The Reader

Whenever I tell someone I’m a writer, and they show genuine interest towards my “profession,” I end up telling them about all the cool e-mails I get from people. Or about the reviews my books get. Or this or that comment.

You know, there are good days and bad days. There are days when you don’t feel like writing, or days that you simply don’t want to write. But your readers are what’s most important, what keeps you going, what makes you feel like a writer even during those bad days. Continue reading “The Reader”

Stephen King’s 10 Best Tips for Becoming a Phenomenal Writer

The King has always been the sort of writer who can release one bestseller after another. He has sold more than 350 million copies of his works.

Wouldn’t that be nice? To be able to sell that many books? To be that productive?

Well, in 2002 King temporarily gave up on writing horror novels, and wrote a little book chronicling his rise to fame and discussing exactly what he believes it takes to become a good writer. Since then, it’s become the most popular book about writing ever written, which is understandable.

On Writing is not only about the basics of writing, and something that you should approach as a craft, but also a passion. Other writing books are focused on the mechanics of the written word, while King shows you how to capture the joy of the craft.

Yes, this little book will make you want to write, not for fame or fortune, but because it’s fun, and there’s nothing else you would rather do.

If I could recommend only one book to aspiring writers, On Writing would be it. But don’t take my word for it. Below, I’ve compiled a list of his best advice from the book, and I also wrote down some of my own thoughts on exactly how they apply to aspiring writers.

Continue reading “Stephen King’s 10 Best Tips for Becoming a Phenomenal Writer”

Art is Freedom

what2

“The blank page is yours. Cast aside worries over art and criticism. Imagine a land without rules. Imagine that nobody has ever told you that you cannot or should not do this thing. Those people were wrong.” Chuck Wendig

You know what’s the one thing I find to be equally fascinating and terrifying?

A blank page.

It’s the most terrifying thing… because that page doesn’t care who you are or what you wrote before sitting down at the desk, doesn’t care how many people are waiting to read your words… it just stays empty until you write something. Continue reading “Art is Freedom”

The Perks of Being a Writer

When I tell people I’m a writer they usually ask me how much I earn. I usually smile and say “enough.” I’ve been giving this answer even before I started earning money, when my stories were available for free on Wattpad.

The thing is that being a writer, or any other kind of artist, also means that most probably you’ll never earn a lot of money. Million dollar advances are extremely rare. Besides, I’m quite sure that most artists aren’t in this for money.

But what exactly do you earn if not money? Is there something else to being a writer?

Continue reading “The Perks of Being a Writer”

Unreliable Narrators

From Dostoyevsky’s unnamed narrator in Notes from Underground to Nabokov’s Humbert Humbert in Lolita, the unreliable narrator is one of the greatest additions to modern literature. It’s difficult to properly categorize a narrator as being unreliable. That certain narrator not only does he not tell the truth, but he withholds information on purpose, and at the same time is taunting the reader to see through his facade, to find the truth.

Continue reading “Unreliable Narrators”

Metafiction

“We’re all searching for something in our art. There are questions, and we always feel close to finding the answers, but we never do.

Artists never create art for what they might find. Some want to free themselves from nightmares, others want to inspire, or raise questions, or make people understand the world around them. Some want to entertain, others want to get rich, but it seems to me that no matter our reason for choosing to become artists, we all find more happiness in the stories or paintings or songs we create than we find in the real world. This is the sad truth: artists choose to live with one eye always closed to the world, the here and the now, and use that awareness to see what others can’t.

Inside the artist’s soul there is always a part that feels no remorse or fear when it comes to all that is dark in human nature. It seems to me that a part of the artist’s soul gets damaged to such an extent that it grows impervious to pain, heat, or cold. Like a scar.” Continue reading “Metafiction”

Book Review: The Last Tycoon by F. Scott Fitzgerald

From the book’s description:

Unfinished at the time of his death, F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Last Tycoon is a story of doomed love set against the extravagance of America’s booming film industry. The studio lot looks like ‘thirty acres of fairyland’ the night that a mysterious woman stands and smiles at Monroe Stahr, the last of the great Hollywood princes. Enchanted by one another, they begin a passionate but hopeless love affair, starting with a fast-moving seduction as slick as a scene from one of Stahr’s pictures. The romance unfolds, frame by frame, watched by Cecilia, a thoroughly modern girl who has taken her lessons in sentiment and cynicism from all the movies she has seen. Her buoyant humor and satirical eye perfectly complement Fitzgerald’s panorama of Hollywood at its most lavish and bewitching.

If the great Francis Scott Fitzgerald would have finished writing this novel, it would have been his masterpiece. Yes, it would have been better than The Great Gatsby, which is my favorite novel of all time, and the only piece of writing I’ve been reading once a year since I was seventeen. Besides Dune. Continue reading “Book Review: The Last Tycoon by F. Scott Fitzgerald”

Book Review: Hyperion by Dan Simmons

One word review: Wow!

Ever so often it happens that I get to suspend disbelief and immerse myself in such a brilliantly constructed fictional universe that it feels like a dream I’d never want to end.

Yes. I did not want to wake up from this.

I’m still book hangover. I am currently reading the sequel.

Hyperion by Dan Simmons is a brilliant SF novel. The world is complex, intriguing, and believable. It tells of certain aspects of humanity that should/could be enhanced as we develop our technology.

This is also a great novel in terms of storytelling. The writing does its job. Each character has its own way of describing events, certain motivations and dreams and hopes and aspirations. Continue reading “Book Review: Hyperion by Dan Simmons”

Almost…

“Art is never finished, only abandoned.” Leonardo da Vinci

Lately I’ve been considering the fact that I should/could edit all my previous releases. Lucky me, I’ve got plenty of other projects to keep me busy, so I can postpone this idea and overthink it until it becomes terrible.

But, if I were to read my books again, years after I last did that, I know that I’d feel compelled to change a lot of things. First of all, my style has changed quite a bit. And the way I understand fiction, the written word, the way said words form sentences. Or, better said, the way I prefer them to form sentences.

So the following question arises: is art ever finished? Continue reading “Almost…”

A Brief History of The Book (in Seven Pictures)

The Book: A Cover-to-Cover Exploration of the Most Powerful Object of Our Time from author Keith Houston explores the history of the book, from the Bible up through illuminated manuscripts, early book-binding, the printing press and beyond.

From parchment and papyrus to paper, from calligraphy to typesetting, enjoy some of the most striking images from Houston’s work, showing how the physical presentation of a large grouping of words has evolved over time. Continue reading “A Brief History of The Book (in Seven Pictures)”