Archive for the 'Writing' Category

WRITING IS HARD, BUT IT IS JOYOUS…

February 14th, 2017

MANAGER YOUR TIME BY MANAGING YOUR ENERGY…

February 14th, 2017

Occasionally I find a post—rather than a comic—from Scott Adams worth repeating. This post on managing energy to manage time resonates with all the reading I’ve been doing from Cal Newport since I finished his Deep Work last year. The key challenge to the strategy is that most people do are not self-employed and able […]

A GOOD DAY IS ONE WHERE YOU WAKE UP…

February 4th, 2017

I’m fond of suggesting that any day you wake up is a good day. The rest is all gravy. John Burnside, writing in Writing is what I steal from the usual flow of things for The Guardian’s My Writing Day series takes a similar line’ In the final analysis, that probably says it all: a […]

NAYMIK MAKES JACKSON APPEAR ABOVE IT ALL

February 3rd, 2017

It looks as if the Plain Dealer wants to start a bandwagon effect for the re-election of sub-par mayor Frank Jackson. He’s a man who has overstayed his welcome. My opinion. Columnist Mark Naymik in a piece today—Mayor Frank Jackson can’t be a reluctant candidate if he wants to win fourth-term—made it appear that Jackson […]

TIME TO SHOVEL OUT THE BLOGPILE…

February 2nd, 2017

Great Expectations by Charles Dickens All You Need is Less says goodbye: the best comments from a year of columns Naval Academy reinstates celestial navigation TPP Isn’t About Free Trade — It’s About Protecting Corporate Profits Details of Dallas gunman’s larger plans emerge after protests around the US Gay Talese: ‘Most journalists are voyeurs. Of […]

THANK YOU, THANK YOU, PRESIDENT TRUMP…

January 28th, 2017

Not since President Richard Milhous Nixon has an American president so energized my first profession: Journalism. In the aftermath of Watergate, journalism schools across the country saw an uptick in enrollments that carried forward for a good 10 years cumulating, perhaps, in the expansion of schools under the Scripps Howard banner like my own alma […]

WE HAVE LEFT THE TRUTHINESS ZONE…

January 26th, 2017

No wonder sales of George Orwell’s 1948 dystopian classic 1984 have, in 21st century terms, gone viral. Yesterday over morning tea I had just this conversation that Richard Wolfe suggests in Trump’s lies are delusional. But the dangers they pose are now very real. For The Guardian, Wolfe writes: Let us count the ways Donald […]

WRITERS ARE WAKED BY OUR CREATIVE MINDS…

January 14th, 2017

There is something magical and damning about the moment when I slip over the edge and tumble into sleep. The magical part is the sweetness of the images that slide past in the fall. The damning part is the frantic need to scramble for a handhold like Kirk or Scotty, so that I can quickly […]

…MUST DISAPPOINTMENT ALL I ENDEAVOUR END…?

January 14th, 2017

Early in my blog days I used to post quite a bit of poetry, not so much anymore. That’s unfortunate. I came across this poem this morning in a reference by Tessa Hadley. While I don’t hold to Hopkins’ theist sentiment, the poem still moves me as a writer. Enjoy. Thou art indeed just, Lord, […]

DON’T MISTAKE THE DEEP STATE FOR A FRIEND…

January 12th, 2017

[Update @ 0610: The Guardian identifies the anonymous behind the story in Trump dossier: Christopher Steele, ex-MI6 officer, named as author ] [Update @ 0532: I would also like to add a note on the perverted sex acts alleged in the Trump Dossier. The use of the word perverted is a dangerous word because once […]

FAIR AND BALANCED?, WE THE PEOPLE DECIDE…

January 11th, 2017

[Update @ 0853: I’m taking a break—I have to get to work—but I’m noticing clues that this was written by someone for whom English is not a first language. What I’m noticing is that quite a few articles (a, an, the) are missing. Russian, for one example, does not have articles and this caused some […]

STEP 1: WRITE… STEP 2: IGNORE THE NEXT STEP…

January 7th, 2017

All books are a journey and, like Lau Tzu’s proverbial journey, all books begin with a first word, whether the word is call, it, whether, someone, once or any one of the other millions of beginnings since some long forgotten bard penned hwæt to begin the saga of Beowulf, books are just one damn word […]

LIMITATIONS AND BOUNDARIES ARE LIBERATING…

January 7th, 2017

I think that if my possibilities are limitless then I’m less likely to do what I want to do: if I can do anything, then I’m likely to do nothing. One example I sometimes use with my students is to suggest that when writing poetry, constraints—certain meters or form such as the Sonnet or the […]

THIS MAY BE THE BEST DEFINITION OF ART I KNOW…

January 1st, 2017

The Socrates Café I moderated for a number of years once spent an evening discussing the differences among craft, art and Art. We did not arrive at an answer—we almost never did—but the discussion was enjoyable. I think that Georges Simenon arrived at a definition that could have added much to our discussion. The Paris […]

SEE ALL, HEAR ALL, WRITE ALL…

December 24th, 2016

Only the rarest of writers can write without being in the world. Yes, we write from inside our heads, but we must be constantly refilling the cranial reservoirs with bits and pieces of the world we live in—we must always be in the moment. Michael Bond, writing this week’s My Writing Day for The Guardian, […]

AH, THE PERFECT JOY OF LEARNING…

December 17th, 2016

I get a bit of a bump when I read a some writing wisdom that I haven’t heard before. That’s what happened when I read this advice about removing scaffolding (those words necessary for the building of a story, but no longer needed when the story is finished) from one’s writing. I like how the […]

WORK, WORK, WORK, WORK, WORK, SUCCESS…

December 16th, 2016

Cal Newport hammers at this concept—what matters is doing the work, lots and lots of the work—again and again. There can be no magic formula or genie in the bottle that can ever substitute for doing the work. Oliver Burkeman—back from maternity leave (congratulations Mr. and Mrs. Burkeman)—writing in Are you too old to find […]

BOOKS AS FESTERING WOUNDS TO BE LANCED…

December 11th, 2016

One of the aspects of The Guardian’s My Writing Day series that I appreciate most is that some writers, like Sarah Perry, are honest about being horrible unproductive, of procrastinating, of flat out fucking off instead of writing. Writers need to know that we’re not all writing dynamos like Stephen King or Joyce Carol Oates […]

MAKING TROUBLED SLEEP WORK FOR YOU…

December 7th, 2016

While the past year has been dominated by the lead up to the November elections, a more personal focus has held my attention: getting enough sleep. In the past I’ve always been a sound sleeper, but in recent years (driven, perhaps, in no small part by my aging) (I’ve struggled to get even six hours […]

AGAIN WITH THE RUSSIANS… YOU CAN’T ESCAPE…

December 7th, 2016

Novelists, at least in the first 11 installments of the The Paris Review’s Art Of Fiction interviews, love the Russians. I feel like I need to buy a bottle of vodka and a loaf of black bread (how we used to celebrate surviving one of Dr. David Williams test on, what was then, The Soviet […]

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