Writing the Hard Thing

If I could tell you the number of stories and novels I’ve begun writing and not finished, we’d be here too long.  But “not finished” doesn’t mean “discarded.”  It means what it says.  The difficulty comes when I’ve convinced myself that I’m one sort of writer (the consistent, cheerfully productive kind) as opposed the other,… Continue reading Writing the Hard Thing

Maybe being a success-bot isn’t the way after all?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pJhUs1L_RQo

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This Mad Dance

Looking at photos of relatives from the early 20th century, I’m struck by how incredibly normal they look, how I could walk down any street and see the same faces.  Such an insight comes easily since I live near the locus of my ancestral lines, but I think it’s a realization one could have anywhere. … Continue reading This Mad Dance

Tiredness, Truth, and Mockery: the American Way

Today, I wonder whether I should re-think some of my ultra-liberal biases and attendant leftist news consumption.  This is good.  But, man, I'm beat. The alt-right (and the radical religious right) to me seems like a uniquely American expression of deep stupidity but, of course, I would say that. Look at my demographic: college educated,… Continue reading Tiredness, Truth, and Mockery: the American Way

Way Up High in the Manhattan Sky

Reeling this morning from my all-Trump-all-the-time ulcer-inducing news feed of despair, I closed my eyes and focused on my breathing. I've been a compulsive news reader since I learned how. And, for the last few months, my morning habit has evolved into a kind of shamanic pathworking. Not the startup-bro takes ayahuasca at Burning Man… Continue reading Way Up High in the Manhattan Sky

Spiritual Non-Conformity and Pain in a New Authoritarian Age

It's 4:30 AM as I begin to write this. I've already been up for an hour. I'm not sleeping that much these days. Over the last 48 hours, I've lost friends, given a lot of advice, gotten advice, been told off, and been accused of hypocrisy for taking a political stand while using the term… Continue reading Spiritual Non-Conformity and Pain in a New Authoritarian Age

The Voice in the Fire

As I have said many times and in many different ways, graduate study in literature and creative writing is not easy for anyone, even in the most favorable circumstances. There is an inner, emotional, psychological, processual effort that no one talks about and an outer, technical, rhetorical, production effort that everyone takes for granted. Both… Continue reading The Voice in the Fire