life of a thousand cuts


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I am getting spare with it. Also I reworked a few sentences and cut quite a few extraneous details. Too much back story, and there’s a lot of white space on the page. It reads well, better than I expected. Still looking to avoid having her alone too much because you need your characters to be around one another.

I’ve used it before but you have to be careful with it.  When you’re writing in first person, everything is a monologue after a fashion, so you don’t want to auto cannibalize your characters. I aim for clarity and letting the reader do the work necessary.  It’s an act of telepathy. You are reading my words in your head right now. You don’t know what I sound like, so the voice that you are probably reading this in, isn’t even my voice.

Imagine it’s Morgan Freeman’s voice if you want.You can actually hear my voice on here. I’ve recorded poetry on here before.

I do not want to waste your time with my writing. I want to take you some of the way with it. It’s a balancing act that I’m not entirely sure that I have especially well calibrated but I aim for it.

Notes from my pocket book


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My politics have gained nuance as I’ve changed and developed myself.  I tend to be drawn towards ideas that are compassionate and progressive.  What Ken Wilber talks about as the greatest span for the greatest depth and also I want to see more evidence based policies

I study Buddhism of a few varieties and I believe in showing Unsentimental Compassion towards all living beings.  Negative emotions are rooted in unhappiness and suffering and I seek to understand more than I seek to be understood.  I am pragmatic about my kindnesses because I know that I am flawed and perfect as we all are.

None of these sentiments have been expressed as part of a political platform.  We’re supposed to believe that we are base creatures of biology in a universe that was created and runs according to rules that are unassailable.  It’s a dismal zero sum  view that I understand and yet cannot wholly accept.

My passions are fuel for the engine of my existence but i practice an observed detachment because my ego is a collection of memes and experiences that I borrowed from others and my body is a suit that when it falls away will be traded in for something else.

This is all a game,  a drama that we all play with such intensity that we forget it isn’t real. I still play and perform with the awareness that it is just a game.

We’re all here for one another.  If we have to play then why not make the game one where we are sourced in enthusiastic nothingness?

It seems naive but it feels good to see the world this way. 

Judging others for their sexuality and expression of it is an avoidance technique.  So long as no harm is being done and enthusiastic consent is a constant then let people live as they would wish to.

life of a thousand cuts


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I really enjoyed the process tonight. Editing is something that I do less of than writing, but it’s probably the more important part of it. Tonight I looked back at what I had edited and it read better. It was smoother and in my own opinion, much better than the first draft without losing the energy that I always hope is the trade off for ignoring the clumsiness and the dead ends that are part and parcel of a first draft.

Also, I want to be invisible on the page. By that, I mean I want to get out of the way and you read the story with the minimum of affectation on my part. I want to show you rather than tell you what’s going on. I love writing and making the work that I do be of the best quality possible. I read a great deal and I am expanding my horizons, as much to educate myself on the writers who are considered great.

(Apropos of nothing, Margaret Atwood is fucking amazing. So is Alice Hoffman. I’ve got to get some of Joyce Carol Oates’s work too. Zadie Smith’s White Teeth is on the to-read pile and also Dickens, who’ve I not read before, but really should)

As well as reading for pleasure. I feel that the more reading I do, the better my writing becomes, or at least my intuition on what good writing is, if you can see the distinction. I believe in what I am doing, and editing adds to my confidence.

(I will be soliciting the service of a few beta readers, if you’re interested, please let me know)

The Burning Soul by John Connolly


I’m a long time fan of his Parker books.  That’s not to be confused with Richard Stark’s character as Charlie is a more complicated and contradictory character.  I’ve read through the series of books and marvelled at the plotting and development of the world Connolly creates a rich and compelling set of characters and situations. 

As an example of blending genres,  Connolly creates a superior example without making it feel ungainly and unwieldly.  This book contains none of the supernatural elements directly but the book has hints of them at the beginning and ending. Connolly trusts and works in his world with a confidence and ability to test his characters and write in a voice that’s uniquely his.
Start with Every Dead Thing.  Marvel that he’s not already dominating the market and pray that tv or film don’t spoil the ambience he’s created so expertly. 

life of a thousand cuts

I used to edit with a degree of trepidation. Now I am more confident of what I see as being weakness. I’m aiming for a point of show rather than tell. Unpacking things and then shaping what I wrote in the heat of the first draft and then looking at what I actually said and what became apparent.

You see things differently when you’re detached from the writing you’ve done previously. It’s not always easy, but you must not be precious about the words but make them work for you.

I might, at some point, look at different ways of staying within one space, editing in smaller bursts but I have a process that works for me. Experiments are useful if they help you improve. Otherwise they are affectations.

I’ve hit 70 pages now, so in about two weeks I will have the first third done. It’s something to look forward to.


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