September 29, 2022

Poetry power in The Worrier


This archived article was written by: Hailey Peyton Sellers

“…What do you want?
To get lost,
turn the map upside down,
be surprised…”
-’The Worrier: Failure’
~Nancy Takacs

Award-winning author and emeritus English and creative writing instructor Nancy Takacs discusses her new book about worrying. Originally from New Jersey, she lives in Carbon County with her husband Jan Minich. Her most recent book was recently published by University of Massachusetts winning the Juniper Prize for Poetry Contest. Her poetry masterpiece has been in the making for some time, she said.
“The first poem was written about six years ago, the book took a while to develop, it wasn’t written straight through. The poems came to me and, eventually they found their way into a book.” Takacs said. The book of poetry is titled “The Worrier.”
“The poems weren’t titled ’The Worrier’ at first. They weren’t titled anything… Each poem became titled ‘The Worrier’ with different subtitles. They seemed like they were “worrying topics.”
“As the poems became a whole book, I realized that the title “The Worrier” belonged on each one of them. The poems don’t worry in the usual sense, I usually think of worrying as something destructive. These poems simply wanted to find themselves to “lightness.”
“I think of worry beads. Things we question in our lives, sometimes we find surprising answers,” she explained. “These poems are in an unusual form. It embodies two parts of the self. A person who is asking is perhaps more demanding, and the self who answers is really intuitive.”
So many people today have hesitation to put their own thoughts on paper. Sometimes there is a fear of what others may think about what you have to say. Takacs’s advice about how to overcome the insecurities is to simply always write, even though at first, you don’t show anyone.
“Fear is something we all have with writing and the sooner we can get over it the better. It ‘s very common for people to be fearful of putting their words down. I guess in my case, I took a creative writing class. It encouraged me to keep writing on my own and to read other poets’ works. Reading gives you a connection to other accomplished writers which can boost your own confidence.”
It’s hard and scary to put yourself out there. But never let your own words be muted by the world’s noise.
“I think it’s really important to have a voice. And writing is a way we can have a voice. There are a lot of people who don’t like to speak in public, but you can keep a journal. My advice is to keep writing. Don’t lose your voice. You find your voice, as you write for yourself. Try to write with your own perceptions and observations. Always keep that voice and don’t ever let it go. You don’t want anyone to change that,” she says.
Not everyone sees things the same way. Writing can be something powerful and beautiful. Takacs wants people who read this book to remember to find self truth, in today’s world of loud opinions and questions.
She said, “I hope people will feel that they can trust their own intuition, and find their own answers. In their own writing, their own lives. It’s about self discovery amidst turmoil.”
Takacs will read from her book on May 2, at 6:30 p.m. at the Price City Public Library. Her book will be available to sign that evening.

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