12 Apr

Out of Apathy (Poetry)

Out of Apathy is an original poem written and shared by Bernette Sherman.

It is available in Resist Persist (May 23, 2017) on Amazon at https://www.amazon.com/dp/B06XT2MKDX.

Bernette will be sharing writing and poetry from her inspirational book Heaven is Now: Enough Excuses and Resist Persist at the Book Signing and Reading on April 29th at the Book House in Mableton, GA. If you are in the metro Atlanta area, please come out to meet me and two other local authors.

06 Apr

Whisper in the Wind (Poem Sample)

whisper-in-the-wind-bernette-sherman

Whisper in the Wind

My hands glide across the keyboard

and yet I stare at nothing

Inspiration sapped by desperation

What words can I even say?

Does nothing mean anything?

 

My tears dot the “I”

I cannot, I will not leave the keys

Something may yet come forth

But I’m not supposed to let it

It isn’t polite

to speak such things or in that way

 

Smile and wave

that’s how you do it,

get through it

One more day

Smile and wave

 

Stuff it down

Cuz my irritation

isn’t welcome here

Never was

Will it ever be?

 

Will anyone ever care to hear?

That I’m tired

and sometimes angry

At the ignorance and lies

At arrogance and pompous clowns

Who have never lived real life

 

The keyboard does no justice

Yet it is where I am

My canvas to paint a better world

With vivid color, brush the land

 

(Full poem in Resist Persist book – releases May 2017)

Preorder resist persist now by bernette sherman

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

You might also enjoy this video of calming and relaxing ocean waves and breeze.

26 Mar

Would the World Care?

missing-dc

Here’s a list with a couple more missing DC girls and the poem I wrote this morning as I feel some kind of way. After writimg this I channeled my emotions in the studio that morning. Whew!

missing-dc

My daughter is 14 and if we were in DC this could be her. She’s the one who did the art for the poetry book cover coming out soon. She is vibrant and thoughtful and loving and I wonder:

If the world would care

if someone just up and snatched her away?

Would the world care

if she didn’t come home

because she’s black

and ‘they’ do things like that?

Would people search in droves

like they do for girls

with straighter hair and lighter skin?

Or would her case and my pleas

be put on the top of a growing pile

of cases deprioritized

because she doesn’t fit the profile

of one demanding attention?

Is her innocence compromised

because of her appearance?

Is she judged as unworthy

because of her parents?

Does the world, by its inaction

tell her, her life doesn’t matter

and let the curtain fall?

 

Or do good men and women

Those with hearts for all

Those who vow to equality and justice

Those sworn to protect the innocent

and bring right to the wrong;

do they rise up and search out

the dark corners and seedy places?

Ask the questions that are required

And persist because she’s worth it?

As they all are, as we all are

Because I know that decent people

who work to make things better

in DC face sleepless nights

and for that I thank you

But call up the press and do not stop

Before their picture’s on every station

Newspapers front page and radio

Shout out and tell the nation

Our girls our missing

Your daughters gone

We must find them

Bring them home

-Bernette Sherman

25 Mar

New Poetry Book – Resist Persist – Available Soon!

Preorder resist persist now

I’m excited to announce that my first book of complete poetry will be available soon as an ebook. You can pre-order now at https://www.amazon.com/dp/B06XT2MKDX.

The book includes poetry that challenges our ideas around involvement, activism, peace, and living now. We can resist and still persist.

This is a personal collection with most works written in the last few years, sprinkled with a few that span more than a decade. A glimpse into my own complexities, this book will leave you inspired to be an active participant in this inter-sectional and complicated existence called life.

Oh and be sure to pre-order and save your receipt to either send for $10 off class registration and to get my upcoming single  free. (It will be releasing this Spring if all goes just right.)

18 Mar

Ready to Soar

 Ready to Soar

by Bernette Sherman

 

 

She sits atop a mountain

The view she holds is grand

The wind refreshing and pure

The rock cool beneath her fingers

 

She inhales, she exhales

Her breath shallow with the altitude

Her heart pounding like a drum

Anticipation

 

Potential explodes within her chest

She dreams of flying from this peak

Watching a beautiful world

As she soars as if on eagles’ wings

 

Still she sits quietly

Like ice warming, melting

The energy slowly flowing

Knowing where she stands

(Included in Heaven is Now: Enough Excuses)

17 Mar

Self-Publishing versus Traditional Publishing – Part Two

time is money

Read part 1

Scroll to bottom for video of part 1

As I mentioned in part one, time and promotion are reasons I’m considering pursuing a traditional publisher. I’ll start with time. There are many writers who work full-time and then write in what little spare time remains. I count myself lucky that I consider being a writer, speaker, and coach my full-time work. Even with that, the time to write is impeded on because of all those things mentioned above – remember the re-writing, editing, re-editing, beta-reading, etcetera.

self-editing1

This is where I think a traditional publisher has the edge. That mess takes time. A heck of a lot of time. Time I could use writing another book or first re-write of maybe the other 3 books that are written in my Chosen series. Yeah. The whole dang series is written but at the pace I can read, re-write, edit, and do it again, it may be a couple of years to get it done. Daunting! Oh, but you say, you can just pay for someone to do this. Yeah, you can…try…and I have…

It’s quite possible I’m not going about it the right way, but finding a good editor has been a challenge. Especially one that the ROI is going to be worth it. I hate to say it, but a lot of them aren’t that great. I look at the reviews of their books on Amazon and see comments that indicate poor editing (like literally there will be reviews that say ‘poorly edited’). So, I’m like WTH? But editing is crucial because the lack of good editing will get you rocked in reviews.

The truth is, this is a hit and miss game when it comes to finding freelancers who edit, beta-read, do covers and the other things helpful in getting your book ready for the market. I learned this the hard way with book one. It was a gut punch and after having to pull it back TWICE from Amazon to make corrections based on solid feedback, not only is the book stronger, but so is my writing. A publishing house probably would’ve caught the things everyone else missed the first go round. They would’ve saved me from the egg on my face, the agony of going through 100,000 words to bring it to a tighter book of just under 90,000 words.

time is moneyThat time is money and that energy is my creative process. It goes both ways. You have a book that is an amazing story for right now. You have a book that you want to see out in the next six months not next two years. They can save you from personally agonizing over fine-combing a lengthy manuscript. The energy they save you can be used in the creative process not the editing process. These savings of your personal labor for this part of the process, still carries a cost. The question you need to ask yourself is whether it is worth that cost.

Do you have a budget to personally pay for the services or the personal skills needed to bring your book to life by way of editing, book cover design, formatting? What’s your experience been in doing this yourself or having others do it for you?

To be continued with part three on March 24th.

 FOCUS 4 Week Draft Cover KindleFOCUS: How to Write a Four Week First Draft

09 Mar

Self-Publishing versus Traditional Publishing – Part One

Being a self-published author isn’t all rainbows, bubbles, and blue skies. As I delve into taking my music from my computer to something more public, I’m learning that being an indie artist of any kind isn’t.  (Don’t hold your breath just yet). In fact, being a published indie author is often hard, long, thankless work to create something that it is quite possible no one else will read. The countless hours add up as you write, re-write, find an editor (or three or four), edit, edit again, find beta-readers, incorporate feedback, revise again.

You get the point, and I haven’t even gotten to covers and promoting your work. It’s no picnic on the serene edge of a beautiful lake with luscious greenery as a backdrop while you sip on cool raspberry lemonade.

BUT – yes, thankfully, there is a but…

When you birth that book and you hold that baby (whether on a tablet or in paperback) you will cherish it because by the end you will have cried, laughed, celebrated, holed up in a room to get a way, and gone through a myriad of emotions that are only appreciated when it is you that is 100% invested in your book baby.

I started this journey as a serious writer and author at the end of December 2015 and since then I have published one full length novel, two novellas, a short story, and a few non-fiction works. I have come to appreciate the arduous labor of love and commitment it takes for anyone to make a book come to life and I hold a truckload of respect for self-published authors and indie artists in general.

Before you crap on an indie author who has labored to bring a story to life, take a moment and consider there is no full-scale team of paid employees to catch your every mistake, hold your hand as you go, do some of this time-intensive work for you so that you shine brighter, and then give you a platform and the clout to promote your books. See, traditional publishers make the magic happen for those authors – to a point.

I say to a point, because even the traditional publishing route has changed. I’m sure if you are reading this, you already know or at least suspect that. When self-publishing was taking off in 2011 and 2012 I was busy preparing to give birth to my second child and then raising him and my daughter. I missed the golden age.

However, in that time, regular publishers were going through a huge change too, floundering in this new ocean crowded by people who didn’t seem to need them but were filling the market space with books competing with theirs. GASP! SHOCK! HORROR!

When I was writing my first manuscript for book one of the Chosen Series I investigated whether it was worth publishing with a regular publisher. I looked at the math and the time-frames and the restrictive nature in which you could submit to legitimate publishers. I read success stories of Amazon authors but they’d found their way into the limelight when ebooks were still a new phenomenon. Now that field is so crowded new authors are struggling to find a voice. Where’s Waldo? Who the heck knows? Is he even in the crowd? Probably, seems everyone else is!

After a year, I am again considering whether to pursue the traditional route for my stand alone sci-fi novel that I’m editing now. Why? Time and promotion. Those two things are a linchpin to having a book that 1. gets published and 2. sells. Can I say, duh! about what that means in terms of value as a writer?

Are you an indie author? How much time do you spend on the publishing process and promotion? I’d love to hear your thoughts so drop your comments or personal experiences in the comments.

Check back in a week for the next part of this self-publishing versus traditional publishing series.

In the meantime, you may want to check out some of my books and help an indie author out.

FOCUS: How to Write a Four Week First Draft

FOCUS 4 Week Draft Cover Kindle

Want to listen to me read the blog post instead? Here it is on YouTube.

08 Mar

FREE Creative Core Studio Preview Class – March 30 (Register Now)

Creative Expression Through Words
Thursday March 30
6:30pm to 8:30pm
Suggested for Teens, Young Adults, and Above

Learn about Creative Core and Studio
Create/develop poem, short story, or monologue
Share work with the group and parents (if desired)

  • Raffle for all participants
  • Register by March 29 for special raffle
  • Online registration ends 12 noon on March 30
  • Bring something to write with and your creativity

REGISTER