Six Tips on Writing from John Steinbeck

In 1940, John Steinbeck was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for his novel, The Grapes of Wrath. In 1962 he was also awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature. The same year he wrote a letter to actor and fellow writer Robert Wallsten, in which he offered six tips on writing. Continue reading Six Tips on Writing from John Steinbeck

TMM: alter ego

alter ego: 

a second self or different version of oneself, such as
a :a trusted friend
b :the opposite side of a personality –  Clark Kent and his alter ego Superman
c: a fictional character that is the author’s alter ego

Literature is the lie that tells the truth. Or so they say. That’s why sometimes writers choose to use alter egos. Ernest Hemingway wrote the so-called Nick Adams stories, John Updike had Rabbit Angstrom and Henry Bech, Bukowski had Henry Chinaski.

But why? Continue reading TMM: alter ego

Art and Obsession

obsession
“OK, I got Velazquez portrait of the Pope Innocent X. Quite an ambivalent study of absolute power. And here comes Francis Bacon. Despite never having seen this painting in person, Bacon became so obsessed with it that he compulsively repainted it over and over again, each version more horrific than the previous. […] It’s not until an artist finds his obsession that he can create his most inspired work.”Anamorph

Continue reading Art and Obsession

Struggling With Writer’s Block? Here’s How to Overcome it

Ah, the (in)famous writer’s block, also known as creative bankruptcy.

It’s by far the most hated aspect of being a writer.

Sometimes it’s so severe that it makes you doubt your abilities, maybe even doubt whether being a writer is worth it.

What am I going to write about?

I could almost hear a lot of writers thinking that it would be better to fake their own deaths rather than try to find a satisfactory answer to this question.

Maybe I’m being a bit melodramatic. Just a bit.

So, yeah, how do you overcome writer’s block?

Continue reading Struggling With Writer’s Block? Here’s How to Overcome it

Famous Writers and Their Addictions

“Coleridge was a drug addict. Poe was an alcoholic. Marlowe was killed by a man whom he was treacherously trying to stab. Pope took money to keep a woman’s name out of a satire, then wrote a piece so that she could still be recognized, anyhow. Chatterton killed himself. Byron was accused of incest. Do you still want to be a writer -and if so, why?” – Bennett Cerf

Some of the world’s most famous writers have been addicts, abusing almost anything, from coffee and alcohol to sex and drugs. They often wrote about their addictions, about the way the human conditions is degraded by them.

Here’s a short list of famous writers and their vices: Continue reading Famous Writers and Their Addictions

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

Showcase: Egon Schiele

“Art cannot be modern. Art is primordially eternal.”

Egon Schiele

• 12th of June 1890 – 31st of October 1918

• influences : Art Nouveau

Egon Schiele was born in 1890 in Tulln, Lower Austria. During his early life, he would spend many hours drawing trains, but over the years his fascination switched to human beings, depicting us in his own simple but yet intense style of painting and drawing.

He was a pioneer of expressionism. At that time, the new en vogue trend was described as “the exhibition is intended to offer a general view of the newest movement in painting, which has succeeded atmospheric naturalism and the impressionist rendering of motion, and which strives to offer a simplification and intensification in the mode of expression, after new rhythms and new uses of color and a decorative or monumental configuration – a general view of that movement which has been described as expressionism.” – Expressionism described in typically polemic terms in the preface for the 1912 exhibition in Cologne.

Schiele did a remarkably good job at materializing those words above in œuvre d’art, although his methods were a bit unorthodox, like luring underage girls to model for him.

Continue reading Showcase: Egon Schiele