This past Christmas, my boyfriend got me an assortment of lovely gifts including all four of Michael Faudet's books. For those of you who don't know, Michael Faudet is a poet, and he's one of my poetry inspirations and part of the reason I got into poetry. I read excerpts of his book Bitter Sweet Love upon my discovery of his work, but Dirty Pretty Things was the first work of his that I read in full.
First off, I love the titles of his books. They're unique and captivating. I don't know the page numbers of the books off the top of my head, but I think Dirty Pretty Things is the biggest book (at least it appears to be to me). Faudet's poetry is real, emotional, happy, sad, and raw. I've read pieces that have made want to cry and others that have inspired me. A significant amount of his poems and stories from my observation are erotic or have erotic elements, so the writing seems to be geared towards a more mature audience. If that sort of thing is not your taste then I would not recommend his books, but if you don't mind that sort of writing, then I highly suggest reading his works as his poetry is beautiful and different and is some of the best I've read next to Rupi Kaur's (and apart from my own *wink*).
I hope you enjoyed this post and/or that it helped or inspired you in some way.
Thank you for reading,
R'Nelle CyRe' Collins
Writing is fun and liberating, but it can also be hard and scary. I've had many different talents and aspirations throughout my life so far, and that in itself is fun and scary. It's fun being inspired and feeling free, but it's scary when you don't know where to go or what to do next or if you're doing the right thing. I'm not sure entirely why I'm writing this post, but I feel inspired to, so here it is.
I write about various topics and have works that have not yet been completed or shared, but my first published work was my poetry book Perfume on the Radio. That book was and is my work of art and one of the most personal things I've ever shared.
I love poetry because it's freeing. It's exciting, it's raw, and it's real. It hurts, and it heals. As much as I love poetry, it can be hard writing it, but the thought of sharing it is even harder as it's so real. Online and in person I give advice and show the best version of me, but poetry isn't that. I give advice, but I also share how I'm lost or confused and show the best and not so great parts of me. But even the not so great parts of me are great because they're me.
Poetry is hard to write as I'm sharing what I'm feeling and thinking. It's where I share the stories I've never told or the feelings that I keep to myself. It's where I expose my fears and share my joys. The poetry I'm writing now (and that hasn't been shared . . . yet) is even more vulnerable than my first book. This poetry is different as it's me dipping my foot deeper into the water, sharing more of my feelings, sharing new feelings I'm feeling and more. The poetry I'm writing now has inspired me to write about other things and has shown me that I don't have to be limited to one genre, talent, passion, etc..
Everybody has an opinion, and everyone has advice for your life. If you don't get anything else from this post, I want you to know that you don't have to limit yourself. Embrace whatever talents or passions speak to you. If you want to sing, sing. If you want to dance, then dance. Even if you just start by doing it in your room. But don't keep yourself boxed in based on what you think you should be doing, and don't go after anything you don't want to to keep up with an image or to be what someone else wants you to be. So often we strive to be things we're not or to achieve certain goals that aren't ours so that people are proud of us and think we're doing good enough, but you're good enough as you are. Dream and explore, but be you, and enjoy your life. Go after your goals, but spend the day on the beach or curled up watching movies. Brainstorm and create, but spend time with people you love and do what makes you happy.
I hope you enjoyed this post and/or that it helped you in some way. If you've got any questions/blog post requests, etc., send me an email through my contact page.
R'Nelle CyRe' Collins
You may or may not know this, but at the end of May, I published my very first book. This post is composed of seven reasons why you should buy it.
1) It's self published.
I published Perfume on the Radio (my first book), all by myself. I wrote it, did the cover design, etc.. I'm listed as the publisher, and had complete creative control over everything.
2) It has pictures.
My first book is filled with illustrations that I drew myself with a pencil, sketch pens, and a sketch pad. The drawings are so crucial as art is apart of everything I do, and the drawings help tell my story. The drawings almost didn't happen as I thought I'd have to cut them out to proceed with production which is why they are extra special.
3) It almost didn't happen.
Because Perfume on the Radio was my first book, I learned everything to do with production, publishing, etc., along the way. Throughout my writing, things progressed smoothly, but right when I was about to publish, I hit a series of roadblocks. Every time I conquered one, another one arose. It got so intense that I considered giving up as I couldn't see how my book would come true. I kept going anyway, and I can honestly say that my book is a million times better than it would've been because of the barriers.
4) It's great for various ages.
My book is not a children's book in any way, but it's been read by readers in their teens to individuals all the way up to 60+, so it's great for (almost) everyone.
5) It's small.
My first book is 5x8 inches, and it's a quick read under 200 pages. Most of my drawings take up a full page, so there really isn't a lot of text. There's enough text, but not too much, so you can get through it pretty quickly. I've talked to quite a few readers who have finished it in under a day. I have as well. It's also paperback and lightweight, so it's easy to carry with you.
6) It's inspiring.
Part of me feels weird saying that my own book is inspiring, but the other part of me doesn't. If anything, it's inspired me. It's shown me that anything is possible, and that dreams do come true. I'd need a specific post to really go into this point, but I'm not sure if I'll do that for various reasons. Nonetheless, there's (most likely) a piece in my book that will resonate with you.
7) I wrote it for you.
I wrote this book for me, but I wrote it for you too. I wanted to reflect on things in my life, and I wanted to share my reflections and experiences with those who were interested. I wanted to share these things to share:
happiness I'd experienced (to show that there's plenty for everyone)
sadness I'd experienced (to show that we all go through it and to help others see that it isn't forever)
my wisdoms (to share knowledge)
my hopes and beliefs and inspirations (to make room for positivity and dreams and to provide
resources to help you believe in what you want for your life.)
It's for me, but it's for you too.
Thank you so much for taking the time to read this post. If you've already purchased Perfume on the Radio, thank you so much. Thank you thank you thank you thank you thank you. If you haven't but want to, you can get it here. Thank you too. Also, if you ever have any blog requests, don't hesitate to reach out.
R'Nelle CyRe' Collins
On May 30th of this year, I published my very first book. You may know about it or you may not, but for a while I've wanted to do a post on it going in depth on why I wrote it, what it's about, what it means to me, and more. If you want to know all about it, then keep reading
I moved to Atlanta last year on Father's Day. It was a bittersweet day as I was embarking on my journey as an adult as well as remembering the fact that I lost my dad when I was four. I moved into my sister's one bedroom apartment with her, and shortly after we upgraded to a two bedroom apartment that we share now.
When I moved in with my sister, I slept in the dining room on an air mattress and kept my clothes in a travel closet that I set up in her room. I didn't really have my own space, and it was hard to deal with at times. I didn't really know anyone at the time in Atlanta other than family and it took me a month to get a job, so I spent a lot of my time by myself. During my alone time, I worked on learning the city, and I discovered poetry.
Right before I moved, Milk and Honey by Rupi Kaur found me at the bookstore. I say it found me because I'd heard of the book a lot before I got my hands on it, and I originally had no intention of reading it. I found it misplaced at the bookstore one day and decided to give it a look. I was going through a really tough time when I found it, and the poetry in that book was exactly what I needed. I found refuge in it and poetry as a whole, and I'd make trips to the bookstore to read works by Michael Faudet, R.H. Sin, and others. During my first month in Atlanta, I decided that I wanted to write a poetry book reflecting on my experiences over the course of a year, which is what my debut book is all about. I also wanted the book to be an avenue for me to share things that I haven't really shared before including different moments in my life and feelings I've felt, so there are quite a few pieces in this book reflecting on elements and experiences before my move as well.
When I was writing Perfume on the Radio, everything seemed to have a proper place. I wrote about things from the past and things as they happened. I also wanted to see within a year's time how I and my life had changed.
I haven't promoted my first book as much as I initially intended as I've been really busy and it's a lot of work promoting your own book. I also have changed so much since then and though there's a lot in this book I still resonate with, there are a few things that I don't. Mainly what has changed is that the things that bothered me in the past that I felt the need to write about don't bother me anymore. A few of my opinions have changed as well. Nonetheless, the work as a whole is important to me as it's my first book and it has shown me that things can change instantly and that dreams do come true.
Milk and Honey also inspired me with my own book to include drawings. Every drawing in Perfume on the Radio was hand drawn by me, scanned, and inserted into my book. I've been drawing since I could write, so to have a way to include my drawings was/is very special.
There's so much more I could write about Perfume on the Radio, but this is what I have to share with you all. Also, everyone's feedback on the book so far has been different and insightful, and I want to keep room for that.
Thank you for reading,
If you're interested in checking out Perfume on the Radio, you can get your copy here. Also check out the Facebook page for more pieces from the book, comments, and more.
R'Nelle CyRe' Collins
One of the many unique and fun ways to express yourself is through a tattoo. Tattoos are not for everyone, but if you find yourself wanting one, you're in for an adventure.
If you don't have any tattoos, deciding on your first one can be an exciting, liberating, and potentially challenging experience. I currently have three, and choosing each one involved a lot of thought. The main thing to remember (and probably the most obvious thing) is that tattoos are permanent. Even if you like your potential tattoo, ask yourself if it's something you'll like twenty years later. It's unlikely that you can pinpoint what your preferences will be twenty years in advance, but chances are if you think you won't like your tattoo years down the line, you're probably right. On the other hand, if the tattoo you have in mind is something that has personal meaning/significance or if it's something you really like and think you'll still like down the line, then it may be the one to go with.
Before I get into brainstorming ideas for tattoos/how I chose mine, I want to bring to attention a few things to keep in mind when choosing your first tattoo. First, think about what size you want your tattoo to be. Some tattoo parlors price tattoos by size, some price by detail of the tattoo, some do a combination of both, etc.. You'll want to have an idea on what size you want your tattoo to be as this aspect will factor in to the overall pricing. The size of your tattoo also matters as it will help you get a better visual of what it'll look like on your body and help you decide where on your body to get it. If you already have a place in mind you'd like your tattoo to be, deciding how big you want it to be will allow you to decide if the spot you've chosen is the right spot for it or if it'd be better in a different position or space.
Where you want your tattoo to be is also a good thing to brainstorm for other reasons as well. For example, if your career falls in the corporate arena, a tattoo on your hand may not be the most feasible as it'll be easily visible and hard to cover. One on your hip or somewhere more discreet may be a better option as you can show it when you'd like and easily cover it when needed. I got my first tattoo a month after I turned seventeen and was in private school at the time, so I got it on my wrist to show it if I wanted to but to be able to cover it if I wanted to/if it was necessary.
Weight loss and weight gain can also alter the look of a tattoo, so when picking a place, try to choose a spot that'll look the same/keep it's shape for years to come.
Now for the fun part: choosing your tattoo
My first tattoo was inspired by Rihanna. I used to be a fan of hers as an adolescent, and she has a trail of stars tattoo that made me want a similar design when I got older. I remember being a little kid and drawing little stars on myself as inspiration.
The passion for stars stayed with me years later which is how I knew getting a star/stars tattoo would be perfect for me. Stars are associated with success, so I decided that my star tattoo would inspire me to achieve my dreams, and that it would mean "achieving my dreams". At first I thought I wanted to get three stars, but my mom suggested I get five as five stars are associated with the best/highest ranking/level for a given thing. I've been drawing since I could write, so I drew my five starts and took them to my tattoo artist who printed a stencil of my drawing and tattooed it on me.
At this moment in time, I have two other tattoos; the second one I got won't be discussed in this post. The third one I got is a scorpion because I'm a Scorpio, so a fun tattoo idea is to get your zodiac sign if you're into that sort of thing. A tattoo I haven't gotten but thought I wanted was a diamond heart. "Diamond Heart" is a song by Lady Gaga that I used to love, so I thought it would be cute to get a diamond in the shape of a heart tattooed on my arm. I'm over it now, but I still think it was a cute idea.
I don't know if I'll get another tattoo, but I do know that if I expand my tattoo collection, I want them all on the right side of my body as my first three are on the right side. My favorite animals are white tigers, so I thought it would be cool to get the face of a tiger tattooed on the back of my right hand. This is another debatable tattoo idea of mine as the more I think about it the more painful it seems. Nonetheless, I still think it's a fun idea. Getting your favorite or spirit animal could also be a potential first tattoo choice.
Some other ideas I like are song titles/lyrics, places, symbols, and characters. There are endless possibilities.
Whether you choose a tattoo from the designs at a tattoo parlor or come up with something unique to you, choose something that you'll be happy with and that you'll love to look at, show off, or have as a reminder.
I hope this post gave you an idea/ideas or provided some insight.
Thank you for reading,
R'Nelle CyRe' Collins