Tag Archives: #writingprocess

A note on notes

Tbh I’d like to note that I have gravely underestimated the value of notes. You’d think someone who calls their blog songs for now would know to focus on notes because music. But no. Because I’m such an intuitive writer (as if that wasn’t obvious haha), I kind of try not to structure my writing too much, so I’ve tended to think I don’t need to jot down ideas, remember or record fragments.

Lately, I have become a rather insatiable note-taker & find that of all the technical things about creating, notes are the most intuitive. It’s not limiting, like some writing structure stuff, because it’s your own ideas, waiting for you, kinda organized, but also open ended; so it’s more of a start than anything else, even if it’s like one word.

& beginning can be the most difficult thing. Notes are magical, because you’ve already started without the pressure, maybe on something like a colourful notepad, whether on paper or digitally.

Notes, dear blogosphere, I know you know. Best thing.

© Niliema Karkhanis

📚📗Going through old work & making decisions is a thing 📘📔📓

Going through my old work, I realize how much about making poetry is deciding what is something that people maybe need to read & setting the rest aside.

Sometimes I give myself permission to write out something I’m thinking or feeling without focusing too much on the product. It’s amazing to me that I can tell the difference at all.

I guess when you start editing & are like no one needs to see that like really haha, that’s how you know.


© Niliema Karkhanis

Notes on writing process 3: The value of poetry

We learn that writing has to be informative or narrative, even poetry. I love narrative poetry. I think breaking with reality can also be very appealing. It builds creative & abstract thinking. It creates an opportunity to take in life in different, unexpected ways, even mundane or painful things. It’s emotional & we don’t always get the opportunity to express our emotions by reaching into them like you can working with poetics.

& when I say poetry, there are so many different kinds; this is a marvelous thing, to be celebrated. It’s such a massive field.

Poetry in its myriad forms is both generative & transformative. These are qualities which make it interesting & full of possibility. I still think that due to the way which poetry exists in cultures, it is a foundational form of text & cultural production. It is one of those things which is simultaneously undervalued & deliciously pervasive. One word on that: music.

That’s also a tension which creating poetic writing exists within. In another world, perhaps poetry would be viewed in the same capacity as any valued creation. Here & now though, such tension is in the mix. While I reject the devaluation, I also see a purpose in taking it on & working with it in my pieces.

Poetry is about interpreting & recharging information & experiences so the place of the poet in culture is going to be a part of that.

Read notes on writing process 1 & 2 at the following links:



© Niliema Karkhanis

💜 Notes on writing process 2: play 💜

Photo by

Happiness Maker  from Pexels

Text by nrk


Poetry is a lot about word play. That’s why what I discussed in my earlier post: Notes on writing process 1 (you can link to it here (https://niliema.wordpress.com/2021/02/19/notes-on-writing-process-1/) is so important. If you let yourself get even that sliver of an idea out of you, wherever you put your words, you are likely […]

💜 Notes on writing process 2: play 💜

Notes on Writing Process 3 coming soon 💜

© Niliema Karkhanis

💜 Notes on writing process 2: play 💜

Photo by 

Happiness Maker 

from Pexels

Text by nrk


Poetry is a lot about word play. That’s why what I discussed in my earlier post: Notes on writing process 1 is so important. If you let yourself get even that sliver of an idea out of you, wherever you put your words, you are likely beginning to get […]

Notes on writing process 2: play

© Niliema Karkhanis

Notes on writing process 2: play

Photo by Happiness Maker from Pexels
Text by nrk


Poetry is a lot about word play. That’s why what I discussed in my earlier post: Notes on writing process 1 is so important. If you let yourself get even that sliver of an idea out of you, wherever you put your words, you are likely beginning to get deeper into a poetic concept, feeling, or idea you are ready to really work with.

However you work, whether it’s hand-writing, typing on a computer &/or working on a phone, part of the writing process is to really feel intuitive & playful with your chosen writing medium: they all have their benefits. They are all tools & practices which contribute to the way we can play with words.

For example, I use the wp block editor on my phone to structure rhythm & rhyme in especially my shorter rhyming poetry, as well as to give myself space to get concepts & words down concisely, then re-order them for flow.

I definitely play differently with words when I write in a notebook, & even still differently when I work in a sketchbook. On paper, I generally incorporate drawings & I can keep my edits in very visual playful ways, where I can revisit my writing process. It’s pretty to look at cursive as well.

I am very inspired by the shapes of words & letters as well as the linguistic elements of writing. Working between pen & paper, print & different forms of technology is a gift we have in this era. It gives us such broad opportunity to understand how our art works in different formats; & how our writerly process can build using innovative methods & alternating tools analogue & digital facets & tools.

Whatever methods you are using, it’s important to really play around with what the medium has to offer as well as how you interact with it.

Of course your individual style & writing needs will be informed by tools, & also very much independent of them.

We often judge ourselves when we are being creative, & that’s going to happen. Of course, do please try & be gentle with you…easier said than done, I know. I encourage you, rather than judging yourself or trying to be less judgemental, to try observation of your writing methods & patterns. It’s so much more important.

An observation I’ve made on my own writing is that, almost unequivocally; when I’m playing with words & connecting them to a poetic observation or experience, I try to work with a dichotomy of combining every day writing & speech with unexpected usages which sometimes surprise even me. I try to reach as far away from the every day to get to these juxtapositions.

This is a structuring principal I use for my free verse & prose poetry, which I consider to be my main. I like to break dichotomies. It’s a method I have found very enjoyable & I feel it brings out my voice.

There are a plethora of other word play techniques which offer different & interesting momentum for poetic stories. Combining them is also infinitely fascinating.

In addition to play & observation of patterns, poetry is about observing poetic relationships in art & life; including, but not limited to, other forms which use words such as music or movies. This isn’t just about inspiration, it’s about relational elements in story-telling. This is where we get into discussions of meaning, wordplay & poetics. That’s a whole other post, dear blogosphere. Thanks for being here for this one. 💜

© Niliema Karkhanis

Note: I have been focusing on poetry writing because poetic writing methods are indispensable skills for literally all forms of writing & creative work. It’s fun too, & can help to bring interst & joy into all that you do. 💜

Notes on writing process 1

Photo credit: Pexels

I think the most important thing to do with poetry is to write what comes to you intuitively & just get it down. Let yourself really go with it if you can. Keep notes, prompts, titles which come to mind, or have them in the background of your write in some way &/or go with what moves you in the moment.

Sometimes I draw before I write. I use text in my drawings. Sometimes those words become a part of my overall poetics.

A lot of times you will have something specific to say, however many great works of poetry are borne out of clear spontaneity, & good editing (not my forté haha).

Which brings me to my next point, that a lot of the great work of making poetry is in the editing. I’ll have to make posts about editing in particular as this goes along. For now I’ll say try not to think about the edits too much until it’s time.

You need to give yourself permission to write stuff you aren’t taken with too.

Like, I wrote a lot in the summer & then could barely journal or draw for 3 months. Still, in that time, I tried to write some poetry & honestly it was the worst; after a summer of not perfect writing, but stuff I was really pleased with consistently. 

& here’s the thing, if you’ve read this far, thank you, & here is the thing: I wrote poetry I literally laughed at & for the first time in my life, I let myself fail at probably one of my like 2 skills I’m kinda proud about. Because I knew I didn’t have more than that, but I still sat down to remind myself I’m a writer when I knew I couldn’t. 

Dear blogosphere, I must have written that night for no more than 5 minutes, & there I was congratulating myself for something which otherwise would have embarrassed me intensely, without even having to be criticized by a single soul. 

I gave myself permission to fail because I know what it means to be consistent.

& mind you it was in the middle of those months. By that point, I was out of practice & dealing with life things. But I wrote for 5 minutes.

I have chosen writing as my main art form because you can do it anywhere at any time even in your head writing is happening before it entirely becomes something. & poetry feels good. It is a wonderful tool for processing emotions & ideas.

So you can always have faith in yourself as a creative writer, even when you feel like you’re not writing or writing how you aspire to. That’s the permission to know you are always creating even when you can’t reach a pen.

When I say write from your gut, let yourself fail. Yet when you’ve found that spark again, remember that permission. Because that’s permission to reach inside yourself whether you know what’s coming out or not, to connect with something or someone around you, generating ideas from culture & personal meaning. 

Find that originality in your core self as you are. Take ideas & enjoy them as they sing.

© Niliema Karkhanis

Ampersands, revisions & request for input


Did you know that the ampersand was once the 27th letter of the English alphabet? It’s truly one of my most favourite symbols.

This means ‘and’ was once a letter & so crucial it became a member of the alphabet; similarly written to the number 8, denoting infinity, yet the ampersand is beautifully open ended.

Well it’s no wonder how much I love the meaning in that because I never see any work as completely finished…why I’m also so fond of the ellipsis.

All this to say, dear blogosphere, I encourage you to take a look back at any of my previous pieces because I wake up with edits I hadn’t even thought of on my mind. & I want every poem to be the best it can be so I do implement them.

New stuff coming, however if you are curious, also about my writing process, you might be interested in rereads. 💜

Thank you for being here. This blog is doing unexpectedly well thanks to you. I’m really excited to share my writings with all of you.

Also, I’m thinking of blogging reflections on writing, & on creating poetry in particular. If you are interested, please let me know by liking &/or commenting, as well if there are any topics or tips you would be interested in reading from me about please let me know.

I may start this anyway, but would love your feedback. You can message me directly on the about page of my website as well.

If you have thoughts about ellipses & ampersands, please do leave those too…

© Niliema Karkhanis

a thunder: consciousness stream

Photo by takenbytablo from Pexels


a thunder

& then the calm




slivers of time

held in trees

in whispers

you turn your head

to face what got

left behind

ahead there are

days & days

of questions

asked in daylight

& at night

not forgotten

under twilight’s

starry grin

in slumber

before nightfall

vivid dreams

& more questions

what got broken

won’t go back

together again

neither with

the magic of storms

nor the calm of a warm

sunny day


it’s in them

the bones of uncertainty

cool themselves

on the lines of

an early autumn afternoon

breaking lines of code

the traveling birds

singing silent 

or quiet songs

in many languages

into the sunset

crying wind

© Niliema Karkhanis