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The Night Owl Poet News

Welcome to the Night Owl News, the poet has been busy! Here we are at just over a year from when I first started to show my work on my website and on Flickr. So I thought I would do a little catch up with you to tell you all what I have been doing behind the scenes. And in a way it also helps me take some time to draw breath a bit!

I have been so busy over the past year consolidating myself on my website and my photo stream on Flickr, trying to get my work seen, and to see if anybody was going to respond to it. Because when I started I had no idea what was going to happen, or indeed, if it would make people metaphorically run for the hills.

It has been a slow build, but on reflection, that has been good for me. My viewing figures on Flickr at the time of writing, are now over 223,600 views on only 243 photos. Not all of these have poems attached to the images but the bigger percentage on my photo stream does. The daily figures seem to be going up steadily day by day, and I am glad and very fortunate to be able to say that this is the case. On my website the visitors average at about 2 or 3 a day, sometimes more, sometimes less. They are from all over the world. But the important thing for me here is, that a strong percentage of those views are returning visitors; so they are coming back for another read.

A slower recognition has given me time to get used to the idea that people are engaging with my work. Something I have never really experienced before.

Those of you who I have got to know over the past year are well aware that I tend to work in the small hours. I just love that quiet stillness, surrounded by the darkness of the night. I work up in my attic space, and although I had a tidy up and a re-sort recently it is still the home of a hoarder! As you can see!

The Ideas Factory

But it is here that the main writing work is done, my own personal Ideas Factory. There are other places around my home where I might perch and pen a few ideas down, but it is in my den upstairs where I find I am at my most productive.

For the past two months I have been working hard to catch up with producing printed versions of the first images and poems I put up on Flickr. I always intended to go back over these and complete them to a more finished piece of work. These then go into my own personal portfolios as the original piece of work. Because my work entails a marriage of an image and a poem, it is important to me that the relationship between the two is designed to enhance this fact. Then I print them out as high quality prints.

As Close As I Can Get...

For a lot of these early poems and images, when I first put them up on Flickr, I was working so fast to just get myself on there, after months of prevarication. I wanted there to be some sort of consistency, both on Flickr and my website, so it was recognisably me. I decided to launch a website because I wanted a space where I could design the work to be as close to my original final piece as I could. Flickr is brilliant, but not flexible enough to allow this connection of poetry and image working together visually to be shown as I wanted it. So I knew I would want to go back and complete these early efforts on Flickr to a standard that I was happy with, as some of these works only had one or two verses to go with the image. That task is now done, and gradually I will be showcasing some of these on the website, as they have taken on a new life, and new meaning as a completed poem.

It also means that at last I can now move on to some new projects feeling a sense of achievement at completing my work up to date. It is time I went out with my camera again to experience some new locations and catch up with some of my favourite haunts...

When these works are designed and printed they get laid out over any spare surface including the floor, to dry for 24 hours. What you see here is only a section of it. Over the course of these two months I have designed and printed out over 50 pieces of work on A4 matte paper. Added to this I print out some of the images that I am fond of or feel that they would work well as standalone full A4 print, predominantly on glossy paper. When I have time I will mount these up to go in my A3 portfolio.

It has always been so important to me to have a real, physical, original print of my work. And in the future, if funds allow and the interest grows, I would like to have my work printed out in book form. Because of my enduring love of books, and where I learnt about photography, and where my love of poetry grew, this would be a natural progression for me.

If I were to do this, I would want it to be special, and would endeavour to have my work presented in a good quality hard backed book. I would want to work closely with the publisher, to see that my designs for my work would match as closely as we could with what appears in the book. This has always been a dream of mine. Perhaps it will come true one day.

I often sit in my attic just reading. There are books all over my house, but this is where I can sit and concentrate. I can pull out a book and leave it there with all my notes and return to it when I wish to. You never know where inspiration might come from.

Sharing Ideas, Sharing Thoughts; Please Leave A Comment

The other news that this Blog Post brings is that I have now been able to allow Guest Commenting on my Blog Posts. It is brilliant that has now organised it and introduced this feature to people's Blog's. Previously, people had to sign in to comment on a person's Blog Post, and that is not always convenient for everybody, as some people do not wish to commit their details in that way.

But now you can comment as a Guest, and of course, that would be lovely. What I am hoping to do now is generate more work where I will discuss the poem, image and the inspirations that led to its creation in my Blog Posts. And in turn, I hope people will find that this is a good springboard for discussion, or just to tell me they liked it or whether it provoked any other emotions. Or, any other poems they wish to talk about on my website or on my photo stream on Flickr.

The journey for me so far in the past year has been a roller-coaster of work and emotions, the response from people and the friendships I have made have been so wonderful, I cannot thank you enough. Long may the journey continue and I am looking forward to sharing more of my work with you!

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John Hewitt
John Hewitt
02 de nov. de 2022

Back again. I could spend hours looking through your book collection alone Shelley. I'm sure we share many volumes because of our similar interest. I think I can just make out a map of Narnia too. But I love the ambience of the whole attic and know why it inspires you. I'm sure the time will come when the dream of your book eventuates. I'll be the first to purchase a copy.

Shell's Blog
Shell's Blog
03 de nov. de 2022
Respondendo a

Hello John,

You might have to stay a while...there are books all over the house...but I think you are right, we most certainly share volumes I'm sure! Did you spot the book, "A Year With Aslan", a wonderful collection of excerpts, one for each day of the year, selected from the Narnia Books. It is so thought provoking to just read one passage a day, as it enables you to really contemplate it and its message. I have found it to be a very useful tool to concentrate my mind. If my dream ever comes true, one of those books will certainly have your name in it! Thank you, so much, for your support.


John Hewitt
John Hewitt
26 de ago. de 2022

Absolutely extraordinary insight into your workspace Shelley. As a lover of books that attic study is a sight to behold. I can see you have been extremely busy compiling and ordering your literary and artistic works. Wonderful.

Shell's Blog
Shell's Blog
26 de ago. de 2022
Respondendo a

I think the attic space was one of the reasons we wanted this house.....[that and the substantial shed for my husband] ! But seriously, this space is special. Thank you for your lovely comment. I'll keep busy!


21 de ago. de 2022

The work looks amazing! Love the attic!


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