16 August 2006

Real cheese.

So tell me: what's the trick to writing a good personal narrative statement about your work?

I am sitting here doing my Ohio Arts Council excellence award application and I feel like my personal statement is really stupid.

Why is it so hard to write about yourself? Is anybody good at this?

11 comments:

Jordan said...

If you find out, don't keep it a secret, please.

It wouldn't be free money without the pain barrier, would it.

Penultimatina said...

Indeed!

I just stuffed my statement with metaphors, including one about a dandelion. Good golly.

jeannine said...

I'm struggling to write a "statement of poetics" for an application. I'm having the same problems...um, I want to write, um, good poems...

Catherine said...

heh...all I do is write about myself.
And I would LOVE to write something else. How sad is that?

Justin Evans said...

All I ever do on those statements is talk about what poetry should do, what it is, and why I love it so much.

I talk about how poetry is a means of communion, and keeping myself connected to that inside of me which is most human and humane.

It never seems to convince anyone once they read my poetry.

Steven D. Schroeder said...

I thought my personal statement for my MFA applications sucked (way too generic and general), but apparently it did the job. Next year I'll just make it more over the top and individualized.

Frank said...

I suspect if someone seems good at writing about him/herself, s/he has simply commissioned another to do the job.

Penultimatina said...

Are you volunteering, Frank?

Writing and Creativity said...

Many of my writer friends agree the bio or contributor's note or author's note is the most excruciating writing they have ever done. Except my friend who published a collection of literary short stories -- she had to describe each one in one sentence. Yikes! Currently, I am wrestling with who should be included in an acknowledgements page -- not the poetry kind, where you list places the poems previously appeared, and maybe a nod to the residency place that allowed the time to create them -- but a commercial trade paperback kind, where you might list everyone who was ever nice to you.

I keep those personal statements on grant and residency applications short and coherent, myself. They often do not come close to filling the space allotted for them. Good luck!

Writing and Creativity said...

Oh, I was signed in as a different Blogger than I thought I was - "Writing and Creativity" is "Kelly in Nebraska" usually - not that I've commented much but just to keep the record straight. I've been messing with Blogger the last few days and don't know who I am anymore!

Penultimatina said...

Welcome, and thanks for your insights, Kelly (or whoever you are)! :)