Hey everyone I like the idea of this new sub-forum, so kudos to whoever was involved with creating it! I'm pretty positive I'm allowed to ask this here/it's the right spot; be gentle if it's not

So, I'm not very good at writing creatively in 'strict' forms such as sonnets (or even worse, Villanelles!). I remember spending about 8 hours working on one around christmas break for a class before totally giving up and writing a more free-verse type poem in about an hour that I was really happy with. I can come up with lots of lines and getting ideas into iambic pentameter isn't a big deal (I guess I mean a Shakespearean sonnet when I say sonnet), but writing a full sonnet that I'm happy with is seemingly impossible. All the rules and stuff sort of overwhelm me a bit, and I tend to think they can choke meaning out of a piece - or force you to say things that you wouldn't have otherwise (because the line just _has_ to rhyme with 'elephant' or something lol). And then sometimes I think that if I were a better writer this wouldn't be a problem, but I don't think that's what it is. And now I'm being verbose, sorry.

To get over my issue(s) with sonnets, should I 1. just write a somewhat silly one, just so I've written one, and then work my way up from there? Or 2. Really persevere on a serious one no matter how long it takes?

I think option 1 is better for many reasons, and not all poetry/prose has to be serious - something I often forget. I'd really love to hear anyone's thoughts on this and maybe suggestions as well. Thanks in advance

To see a World in a Grain of Sand
And a Heaven in a Wild Flower
Hold Infinity in the palm of your hand
And Eternity in an hour
I'd go with option 1, it helps develop a better vocabulary, since you'll constantly practice with new words. Also, it would help develop skills, so that when you do get to a more difficult or better sonnet, it just seems easier to write, since you have the skills.
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Yea, the more I think about it the more it seems like option 1 is actually learning how to do something and easing my way into it while option 2 is just forcing it and learning nothing and would just frustrate me. I guess it is a bit of a silly question, but typing it out like that helped to nail my ideas down a bit.

For some reason I can't stop taking your comment about developing a better vocabulary as a personal jab, but that makes no sense, and I know you didn't mean it like that. Damn the Internet and its inability to accurately convey emotion (sometimes) Anyway, thanks for the advice
To see a World in a Grain of Sand
And a Heaven in a Wild Flower
Hold Infinity in the palm of your hand
And Eternity in an hour
I'd say the problem with your sonnets is that you are getting so worked up about the rules that you are forgetting to write. Iambic pentametre is quite restricting, add that to rhyme scheme and all you will end up really wokred up about it. I recommend you try and write a poem following sonnet guidelines and then tweak it slightly.

Also in my opinion, sonnets are never any decent unless in spanish or italian. I have yet to read a sonnet that is impressive in English. Of course the spanish ones have less limitations...your choice. I'd number 2. For comic effect you need the slight leeway a sonnet doesn't give you.
Read. Read read read read read them. Loads of them. All of them. Anything you can find. Any sort, any style. Find books, find websites. Read and learn from them. Read then, then analyze them in your head, make notes, whilst keeping on writing and practicing them. Do both option one and two, don't limit yourself.
Good advice piles on good advice. Thanks everyone - I'll try it out I wrote a fun one last night about tea that turned out alright, so at least I've climbed that little hill.
To see a World in a Grain of Sand
And a Heaven in a Wild Flower
Hold Infinity in the palm of your hand
And Eternity in an hour
option one is like when you practice a hard riff or a new solo really slow before getting it down and speeding it up so don't be ashamed of writing a less serious or just plain funny piece.
Well first write a piece without the rhyme but keep the metre. Then write another piece on teh same subject without meter but with rhyme. Then combine the two taking the best parts from both.

Failing that you can just jump in head first. It's what I do.

Filth, pure filth... That's what you are.