My (Terrible) Writing Abroad

Well, I’m back. Did you miss me? Of course not! I left a bunch of posts to be posted while I was away. While I was abroad in Taiwan, I did have internet access at regular intervals, but being in a new environment, working, and trying to get along with my group, I didn’t really have much of a chance to write, either in the blog or on personal projects.

I brought a book to research with me and, in a month, I made it about half-way through. There’s just something about a new environment that keeps me from settling into a pattern that would be conducive to writing.

I had a lot of other things to do, mind you, like lesson plan when our kids were more advanced English speakers than we were planning on having, or write in my journal, or read, or go to town exploring the new country I was in.

I did write a little, but I was so distracted I don’t like anything that I wrote. I didn’t even write down a good sentiment or feeling that could be transitioned into something grander.

I’m beginning to think that I’m not the kind of writer that documents major life events or feelings in words, but rather I find concepts I like and I try to write about those. I feel like, while traveling, I tried to write what was expected of someone on a journey rather than focus on concepts like I usually do.

And what came out of me was stuff I didn’t like so I didn’t write too often. Here are some of my terrible, terrible haikus:

I pity the rain
That falls onto the pavement
Never feeling green

The crashing thunder
Sings an unchanged melody
To a pilgrim’s ear

Small accomplishments
Grow as seasons progress
Into realized dreams

I listen to rain
Tickle the forest outside
As I sip warm tea

Well, now that I’m home again, it’s time to re-establish my writing schedule and fall back into the pattern of creating things I’m rather prouder to share than what’s above. I think that, upon reflection, I’ll be able to document my feelings and conceptualize a piece that really does my time abroad justice.

– Amanda Riggle


About ThePandaBard

Amanda is the Managing Editor at The Poetics Project and of The Socialist, the national magazine of The Socialist Party USA. She graduated with a BA in English Education and a minor in Political Science. She is currently enrolled in an English MA program with an emphasis in Literature. During her free time, Amanda enjoys writing poetry, reading, traveling, crocheting, watching entire seasons of campy shows on Netflix, and, of course, writing blogs. You can follow Amanda on Twitter @ThePandaBard, on Pinterest @ThePandaBard, or on Medium @ThePandaBard. You can also find her research on Academia.Edu at Cpp.Academia.Edu/MandaRiggle.
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