally met with my new friend, Wren. It was great! We took an invigorating walk, talked about our big writing projects, shared some writing samples and gave impressions/feedback. We discussed how our writing group will help us meet our expectations and planned continued meetings to meet our writing goals. I’ve been hoping for a friend like this for a long time. I haven’t had a ton of happy writing group experiences previously–joined and promptly left a couple groups because I felt it was a waste of my time. But I’ve finally met the perfect writing friend, which happened when I totally wasn’t expecting it!

How did that happen? I have an active writing life.

Writer’s Word of Advice: Make Writing A Priority in Your Life!

So, I’m not blogging much, but I’m writing in many areas of my life. This includes a regular poetry habit. I am part of online poetry groups, I attend poetry and spoken word events, and I submit to anthologies on a quarterly basis. I met my new writing friend at a reading in Pasadena for this amazing anthology: Nuclear Impact: Broken Atoms in Our Hands, edited by Teresa Mei Chuc. This collection features work by 163 poets from all over the world! Please check it out. All the profits go to support women transforming their lives from surviving domestic abuse to thriving.

I spent 10 weeks applying to MFA programs in Creative Writing. I completed applications to three programs, one several weeks late. I got in to two programs (Antioch low residency and Chapman!). Sadly, but not unexpectedly, I didn’t get into the one that was a late application (UCRiverside). In the process, I learned a lot about writing statements of purpose and letters about myself. I developed my first writer’s resume and completed a comprehensive CV. After all that work–and it was a lot of work–I decided not to attend the programs due to money!!!  But I intend to reapply next year to the programs I really want to get into, apply ON TIME, and apply for fellowships and scholarships along the way.

I just completed a 12 week business course and began (20 pages) of a business plan for a great business idea. I also created a focus group for some early business model research and did some interesting creating related to that! To keep in line with this new business idea where I facilitate workshops with larger groups of people, I wrote two proposals for workshops and shopped them to potential clients. I did research on places to do this work.

I just joined a grant writing committee for the non-profit, Tía Chuchas Centro Cultural, and I’ve been doing more writing on The Empathy Training Manual in collaboration with Delsy Sandoval of The Empathy Training Project.

While working 5 days a week (about 25 hours a week): I started a new short story exploring a writer’s surreal world that I hope to submit to some fiction contests. I wrote several great poems related to the womyn’s movement, in particular this: Welcome to Womynkind, which is getting really great reviews on the Open Mic circuit (If you haven’t yet checked it out, please do). I host and promote for an Open Mic (twice monthly), continue poetry performances, am creating and marketing new materials for my coaching business, made a great short film for my youtube channel and have been taking two courses in art. One is a survey of World Art where I write critical observations and reflections on art. The other is an advanced design class.

I’m super excited about my current application of design principles to collaging, especially some poetry/collage pieces I’m creating from When You Can’t Scream... materials. I’m getting ready to go to New York and I am hand making a couple chapbooks for independent bookstores.

All in all…

Writer’s Word of Advice: Write because you love it.

It’s the writer’s life for me–a bumble bee beautiful mixture of smelling the flowers, workin’ workin’ workin’ to make the honey sweet, and living and dying by the sting of readers, no readers, rejections and collections. I love it!

New Glasses


Doren Damico is a writer of many genres, a lyricist and poet with a passion for the art of being human.  For more writing and art, subscribe at:

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Doren Damico

Doren is a salsa dancing philosopher poet and fan of science fiction.

10 CommentsLeave a comment

    • Hey Michael Ray!
      I followed your advice and organized a project folder in my online Meistertask for Writing Submissions. Each week I seek out submissions and park those that seem like potential prospects. Then I make a writing plan related to attempting to meet submission deadlines. Unfortunately, I haven’t had a lot of time to write lately… But CONGRATULATIONS are in order because in 2 out of my 3 latest submissions, I was ACCEPTED! I’m also able to use this project page to monitor and reflect on submissions.
      Thanks my friend!

  • Doren, I’m overwhelmed by your drive and productivity! As far as I’m concerned, a Blog is an unnecessary exercise when you are already doing so much “legitimate” writing every day! Don’t concern yourself about irregular entries here. Actually, saving up all your writing news makes for a very impressive read for us! Keep your priorities, as you’ve been doing. <3

  • These are good advice. thanks for sharing. I’ll post to my Facebook and hopefully they will be useful for some of my other writing friends

    • A few years ago I went with my boyfriend on a late night emergency plumbing job. It was date night and he was on call. We entered the house together and while he fixed the water heater I talked with the man of the house who was obviously a writer. We left with a bottle of wine and chocolate from the grateful couple, and a writer’s handbook for me. Best part of that night: the writer’s advice, which is about what I’ve shared here. Write every day keep the plumber away. Wait, no. Um… Arrr! The writer’s life for me and a bottle of rum! Eek. I can’t quite remember. Maybe it was So you want to be a writer… ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha… here’s some wine and chocolate for the witless gal. She’s gonna need it!

  • In this world there is magic leaking into our awareness, sometimes its a melody, sometimes pain, but as we all know in the beginning it was the word. Words are the utterance of thought, the writing on the wall and the provence of us all.

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