“A word after a word after a word is power.” ― Margaret Atwood
There’s this thing called verbal narcissism. It’s pretty much the ability to game a wall, if it comes to that. To sell sand in the Sahara Desert.
It also means to be so in love with your own words that it could mean talking on and on about things that few people ever care about. Or it could happen that you do deliver a strong message, but you’re using so many words to do so, that it’s all distilled to the point of making people want to smack you over the head with their keyboards. Continue reading Are You In Love With Your Own Writing?
I was doing a bit of research into Pablo Picasso for the showcase of his earliest works, and I read that he created some fifty thousand works during his life. Fifty thousand. If you were to do one per day, it would take you some 136 years. A hundred and thirty six years…
Do you understand the level of commitment that is required of one if he desires to become phenomenal? One of the best? To be considered a genius by his peers? You literally have to break yourself in half. To be so obsessed about whatever it is you’re doing that you end up sacrificing a lot of other stuff.
Yes, you can have anything you want, but you’ll have to give up on (almost) everything else to get it.
Now, Leonardo DaVinci.
Areas of interest: invention, painting, sculpting, architecture, science, music, mathematics, engineering, literature, anatomy, geology, astronomy, botany, writing, history, and cartography. The father of paleontology, ichnology, and architecture. One of the greatest painters of all time. Credited with the invention of technology we never properly developed until hundreds of years after his death, such as the helicopter, the parachute, or the tank. Continue reading You’re No Leonardo DaVinci and That’s Okay
To those of you who don’t know me well enough, I say this: My name is Cristian Mihai. I’m 28 years old. And I have been writing for fourteen years.
I make art. I aspire to create beauty.
I wrote because I was broken, felt alone, different, too weak to even matter in a big and cruel world.
It made me feel less awful.
It made me feel as if I was kind of good at something.
Isn’t this what truly matters? How you’d define passion? To be kind of glad you’re kind of good at something. Continue reading Art and Hope
It is estimated that some three million people died in the Soviet forced-labour camps of Kolyma, in the northeastern area of Siberia. Shalamov himself spent seventeen years there, and in these stories he vividly captures the lives of ordinary people caught up in terrible circumstances, whose hopes and plans extended to further than a few hours.
Feeling depressed? Feeling as if life’s unfair? Hard? People are mean? Read Kolyma Tales. That should make you feel better.
Don’t believe me?
“The men were not shown the thermometer, but that wasn’t necessary since they had to work in any weather. Besides, longtime residents of Kolyma could determine the weather precisely even without a thermometer: if there was frosty fog, that meant the temperature outside was forty degrees below zero; if you exhaled easily but in a rasping fashion, it was fifty degrees below zero; if there was a rasping and it was difficult to breathe, it was sixty degrees below; after sixty degrees below zero, spit froze in mid-air. Spit had been freezing in mid-air for two weeks.”
Continue reading Book Review: Kolyma Tales by Varlam Shalamov
Life and art are incredibly close to one another. Almost identical, but not quite. Like a parallel dimension, like an alternate universe, art has always been the number one destination for those who cannot find a place in a certain society.
But art and sex? Continue reading TMM: Sex and Art
Forgive me, for I am here to destroy your insecurities. Your excuses. That thing you do when you tell yourself that your first draft must be perfect. The illusion that great writing is born in a single moment of inspiration.
I want to destroy those things so you can get down to the business of writing. And that begins with first drafts.
First drafts tend to scare the hell out of most writers. Even the greats. Kurt Vonnegut said, “When I write, I feel like an armless, legless man with a crayon in his mouth.”
So when a writer of his caliber makes a statement like that … do you think you will be any different? Continue reading How to Write a First Draft
“A blank piece of paper is God’s way of telling us how hard it is to be God.” — Sidney Sheldon
BSOD or Blue Screen of Death is a an error screen displayed on a Windows computer system after a fatal system error.
Writers have something called a WSOD or White Screen of Death. It looks something like this: Continue reading The Writer: Episode #6