Feel free to hate it

My friends, I know there is no “Dislike” or “Hate” button, but please feel free to tell me exactly what you think of whatever I post. My intention in starting this blog was to open up discussion. I don’t seek praise, although I ummm like it. If I write something you don’t like I’d love it if you told me. Tell me why you don’t like it, please. I am sometimes reactionary, I am sometimes very rigid in my viewpoints. I look to the honesty of the people around me to help me grow- as a human being, as a writer, as a blogger. So, please, if I piss you off, tell me. If I write something that offends, tell me. If you want to show me an alternate view, then please, tell me. Dialogue. Education. Discourse. These are the things that help us become more civilized, and that is one of my personal aims. And thanks, for taking the time to read this. πŸ™‚


About theminstrelscitadel

In search of courageous souls who aren't afraid to dig a little deeper and have a conversation about all manner of things. Rant, rave, debate, discuss... let's do it!
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12 Responses to Feel free to hate it

  1. Philip Shiell says:

    I know what you’re saying. You’ve actually put my feelings into words – but I assume that “we” (us newbies) have to “blog” for a few months, get feedback from other people and give feedback to those people when they post something… we need to build up a kind of following, people we regularly talk to.

    To be honest, I’ve just got back into the swing of things after our holidays, and have to catch up on what people have been writing. Having written a couple of things in my spare time (I’ve uploaded the first part of a short story), I need to focus on other longer projects.

    I’ve read all of your work up to now. However, I must admit, when it comes to poetry, I’m out of my depth with analysis, etc. I don’t know if its only me (probably is, though!), but with poetry, I need some pointers as to the “hidden” artistic meaning. I need to give your poetry some thought.
    I’d be all to willing to give feedback, when I feel I’m on the right track with what you are heading for – I’m probably too tentative with this – I’m still new to this lark; moreover, I’m also a creative (a thick skinned one), and I know some people can be very “sensitive” to critique. So I’m careful with giving out criticism.

    In terms of what you’r doing, for me to be able to get into it fully, I’d need some background info as to what is motivating you; why have you chosen the particular subject; the choice of words, word combis, etc. In short I’d need some kind of “idiot proof” pointer, something like:

    “Dear reader, having just witnessed the most breathtaking sunset I’ve ever seen in my life, I fell into a contemplative mood, where I considered the nature of colour and the effects it has on our lives……..”

    I’m at home with music and stories. But I’m willing to learn.

    “Potestations of a worker bee” really caught my imagination, rang true about part of my past life and what had happened. It invoked me to answer you in the way I did. I’d personally like to see more like this, or even more darker, dystopian-type things.

    At the moment, though, I seem to be caught up in so many things that take my time away from this.

    If it’s any consolation, I even thought about putting one of your works to music! It seemed like good inspiration for a piece (I would have asked you, of course, and shared it with you); but like the antagonists from MOMO, someone is smoking my time away.

    Talk soon,


  2. theminstrelscitadel says:

    Hey, Phil. Your reply means a lot to me, truly. Thank you for your honesty- I value that above just about everything else in life. I’d like to address a few points you made.
    1) I get what you’re saying about a “following”. I doubt I will ever acquire a large one and I’m okay with that. I’m the kind of person that is tentative about parties because there are too many people talking all at once and being loud, competing for air space. One on one conversations that are interesting are always preferable for me, so just a small number of people reading my stuff will suffice.
    2) Grats on the holiday (jealous!) and to be sure I will check out your recent writings. Looking forward to that.
    3) When it comes to poetry I, too, am completely out of my depth. With my own poetry there’s no work involved because I wrote it and I know exactly what the hell I’m talking about. To read poetry by someone else can be a frustrating thing for me because I struggle to understand what they are referring to, what they are describing, etc. I leave the analysis of poems to the people who study such things- they know what they’re looking for, they have those fantastic brain cells that enable them to decipher what they read and make sense out of it. I liken the analysis of poetry a bit to interpreting dreams- in fact the similarities between poems and dreams is uncanny, in my view. It is the realm of metaphors, raw emotions, tricks of the mind and some wishful thinking occasionally. Poetry has to hit me in the gut in order for me to appreciate it fully. If it has to filter through the brain first then I’ve already lost the thread. To sum up: I feel ya!
    4) More things like “Protestations” are bound to show up- I just can’t help but vomit my annoyance every now and then. Forget being a squeaky wheel: I am the intercom system.
    5) I would be most honored were you to put some of my writing to music. Music is my first love, and always will be. I cannot play a single instrument (there’s a story there that I will spare you the telling of) but I’m convinced that I have musical notes instead of blood flowing through my veins. In fact, I have been pondering just how I could possibly write a poem that gives me the same transcendental feeling that good music does. If I ever get to write it I will most certainly NOT tell anyone that’s what it is just in case no one thinks it’s fantastic but me. In fact, I probably won’t post that one, just in case…
    6) My name is Tina. Nice to meet you. While I enjoy the Minstrel moniker, there comes a time when people want to know your name.Thanks again, Phil!

    • Philip Shiell says:

      Hi Tina,

      Nice to meet you too…

      Honesty is important. I agree.

      In regard to a “following”, I agree with you once again.
      Let me explain:
      When I started this, I didn’t really have any major plans about getting into conversations with people from around the world. On the contrary – and being being 100% honest with you now – I was actually just testing WordPress for our business, seeing if it could be part of our initial marketing mix.

      However, as I got into it – discovering the “outer limits” of this blogging universe, I realised there was a lot more: I saw it as a possible place to “expose” some of my own personal interests, such as writing and music.

      The first blogger I discovered was Stu in Arlington and his stories, which were based on his day-to-day experiences. Wow, I fell in love with his style. It seemed so relaxed, funny, and descriptive, so much so that I was drawn into his little worlds.
      I’ve mailed with him a couple of times, perhaps just to give him my “honest” feedback about what he is doing and that people around the world are enjoying his wanderings.

      This was a turning point for me, and I thought: wouldn’t it be nice just to have a few blogs you can go to now and then, find out what’s happening in his part of the world. This hadn’t really occurred to me before I started.
      So, having a small clutch of people who come back to read, listen, and enjoy is, in some way, rewarding…

      Phew (he says, wiping sweat away from his brow). I’m glad you wrote what you did. I thought I was going to get a roasting! At school, many years ago we had to learn “Keats” and the rest of his crew; we had to stand up and recite this stuff from memory, along with Shakespeare… I think our teacher planned for some of us to be the next Ian Mckellen. Here’s what we had to watch back then:

      In short, I should be in a position to know about all this!
      So, it looks like I need to get back into poetry.
      A friend in UK says it helps him with lyric writing. Let’s see.

      I also talked to the wife last night – as she was preparing cookies and other delicious delights for our daughters birthday today – and she said exactly the same: “poetry is from the individual; that particular person is expressing a nuance, and these nuances are sometimes very difficult to decipher…”

      I should never promise anything I can’t deliver; however, at band practice last night we all decided that the next six months would be spent writing new songs/grooves.
      I could imagine using some of your work as inspiration for songs. Unfortunately, we don’t have a singer, so lyrically we are dead in that particular region; however, the feeling can be brought across.
      I may even use an idea in one of my one compositions, if that’S OK.

      Anyway, I have to get back to working on updating our website today, so, with the weekend is on the horizon, I wish you a good one.

      Talk soon,


      • theminstrelscitadel says:

        What a wonderful performance by McKellen! Could never do it myself because I always sound better on the page than I do in RL… This performance so reminds me of Alan Rickman’s portrayal of Severus Snape. Brilliant! My education had literally nothing to do with poetry- I don’t recall ever reading a poem as required. Perhaps that is why I regard it as such a highly personal mode of communication; abstract and valued only by those whose hearts sing in that particular way as well.
        Stu in Arlington… would that be the Storyshucker, Stuart M.Perkins? I read his stuff, too. πŸ™‚ As for borrowing an idea for one of your own compositions, feel free. Glad to hear you’ll be working on new mucic. I’ve become an avid youtube viewer of Bantaba X. Great stuff!!

    • Philip Shiell says:

      I’ve been sending this to a couple of friends in the UK.
      They really liked it.
      Check it out.

      • theminstrelscitadel says:

        For some reason I was really enthralled with this piece. Very interesting, very clever, very well done! I am a complete noob when it comes to computer graphics and animation, but very impressed with the depth of emotion conveyed here. Excellent! Are you somehow associated with this? I checked the credits for your name… Or did you just stumble upon it? I really enjoyed it, and am glad you shared it. Thanks for that.

  3. h2dog says:

    Minstrel,….. everything you do is good.
    Because I like you.
    I’m a simple type. πŸ™‚

    And really, you do write some good stuff.
    Hope things are good.

    • You would think that after 2 years of blogging I would be able to find my way around WordPress but alas… I’m as lame as I ever was… I wanted to turn you onto this band I found on youtube, and this is the only way I can think of to do it! Since you’re signed up as an “email follower”, would it be alright if I just emailed you next time??
      Here’s the youtube link, enjoy!

  4. theminstrelscitadel says:

    htoooooooo! I’m a simple type, too. Noticed you posted some new things and am planning to drop by for a visit and some commentary later on. And yes, things aren’t too shabby. πŸ™‚ How about you?

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