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Glitter in the Blood: A Poet's Manifesto for Better, Braver Writing Paperback – September 15, 2012


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 222 pages
  • Publisher: Write Bloody Publishing (September 15, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1938912012
  • ISBN-13: 978-1938912016
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.2 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #501,910 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Mindy Nettifee was born in Iowa but spent her formative years in Southern California. She is a graduate of Chapman University and the director of the nonprofit poetry organization Write Now Poetry Society, which she co-founded with actress Amber Tambyln. She has taught poetry workshops at community centers, schools and universities across the country for 15 years, and has curated poetry events for the Smithsonian, the Getty Center, GirlFest, the Los Angeles County Arts Commission and more.

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.

INTRODUCTION It's hard to say exactly when I fell in love with poetry. George Michael was still straight. My mom drove something with rust-colored interiors. So, let's not do the math. Let's just say with certainty I was young, and that besides my youth, there wasn't anything striking or cinematic about it. I didn't live in the storm shelter of a public library, or wear peasant skirts, or sit in trees memorizing Keats. I wasn't a beautiful orphan. My parents weren't ex-patriot literary scholars smoking Gitanes in the kitchen. I did have an old paperback Norton Anthology of Poetry that I stole from a Sunday School. The one with the yolk yellow cover and vaguely Greco-Roman art. The pages smelled like basement, or tornado, and were not uniformly loved. Chaucer was crisp as brand new bibles; Berryman was dog-eared and smudged. I liked how heavy it was. I liked the difficult words. I liked the even more difficult syntax that made reading aloud like chewing leather. Mostly, I liked the way none of it made sense to me. It made the book feel stolen in more than one way. It was like a chronicle of ancient mysterious secrets had fallen in to my possession, and it was all written in impossible code. Learning to understand it, I knew, meant learning a foreign language. Maybe several. There were things in this book that I was not supposed to know - why else would it be written so strangely? Surely, I thought, if I studied it long enough, everything there was to know about life would be revealed to me. It is not hard to say when I fell out of love with poetry - it was early Spring of 2005. I was on the verge of a nervous breakdown, but I didn't know it. An epic, space-black despair was swallowing me, and the one thing that had always added so much juice and church to my life now felt stiff and lifeless. Poetry had never been a career goal. I was pretty sure poetry careers were just legends anyway. Like narwhals. Or the gold standard. But poetry had been everything else to me. I had gone regularly to open mics and poetry readings since I was just shy of 13, and at these unruly caffeinated gatherings I found people who are, to this day, the most eccentric and emotionally unstable people I've ever met. I worshipped them. They weren't like other people. They were smart and free and weird, and they weren't always nice, or good, but they were urgent and alive. It inspired me.

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5 stars
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This book is a conversation.
playerpiano
Her suggestions for tapping into the things in your life that carry the most emotional charge, then writing about those, really worked for me.
allegrophobic
I teach a Creative Writing class and had this been published sooner, I would have made it required reading for my students.
S. Hunter

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Ronnie K. Stephens on September 27, 2012
Format: Paperback
Holy bowl of awesome sauce, this book is incredible!

I've read countless books on poetic form and theory in various undergraduate and graduate writing workshops. I did a six-week retreat in Ireland with some of the best writers across two continents. I've picked the brains of nearly every professional writer I've ever met. The simple truth is that this is the best book on writing poetry in print. Mindy doesn't just unpack the writing process, she sets the curtain on fire and shatters the looking glass; she tears down the fourth wall.

Glitter in the Blood is not a one-dimensional manifesto of one woman's journey into the poetic. It's an unbridled and vulnerable dialogue with the reader. Mindy walks the reader through every poem, from prompt to brainstorming to first draft to revision. She invites you into the thought process and, at times, leaves an actual map of her cognitive leaps for you to follow. I came away with a better understanding of writing, but also a better understanding of myself. This is more than a book on writing - you'll learn fascinating tidbits about feminism, coming of age in a patriarchal society, the economy, and plenty more.

Not convinced? Consider this: I'm a public school teacher at one of the poorest schools in our state, and I'm already taking the steps to buy a class set with my own money just to get this book into my students' hands.

Don't just get better at poems. Get better at life. Get this book.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By playerpiano on November 24, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
THIS BOOK. Oh my goodness gracious. This book has re-wired by stubborn mind. Before this book my brain was a constant traffic jam of thoughts, of ideas for poems, of half-finished stanzas. After reading this book, I feel like my brain knows how to think about poems like they've already been edited. (The first edit, anyway.) This book is NOT just a book on how to write poems. It's a book about how to cope with being alive, with everything that entails. This book tells you it's okay to feel the feelings you feel, to push the boundaries of poetry, reality, magic, and your idea of poetry. I would recommend this book to anyone who writes poetry, or who WANTS to. This book is a conversation. You can hear Mindy in every line, talking you through the unimaginably hard work of making your own art.

The first day I had this book I read the first 20 pages or so and wrote a poem immediately afterward. I'm not saying you'll do that, but I'm saying it's possible. I hadn't written a full, finished poem in moooonths and then BAM(!) there it was. Magic.

This book gives you permission to be whole-heartedly yourself. Even if we know we shouldn't, we're all looking for permission. This is it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By allegrophobic on December 18, 2012
Format: Paperback
I bought this book after seeing Mindy Nettifee's YouTube video 'For Young Women Who Don't Consider Themselves Feminists': [...]

Mindy writes in such a personal, immediate way that I found myself thinking, 'I can do that!'

Her suggestions for tapping into the things in your life that carry the most emotional charge, then writing about those, really worked for me. I've done many writing courses but this was the first time I got down to tin tacks about what I wanted to write, without the self-conscious metaphors and prevarication. I wrote things I didn't intend to write - the words that came out surprised me. They nailed the emotion. They didn't come from a logical orderly place. I didn't feel in control of them. It was a revelation.

This is a truly terrific book for any creative endeavours where you want to come out from behind yourself. Get your glitter on.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Chryslerpoet on November 4, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Mindy Nettifee has delivered a solid and frequently inspired volume of work that should be on the book shelf of every poet. Filled with great stories, anecdotes, examples, and exercises and prompts, Nettifee covers much of the same ground found in the works of Natalie Goldberg, but with more detail and depth. Recommended.
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