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Tag Archives: writing

Your Other Life, Waiting

If I now write, in the cafés of Paris, The Seamstress and the Wind, as I have proposed, it’s only to accelerate the process. What process? A process with no name, or form, or content. Or results. If it helps me survive, it’s only the way some little riddle would have. I think that for […]

Observe Changes in the Flask

First: He should be discreet and silent, revealing to no one the result of his operations. Second: He should reside in an isolated house in an isolated position. Third: He should choose his days and hours for labour with discretion. Fourth: He should have patience, diligence, and perseverance. Fifth: He should perform according to fixed […]

Lenses on the Non-Human World

The contemporary cynic – which on many days describes myself – might respond that we still live by all of these [historical] interpretive frameworks, and that only their outer shell has changed – the mythological has become the stuff of the culture industries, spinning out big-budget, computer-generated films and merchandise; the theological has diffused into […]

The Most Unheard-of Solution

“Every human being has, I believe, at times given room to the idea of creating a world himself. The Pope, in a flattering way, encouraged these thoughts in me when I was a young man. I reflected then that I might, had I been given omnipotence and a free hand, have made a fine world. […]

Still Another Device

There’s not too fine a distinction between humor and tragedy; even tragedy is in a way walking a tightrope between the ridiculous, between the bizarre and the terrible. Possibly the writer uses humor as a tool; he’s still trying to write about people, to write about man, about the human heart in some moving way, […]

Apply to the Clarion Workshop, 2010

Today is your last day to apply for the Clarion Workshop. If you write short stories, apply. I haven’t written about the workshop much (at least on here—in private correspondence I’ve written extensively) but since I attended last year, in the summer of 2009, I’ve grown as a reader, writer, critic, observer, tactician, &c. My […]

On the Subject of Retaining Ideas

So this post by Warren Ellis (who is a comics et al writer I enjoy very much, both for his stories and his howling pursuit of the future) about a writer’s equipment started me thinking about my own kit, and what tools I could try. This is a rambling post about minutiae, and will bore […]

Risk In Writing

Damien G. Walter wrote this call-out post asking for suggestions of currently working writers who are bold, who experiment, and who risk themselves. Somebody help him out; I want to know too. I’ve been thinking about risk in literature lately—mostly in the context of wanting not to retread smooth ground—but I run into the same […]

You Are All The Hours And None

tiger the color of light, brown deer on the outskirts of night, girl glimpsed leaning over green balconies of rain, adolescent incalculable face, I’ve forgotten your name, Melusina, Laura, Isabel, Persephone, Mary, your face is all the faces and none, you are all the hours and none… — Octavio Paz, Piedra de Sol (I found […]

In Which We Goad Ourselves Onward

When you undertake to make a work of art—a novel or a clay pot—you’re not competing against anybody, except yourself and God. Can I do it better this time? — Ursula K Le Guin, from her essay The Stone Ax and the Muskoxen, collected in The Language of the Night.