Tag Archive: creativity

Your BEST project is always your next one

We abandon our children quickly. Quite quickly indeed. We conceive of them, nurture them, give birth to them, and set them out into the world … and then we turn our backs on them. It’s just one of those things we do. The project I’m always most excited about is the one I’m working on. The one I most want to talk about is the one still in the works. The best thing I’ve ever done? Still to come. Perpetually. Whatever I just did? Not that interested in it. Don’t really want to talk about it, usually don’t have much to say about it. I’m thinking of the NEXT thing. This is problematic, of course, because you’re supposed to promote your latest thing. You’re supposed…
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For 2016, a new short story every month

I’m blessed that writing (sort of)(barely) pays the bills. But one result of taking something you love and turning it into work is that it becomes an obligation rather than an escape. You HAVE to do that if you want to make a living from it, of course — I would have faltered years ago if I didn’t decide that I had to prioritize writing in the same way you do any other job — but you lose a little of what drew you to it in the first place. For me, it was the joy of playing with words; of creating people and situations out of whole cloth; and of looking at a page and saying, “Holy shit, I made that!” These days, I…
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Writing is like acting

Sometimes, two seemingly unrelated worlds have more in common than you realize. Consider the worlds of writing fiction and acting. To some extent, writing fiction is a lot like acting. When you’re writing fiction you’re also playing a role, or rather, many roles. Part of your job as a writer is to immerse yourself in these characters. To know them with a great degree of intimacy and, most importantly, to guide their actions in a way that feels natural and believable. You’re trying to convince your audience that these are real people facing real obstacles, not pawn’s in the author’s plot. So part of being good at writing convincing characters is the ability to be a good actor. You can’t just write yourself. You can’t…
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Art does not require pain; joy is worth celebrating

I’m not much for the whole posting quotes thing, but this quote from Ursula le Guin’s award-winning ‘Those Who Walked Away From Omelas,’ which can be read in full here, strikes me as worth sharing: “The trouble is that we have a bad habit, encouraged by pedants and sophisticates, of considering happiness as something rather stupid. Only pain is intellectual, only evil interesting. This is the treason of the artist: a refusal to admit the banality of evil and the terrible boredom of pain … But to praise despair is to condemn delight, to embrace violence is to lose hold of everything else. We have almost lost hold; we can no longer describe happy man, nor make any celebration of joy.” In the world of…
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