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The Writer's Mailbag: Installment 246

Updated on March 4, 2019

March Comes in Like a Lamb

Mother Nature is all confused, poor Dear! March is supposed to come in like a lion; instead she came in all meek and mild with our warmest day since mid-January. After the warmest January on record, and the coldest February on record, I can hardly wait to see what March has in store for us.

Language is a fascinating construct, don’t you think? The same word, or phrase, can mean different things to different people. Take the phrase “climate change, “for instance.

To many Liberals and Right Wing Conservatives in the United States, climate change is synonymous with “global warming.” It is a rallying cry for the environmental battle. Taken literally, though, it simply means that the climate is changing. In fact, the climate is constantly changing. The climate here, in Olympia, is drastically different from what it was when I was a child in the 1950’s. That’s not a political statement; that is simply a scientific, quantifiable statement of fact. And yet if I were to say that to certain groups of people, they hear me making a statement in favor of environmental measures and drastic changes to our lifestyles i.e. fossil fuels, etc.

So be careful in choosing your words, and on the other end of the spectrum, be careful how you interpret the words you read. Put another way, not all news is fake news. LOL

Let’s do this Mailbag thing, shall we?

Welcome to the Mail Room!
Welcome to the Mail Room!

No Outline

From Nithya: “A great mailbag installment, thank you for sharing. Writing with an outline all worked out in your mind is quite the feat. I wonder how you do it!”

NIthya, I honestly don’t know. I’m not terribly smart when it comes to the workings of the mind. I do know I am a very logical, organized person. I see things in linear fashion when solving problems. I go from Point A to Point B to Point C, one point at a time, finish one, move on to the next. I’m the exact opposite of my wife Bev, who sees twenty steps at the same time, does bits and pieces of Point A and Point F and Point Z simultaneously, and somehow ends up at the same conclusion I end up at.

I suspect my ability to outline in my mind is a direct result of that organized thought process I’m saddled with. It’s just the way I’m wired and thank God I am, because I hate writing outlines.

Mea culpa Sister Mary Elizabeth! You tried your best in 4th Grade and God bless you for it!

Song Lyrics and Poetry

From Pete: “Hey, Bill, lately you’ve shared song lyrics from Dan Fogelberg, and that’s got me thinking about poetry and song lyrics. Does it follow that a good poet would be a good songwriter? A song is nothing more than a poem to music, after all, so maybe many poets are missing their calling by not writing songs? Or is my logic flawed?”

This is a fascinating question, Pete. Thanks so much for asking it.

Let’s take a look at some lyrics from Fogelberg from his song “Ghosts.”

Sometimes in the night I feel it
Near as my next breath
And yet, untouchable
Silently the past comes
Stealing
Like the taste of some forbidden
Sweet.
Along the walls; in shadowed
Rafters

Moving like a thought through
Haunted atmospheres
Muted cries and echoed laughter

Banished dreams that never
Sank in sleep.
Lost in love and
Found in reason
Questions that the mind can find
No answers for
Ghostly eyes
Conspire treason
As they gather just outside the door....
Every ghost that calls upon us
Brings another measure
In the mystery
Death is there
To keep us honest
And constantly remind us
We are free.

Which came first, the lyrics or the tune? I’ve heard some songwriters start with the lyrics and add the music later. Others do the exact opposite. Different strokes for different folks, but that doesn’t answer your question. I do not think it naturally follows that a good poet can be a good songwriter. It takes talent to match words to notes, and not every poet has that talent. Dylan did it successfully, as did Coen. In the song above, Fogelberg wrote the poem and then added music.

J.D. Souther, a songwriter in the 1970’s, said all a good poet has to do is dumb down his poetry to write pop music.

I suspect it all boils down to this: it takes talent to combine good poetry and music. Some have that talent. Others do not. I will never be able to do that, and I’m fine with that. On the other hand, I’m willing to bet I can write a better novel than Dylan can. I don’t say that with any hint of ego. I just don’t think Dylan is wired the same way I am.

There are no time restrictions when writing a novel.
There are no time restrictions when writing a novel.

How Long to Write a Novel

From Missy: “I know you’ve written several novels. I’m thinking about writing my first. How long do you think it should take to write a full-length novel?”

Missy, it takes as long as it takes, and I do not say that facetiously. If I have the time I can write a 75,000 word novel, and publish it, in six months. The one I’m working on now has taken over a year. I have a friend who took three years to write her first. It took Harper Lee a year to write “To Kill A Mockingbird.” There is no simple answer to your question. It’s going to take you as long as it takes you to complete it. I send best wishes for your journey!

Goodbye February!
Goodbye February!

Enjoy the Lamb While It Lasts

That’s it for this week. I hope you are enjoying a mild March like we are. May March be fruitful for you all. Remember to spend all thirty-one days of March living in love. The world needs you to do so!

And finally, Rest in Peace to a HP and blogging buddy, Greg Boudonck, who passed away quite suddenly Friday night in Puerto Rico. He posted his blog, went to bed, and died. Food for thought as you begin your work week. Make it count!

You will be missed, Greg my friend. I will not forget you, and your words will live on long after we are all pushing up daisies.

2019 William D. Holland (aka billybuc)

“Helping writers to spread their wings and fly.”

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    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      5 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      Mary, if we all have it, I wish mine would surface soon before it's too late. lol

    • aesta1 profile image

      Mary Norton 

      5 weeks ago from Ontario, Canada

      Beautiful poetry in songs always touch me and I'm glad there are singers who have the talent to do this. Just like novel writers, there is discipline but there is a huge talent in very good writers to capture experiences and settings in words that make them vivi and interesting for the readers. I sometimes wonder if this talent is gifted to a few or that we all have it and it only needs to be developed.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      5 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      I'm happy to hear that, Devika. Thank you!

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      5 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Linda! You and me both regarding the snow. Bring on Spring!!!

    • DDE profile image

      Devika Primić 

      5 weeks ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

      The weather is different in Croatia as well. Spring at the moment but snow is expected. Your hubs are most helpful.

    • AliciaC profile image

      Linda Crampton 

      5 weeks ago from British Columbia, Canada

      I hope we don't get any more snow here. I've had enough for this winter. I was sorry to read about what happened to Greg. It's always sad to hear about a death of a writer, even when I don't know them.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      5 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Li-Jen....it is all there for we writers to describe....a huge world just waiting for our written word.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      5 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      Well I'm happy you stopped by, my friend. Now clean out your eyes and get on with your Sunday! Happy Sunday to you!

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      5 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      Hallelujah indeed, Lori! I'm done with snow.

    • Li-Jen Hew profile image

      Li-Jen Hew 

      5 weeks ago

      Hey Bill, I enjoyed your intro about January to March. It's a special touch when you describe months. I should think of months that way too. You are good in creating organized "outlines" in your head. Good quality output and environmentally friendly too. Thanks for the share.

    • DREAM ON profile image

      DREAM ON 

      5 weeks ago

      Another day and another morning to make life fun and exciting. Sometimes we don't have to do a thing. Life just hits us like a fast moving rain that turns to sleet. I don't know why but I have to look up high in the sky. You guessed it, I got it right in the eye. I just came back to watch your videos on your hubs and I couldn't just come and go without saying hello.

    • lambservant profile image

      Lori Colbo 

      5 weeks ago from Pacific Northwest

      It all melted within a few hours -hallelujah.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      5 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      Thanks for your thoughts, Lori! I think we've seen the last of the snow for this year, thank goodness. As for songwriting, it will forever evade me,and that's okay.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      5 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      Thanks for your thoughts, Mike! You have a perspective about songwriting I can't possibly have, so your thoughts are worthwhile.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      5 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Eman! It's always a pleasure having you visit.

    • lambservant profile image

      Lori Colbo 

      5 weeks ago from Pacific Northwest

      I woke up today with a couple of inches of snow. I live just up the freeway from you, hope you're holding up okay. These were good questions. I will share a piece of advice to writers that if you ever want to share lyrics in your writing, you need permission from the copyright holder. I learned this when I was writing my blackbird story here on Hubpages. A friend brought this to my attention. I had no idea. So I took the lyrics out of the story which were an important thread in the story. It spoiled it a bit. I wanted to put the story into a book so I had to do an internet search to find the copyright holder. I finally found them and got permission, but it cost me $150. Some dear friends offered to pay for it for which I am truly grateful.

      I think songwriters are poets, but I do not think poets are songwriters. You have to have the knowledge and a gift to make music.

      I'm taking forever to write my first novel.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      5 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      Sha, the suddenness of it blew me away. He had just posted his blog. Very sad, my friend.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      5 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Peg! I do write every day, but not creatively, which would be my first choice. Still, the bills have to be paid.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      5 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you John! You are never late here, my friend. Driest on record? That's saying quite a bit for where you live. Here's hoping you have some relief soon.

    • Mike Grindle profile image

      Mike Grindle 

      5 weeks ago from UK

      Interesting article, especially your reflections on poets and songwriters.

      I grew up quite musically inclined so I spent a lot of time writing lyrics. Had I not picked up a guitar, I wander if I would have written poetry instead?

      Ultimately, I think lyrics and poetry are simply a few nuances apart and a good poet could become a good songwriter (and vice-versa) if they have the drive and determination.

      Sorry to hear about your friend.

    • Emmy ali profile image

      Eman Abdallah Kamel 

      6 weeks ago from Egypt

      A very interesting article. I think the weather around the world is different this year than in the past years, I also think that most of the news is fake. Writing, in general, is based on talent and writing novels is a deeper talent, not an easy one. Writing a good novel may take a year or more.

    • bravewarrior profile image

      Shauna L Bowling 

      6 weeks ago from Central Florida

      What a shock to hear about Greg! My heart goes out to his family. He'll be missed by his HP family, as well.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      6 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Rajan! May Greg rest in peace, for sure.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      6 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Mary! I never thought I could write lyrics or poetry. :)

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      6 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Venkatachari M! Stay cool, my friend, and thank you for the condolences.

    • PegCole17 profile image

      Peg Cole 

      6 weeks ago from Northeast of Dallas, Texas

      You're so right about choosing words carefully. Everyone seems to wear their feelings on their sleeves these days. It's like walking on egg shells.

      I heard a motivational speaker (I think it was Zig Ziglar) say that if you want to write a book, write every day. I believe that Stephen King says the same thing. They may be onto something.

      My condolences to you on the loss of your friend Greg. It does seem that we're losing so many folks these days. May he rest in peace.

    • Jodah profile image

      John Hansen 

      6 weeks ago from Queensland Australia

      Sorry I am late reading this mailbag, Bill. I didn't have the pleasure of knowing Greg but his passing is sad and may he rest in peace.

      I feel a lot of songwriters are great poets, but not all poets are songwriters. Dan Fogleberg, Bob Dylan, Leonard Cohen, Lennon and McCartney, Don McLean are a few good ones. I have had two poems made into songs, but I had no input or expertise in the process of adapting them to music or vice versa.

      The weather, oh, the weather. Autumn is here and the last two days were hotter than the last two weeks of summer. Dark clouds tease us with a bit of thunder and lightning but still no rain to speak of. Summer here was one of the driest on record.

      I never have an outline for anything I write. Maybe, like you, I store it in my head. Enjoyable mailbag, Bill.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      6 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Peg! Wouldn't you know it, it's snowing again as I type this. Grrrrrr!

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      6 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Chitrangada Sharan. I hope that climate trend changes soon, don't you?

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      6 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      MIke, you are absolutely correct...those occurences happen far too often these days. I'm afraid, buddy, that you and I are getting old.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      6 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Alyssa! I think we all deserve Spring right about now. Here's hoping it starts this weekend.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      6 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      Dream On, thank you for your kind words. I like what you said about the HP community. We have known each other for a few years now; we are friends. It's as simple as that.

      Spring, where are you???

    • rajan jolly profile image

      Rajan Singh Jolly 

      6 weeks ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA.

      The weather this year has been colder than in many years past. March being way milder as well. Hope this continues for as long as it can as a record hot summer has been forecast for us.

      Sorry to learn about a fellow hubber's demise. May his soul rest in peace.

    • Blond Logic profile image

      Mary Wickison 

      6 weeks ago from Brazil

      Hi Bill,

      Our rainy season has started and our lakes are nearly full already!

      Funny thing about songs and poetry, I always thought I could write lyrics but never poetry. I tend to waffle on too much.

      Sorry to hear about your friend's passing.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      6 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      it came as a shock to me, Dora, only because he had just posted his blog about six hours earlier. I read the blog and then turned to Facebook and saw he died.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      6 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Rasma, and Happy Monday to you. Who would supply the music? That is a problem, isn't it? lol

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      6 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      Good God, Heidi, enough is enough with this winter. I wave the white flag and surrender. How about you?

      Songwriting is a mystery to me. Lennon and McCarthy were collaborative on many of their early songs, and the process just baffles me.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      6 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      Thanks, Bill, and stay inside safe today. It's fascinating to me how we all go about living differently. Organization is just one example...our minds are complicated things, are they not?

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      6 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      Too darned cold, MizB. Twenty last night, in March...what the heck is going on? I don't like hearing about pipes freezing. I hope you aren't currently flooding because of it.

      Great minds indeed. I'll always be happy being lumped in with you.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      6 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      Happy, you always give me the gift of laughter, and for that I thank you.

      I've never had lamb. How is that possible?

      No, you cannot rush creativity. Some may try and that same some will fail...just my opinion.

      Tech difficulties...my "e" sticks. Do you know how often we type "e"?....too many times to count.

      Have a great week my friend.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      6 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      Pamela, it's an interesting question. I think I'll do some research on that and get back to you next Monday.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      6 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      Liz, you hit that nail on the head. My workspace is immaculate. I almost hate to admit that. I feel like I'm a bit over the top in that department. :) I believe Elton John was such a songwriter...he did the music, another person did most of the lyrics...or the other way around, perhaps.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      6 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      Verlie, good morning to you! Twenty degrees this morning here...unheard of for March in these parts. Sigh! I would kill for a sixty degree day. lol Have a great week and thank you for your kind words.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      6 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      Melissa, I've been following the weather news and I feel for ya. I hope that mess melts soon so you can see the daffodils. :)

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      6 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      Jackie, that is really a wonderful idea...free firewood from the City...why isn't that done, I wonder? It seems like such a natural thing to do.

      Sorry to hear about your eye surgery. I hope it went well. Welcome back!

    • Venkatachari M profile image

      Venkatachari M 

      6 weeks ago from Hyderabad, India

      This is one more interesting mailbag with some beautiful opinions and reflections from you.

      Here, in India, it is hot already with some high temperatures. Even though it is still the start of spring, we are running fans at speed. It seems we may need to run the coolers or ACs early this time. This is the climate change right here as compared to those previous years.

      I am sorry for the news of the demise of that friend of ours here. May his soul rest in peace.

    • Peggy W profile image

      Peggy Woods 

      6 weeks ago from Houston, Texas

      Your admonition as to interpreting the meaning of words is well taken. Climate change seemingly means different things to different people. We had very few freezes this past winter, and the typical last freeze date for Houston is in late February. Yet we had freezing weather last night...so March is coming in like a lion down here.

      May your HP friend rest in peace and his words live on to inspire others.

      I hope your wood outlasts your cold weather! Stay warm and toasty in your neck of the woods!

    • ChitrangadaSharan profile image

      Chitrangada Sharan 

      6 weeks ago from New Delhi, India

      Interesting questions and useful answers and as always, I enjoyed going through the mailbag.

      I agree with the weather. I think everywhere, it’s an extended winter season.

      Thank You for sharing!

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      6 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      Thanks' Pop! It seems everything is political these days.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      6 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      I totally agree, Flourish!

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      6 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Nithya! May he rest in peace!

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      6 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      That's okay, Shannon! I'll just imagine you as having perfect pitch! lol

    • mckbirdbks profile image

      mckbirdbks 

      6 weeks ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas

      Hi Bill - Sorry for the loss of your friend. These occurrences happy all too frequently these days.

      In a John Irving documentary he said some of his novels have taken five years to complete. He also said he used to jump up out of bed to write something down so he would not forget the thought. Then realized that those sentences seldom made it into the novel - so he stopped leaping up to write down random thoughts.

      I don't know anything about the lions and lambs.

    • Alyssa Nichol profile image

      Alyssa 

      6 weeks ago from Ohio

      Good morning, Bill! Sounds like the weather isn't too bad up there, but over here is a different story. We saw the lion. haha! Another excellent mailbag. I am always in awe of songwriters, and how they string words together, creating a timeless piece of art. I used to spend hours writing poetry growing up and now I wish I was more musically inclined.

      I hope the weather stays nice for you. Have a wonderful week!

    • DREAM ON profile image

      DREAM ON 

      6 weeks ago

      As always you give every writer or dreamer much food for thought. I love your good practical advice straight from the hip. When you get old they say to be very careful. A lot of times if you break a hip it is really hard to recover. Well, once again you give us pointers and proven mistakes and failures as examples. What else could a person ask for? I just want to send out appreciation to all those writers that have helped other writers not because they have to but because they want to. They take minutes out of their life to make a difference. Thank you. Sometimes if you wait for the right moment life slips by and you never get the chance. So what better time than now. To lose a family member or a friend that we knew is very tough. The more time we spend on the computer the more we get to know each other. I didn't know Greg Boudnock's but I still think it is almost impossible not to be affected by another hubber who loved to write and will be missed. In sad times family's pull together and support each other. I think in the virtual world (Hub Pages) I think it is also possible. At least on billybucs Writers Mailbag. You have taught us about writing and better yet about human compassion. The groundhog was wrong this year. We just had twelve inches of snow in Maine. I told my wife a week before I am glad winter is over. I spoke too soon. She told me I had to open my big mouth. I wonder if I wrote about it instead would it still happen? Hope your March is better than my March. Have a good night.

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Weithers 

      6 weeks ago from The Caribbean

      Thanks for passing on that information about Greg. Sorry to hear. My condolences to his family as well as his HP friends. Thanks also for answering and sharing in response to readers' questions.

    • Gypsy Rose Lee profile image

      Gypsy Rose Lee 

      6 weeks ago from Riga, Latvia

      Happy Monday! Hope you have an inspirational new week. My thought is that many of the great classic rockers were poets first. I think you could put music to most poetry but if you are just a poet who will supply the music?

    • heidithorne profile image

      Heidi Thorne 

      6 weeks ago from Chicago Area

      Happy Monday!

      Re: Which Comes First? The Song or the Lyrics? I've always been fascinated at how people write music. I just don't understand the mental or emotional workings of how it's done. Even more, I don't understand how songwriting teams work. For example, how did Lady Gaga and a couple others collaborate to write the Oscar winning "Shallow?" "Okay, you write three lines, I'll put some notes together..." Completely baffles me. But then they probably wouldn't understand what we book writers do either. That's what makes this world great.

      Anyhow, we had -3 F., with wind chills of -20 F., this morning for the early days of our "meteorological spring." Well, we're hoping this climate changes in a couple of weeks. :)

      Have a great week!

    • bdegiulio profile image

      Bill De Giulio 

      6 weeks ago from Massachusetts

      Hi Bill. March has been all over the place so far, warm and sunny on Sunday, 7 inches of heavy, wet snow this morning. Go figure. The mailbag may be short, but interesting questions. I do use an outline sometimes when writing travel hubs. It seems to help me organize things into a proper order. Have a great week, Bill.

    • MizBejabbers profile image

      Doris James MizBejabbers 

      6 weeks ago from Beautiful South

      Bill, I love your four opening paragraphs about the weather, probably because we really relate to them. Larry and I've discussed many times how the weather has changed from the consistently cold icy winters we lived through as children in the Ozarks.

      I laughed at your answer to Missy. The exact answer popped into my head before I read yours. Great minds....

      I know you write this on Fridays, so I'll say right now we are in the middle of a three- or four-day cold spell. Down in the teens last night and the pipes froze in our Little Rock house we are putting on the market.

      P.S. I love Fogelberg. Stay warm, my friend, and we'll try to do the same.

    • shanmarie profile image

      Shannon Henry 

      6 weeks ago from Texas

      Thanks, Bill, but you don't want to hear me sing. I'm pitchy, especially when a capella, and I don't have a proper recording with instruments anymore.qa

    • Mr. Happy profile image

      Mr. Happy 

      6 weeks ago from Toronto, Canada

      You know ... I just wrote a bunch and then the page vanished because I was no longer logged-in. There ya go. That's what happens when You're governed by the Air Element: things just vanish sometimes. Now my keybord was stuck for a moment lmao Technical difficulties. Haha!!

      I enjoyed your piece, especially the part about: "Missy, it takes as long as it takes". That made me laugh. Initially I wrote: "And in other news, water is wet". Now thinking about it a little more I gotta say that that's the truth: You can't rush creativity. I think doing so would be a disaster. Whenever You finish your book, or painting, or statue, that's when You finish. Putting a deadline on creating art feels wrong. I am sure some might do it but I wouldn't.

      "Enjoy the Lamb While It Lasts" - I'm having lamb for Easter. It's a tradition for Greek Orthodox people to have lamb soup and lamb roast for Easter. So, just next month. Lamb is around the corner for me lol Now, I'm hungry thinking about lamb : )

      You have a wonderful week and a productive one at that! All the very best!

    • Pamela99 profile image

      Pamela Oglesby 

      6 weeks ago from Sunny Florida

      These are Interesting topics today. I think pointing out the various takes on a word such as climate is a good reminder of words being perceived differently.

      You and Bev sound a bit like my husband and I. I can muti-task fairly easily and keep on target. My husband focuses intently on any project and he always seems to succeed in whatever he tackles. I know it is best to leave him alone in those circumstances. I wonder if men and woman are different as to muti-tasking? What do you think Bill?

    • Eurofile profile image

      Liz Westwood 

      6 weeks ago from UK

      I have read your comments on climate change with interest. The choice of words can be crucial. I am guessing that your orderly mind translates also to an orderly workspace. Would that be right? Sometimes it takes two to write a song, one to do the lyrics and another to compose the music to go with it. Sad to hear of the loss of a hubber.

    • Vellur profile image

      Nithya Venkat 

      6 weeks ago from Dubai

      Thank you for answering my question, you are blessed. Saying a prayer for Greg Boudonck, May his soul Rest In Peace.

    • snakeslane profile image

      Verlie Burroughs 

      6 weeks ago from Canada

      Morning Bill, love your snow scene, what a lovely place you have. Thanks for letting us know about a Hub Pages alumnus who passed away, good of you to do that. How else would we know? That you can write a full length novel in such a short time is mind boggling to me. You've got the gift. Climate change and global warming are so entwined, it is hard to pick out the strands of truth and misconception in that discussion. I just try to stay informed, and looking out my window this morning I can see that winter ain't quite over in my neck of the woods. Have a great week Mr. Mailbag.

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 

      6 weeks ago from USA

      Some of the most stunning poetry is set to music.

    • breakfastpop profile image

      breakfastpop 

      6 weeks ago

      To me, lyrics are poetry. As for climate change, well climate changes. Making something political out of it is ludicrous.

    • mpropp profile image

      Melissa Propp 

      6 weeks ago from Minnesota

      Happy Monday Bill! You got a lamb, I got a lion! 5 inches of snow on the 1st and then -10 degrees for the next three days. It had better go out like a lamb...or we might have snow into July!

      The discussion of poets being songwriters is really interesting. I guess I always saw most of the songwriters as poets, but not necessarily the other way around...very curious indeed.

      Hope you have a great and productive week! Think Spring!

    • Jackie Lynnley profile image

      Jackie Lynnley 

      6 weeks ago from The Beautiful South

      Nearly out of wood, such a shame! On all my many walks I see so many downed trees and huge logs that someone cut up but didn't take (such as parks and things) and have often wished I had a fireplace or something to keep that from going to waste. Oh, I know they have their rules and all but they really should stack these woods for people to use. Talk about green! lol

      Been having eye surgery and not around much lately. Hope you and yours are doing great! I miss everyone!

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      6 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Zulma...it was just a bit of a shock..in fact, I was reading his blog when notification of his death popped up....just an eye-opener for us all.

    • phoenix2327 profile image

      Zulma Burgos-Dudgeon 

      6 weeks ago from United Kingdom

      My condolences, Bill. Just goes to show how important it is to live life to the fullest. At least he will he be remembered through his words. It's a wonderful legacy to leave us.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      6 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      Linda, we are just about out of wood. It needs to warm up quickly since that is our only source of heat. As for "Sounds of Silence," a great example and I totally get it!

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      6 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      Janine, one of those unavoidable truths...if we have bad weather here, you will eventually get it there. No need to thank us. We were happy to share after the February we had. :)

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      6 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      You are too kind to me, Eric, but I'll take the compliment in the spirit it is given. Thank you my friend.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      6 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      Thanks William! Stay safe and warm. They tell me Spring is approaching. Let's hold onto that hope. I do like that description of dumbed-down poetry....too true I'm afraid.

    • billybuc profile imageAUTHOR

      Bill Holland 

      6 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      Thanks for sharing that, Shannon! I would love to hear those few songs you have written. Perhaps you could make a Youtube presentation of them? :)

    • Carb Diva profile image

      Linda Lum 

      6 weeks ago from Washington State, USA

      Poetry and lyrics--I've never been "into" reading poetry, but put a well-crafted melody underneath with thoughtful composition and my heart swells. "Songs of Silence" as offered by Simon and Garfunkel is good, but listen to the interpretation by Disturbed and tell me what THAT does to you? (Maybe this has nothing to do with poetry and lyrics, oh well. TIme for a 2nd cup of coffee).

      Like you I am thankful that the snow is in the rear view mirror, but dang it's too cold! Thank you for another mailbag and have a great week my friend.

    • Janine Huldie profile image

      Janine Huldie 

      6 weeks ago from New York, New York

      No lamb here as we have had snow for the past 3 out of 4 days of March so far here. Plus, the temperatures are supposed to drop by Wednesday to polar-like once again. I know Spring will find us eventually, but right now it feels like a long way off. That said, wishing you a wonderful Monday and week ahead. And please send some warmth our way soon! :)

    • Ericdierker profile image

      Eric Dierker 

      6 weeks ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Are we having some fun here. You remind me of an oars man who dove off the boat to save my ass in a rapid in the Grand Canyon. Real men lift others up. You are that Bill.

    • lifegate profile image

      William Kovacic 

      6 weeks ago from Pleasant Gap, PA

      The Lion is here in Pennsylvania, Bill. High winds, snow, and ice are the order of the day here in the Northeast. I liked the songwriting question. I wrote songs before I wrote fiction. As much as I hate to admit it, songwriting is dumbed-down poetry. Some poetry would never fit a musical rhythm but flows so nicely without music. Thanks again for another fact-filled mailbag!

    • shanmarie profile image

      Shannon Henry 

      6 weeks ago from Texas

      A lamb? Surely you must be mistaken. No, maybe not. It's all mixed up here, too. At least to me it is! Last night the creeks around here froze and just a few days ago it was so nice and warm enough. I'm ready for the lamb to stay!

      As for poetry and songs, you are correct that it depends on the person or people writing the song. I've done interviews with enough music artists to know that the process can go both ways. Personally, since I've only written a few songs, it's the poem that comes first. A couple of times the lyrics and the melody came simultaneously to me at the same time.

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