Show Up and Bare it All

On Writing

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When you look at a writer’s work, you can’t look at one piece and know the whole artist. One piece of work is just a bleep on the radar. Especially in today’s world. You can’t just look at one post, or one blog, or one short story, poem, whatever. You have to follow the artist. Follow them with the intent to understand where their work is coming from and for the most dedicated followers, where it is going. How is it evolving? How is the artist evolving?

We don’t know Leonardo da Vinci from just the Mona Lisa. We know him for his writing, his contraptions, his relationships with other artist and intellectuals of his time. We appreciate da Vinci for who he was entirely. Would he be so well admired if we didn’t know about him outside of his paintings?

All life is an experiment. The more experiments you make the better. ~Ralph Waldo Emerson

The point here is, show yourself. Show who your are outside of your art. You are not one painting, you’re an entire collection. You are more than one work of art. You’re a gallery. You are Picasso’s works before, during, and after his Blue period. That’s about 50,000 works.

Which also means, keep writing. You can’t stop at just one piece. You have thousands more to create and many more late nights ahead to fight against sleep. Every time you finish writing, a little piece of you changes. I’m not sure whether something is added or subtracted. I’m not even sure if it makes you more whole, but it adds to your collection and it makes you a little more whole to the viewer.

Bare it all

Showing up is great but you gotta do more than that. When you write, take the risk. Don’t be afraid to bare it all. You cannot take a snapshot worth keeping without baring some part of you that you hold sacred. Don’t worry about how people will react. Bare it in the most artistic way possible, then move on to your next work.

There’s going to be days when writing is an inconvenience, write anyway. There’s a million reasons to take the night off. It may seem like just one night away from writing, but it’s not. Writing everyday is proof you’re here and awake and fighting for something.

Writing can become your best friend, if you let it. There’s an intimacy in writing everyday that you can’t get from most relationships. It becomes your secret place and a place you can go where you’re allowed to be authentic. Writing can’t love you back but it sure can feel like it. Stay committed and you’ll be rewarded in a million priceless ways.

“Start writing, no matter what. The water does not flow until the faucet is turned on.”

— Louis L’Amour

Writing everyday keeps you in the flow. I feel, when I miss days of writing, it takes more time to get back into the story or into a place where I’m willing to share. It’s like anything else, once you step away, it can turn into days before you’re back in the flow again. When you’re in the flow, it doesn’t feel like it until you’re out of it again. Stay consistent. Write every day, even when you don’t feel like it.

“There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you.”

― Maya Angelou

If you stop writing, you leave things unsaid. You lock stories up inside you that could be shared with the world. Write it out. Write it down. It may not seem like an interesting story now, but I can promise you, there’s someone out there that will love it. You just have to find them. But write it first, worry about finding them later.

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Question for fiction writers

I’m what is called a pantser like Stephen King. I don’t outline the story ahead of time. But I do take time to stop and think or journal on where I’d like my characters to end up. Anyhow, my two characters, a woman and a man, are growing in separate places right now. The guy’s growth is far more interesting than the woman’s. In real life this normal since women mature at a younger age than men, but in writing is this ok? Should I find more balance? Should I be more deliberate about her growth? My only concern is that she will be unrealistic if I am too deliberate. Or am I over thinking and this is how characters grow in fiction.

Fiction writers, do you find this or do this intentionally. Like, give another character more spotlight? Maybe it’s her slow growth that makes him more interesting and vibrant? I’d love to hear your strategies.

Follow Up Bad Guys -On Writing

“Integrity without knowledge is weak and useless, and knowledge without integrity is dangerous and dreadful.” – Samuel Johnson (1709 – 1784), English Author, Poet, and Literary Critic and Writer

I had been thinking about the good guy vs the bad in a collection of short stories I’ve been working on, and I was reminded that in life no human is ever pure bad or pure good. What is most important when developing my characters is that I display my characters as their true selves. Whether they are good or bad doesn’t matter. As long as I display them as true as possible, they will make the choices themselves. The truth is we all teeter between being the good guy and the bad guy. And the gray area where we can’t seem to navigate is what makes us human.

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Bad Guys -On Writing

 

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I am Dorthy’s Defense Mechanism

Dorthey has to fight the villain inside her. She tries to stay focused on growth and not letting others bring her down. But sometimes she gets down, real down. She wants to drag her enemies to the depths of hell. Introduce them her friend, Death and fill their bellies with the greatest pleasures in life. She wants to leave them stranded and lonely waiting for someone to just. come. and. love. them. The place she was. The way she was. And sometimes she loses control and she stoops. She stoops and she feels like she’s let herself down every time she does. She never wants another human to feel the physical and emotional pain she’s gone through. But she clinches her fists and grits her teeth at times, praying for vengeance from above and below. Then she thinks, you know what, they may never realize the pain they caused. They may never take the time to learn their own soul. Their own magnificent inner being. Now that, is the true heartbreak. And that is when she reels herself back in and remembers that in another life, in another dimension, she made the same mistake. Even if it would have never been in this lifetime. That thought slacks her jaw and releases her shoulders. This is her growth. This is a snapshot inside a human mind attempting to grow from every circumstance. This is her truth.

Little purple person

Who are you when you’re

not looking,

when that sweat is dripping

from your brow

When your feet are up

on the couch.

Can you define yourself?

Not your hobbies

or your top responsibilities,

but who you are,

those spaces,

 between your out-right 

maddening choices?

“I’m a little purple person,” it whispered in my ear. “I run and frolick and think of the many ways I can return to you. It’s just a matter of getting to you.” It takes ten huge steps away from me, but since it’s so small it doesn’t get more then 3 inches from my face. It sits, crosses it’s legs, and faces me. “In between the spaces is space, my dear poet, it’s space to be filled with memories and love and if you even feel the need, hate.” The little purple person then lays down staring at my popcorn ceiling, and places two arms behind his head. “And if you must know, my dear poet, the space between my maddening choices is balance. Where the imagination runs wild because the madness isn’t present, but it was and it will be. Some call it peace, but I believe, my dear poet,” he faces me now, “it’s best left temporary. Because to grow we must change.” He goes silent and slowly closes his eyes. I study this tiny person. He must be no bigger than my thumb. I roll over and look at my popcorn ceiling. My eyes slowly close. That could be true, it could be true. 

 

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New Project, New England Authors

I’ve started compiling a list of Famous Writers from New England! 

Still working on the list. But this is what I have so far. I’m proud to be from New England and live where so many great writers have lived. Thought I’d make page to show off my home.

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