Thursday, February 12, 2009

On Writing Lazy.

I've been thinking about writing, and all it's past and future formats.






I'm still not sure that Kindle is going to put books out of business; at least in my lifetime. But I look over at my 30k worth of worthless Anime DVD's; which have been completely subverted by 'fan-sub' pirating, and I can't be sure.


Buster comparing himself to Emma Goldman brought up the issue of Anonymity again. Emma Goldman is one of my favorite historical characters -- mostly because of her sheer guts and courage. (Her politics are another matter....)

There was a good documentary on the American Experience about her, and I've always been partial to the Stewart Holbrook's (a good Northwest Writer) books on 'progressives'.

She stood up to the Man. She walked right up the the Man and told him exactly what she thought of him. She got thrown into jail over and over again, and eventually she was deported. She didn't back down. And she certainly never hid behind anonymity.

I started this blog without fully thinking out whether anonymity or not was an option.

I'm kind of glad I went with this format. I find that when I read comments by people who are anonymous, I tend to dismiss much of what they say. Except when they make a good, reasoned point.

And the same good, reasoned point could be made with even more credibility with a real name.


I'm also noticing that I find the less formal, less structured economy blogs better reads. Calculated Risk, Mish's and Big Picture have a loosey goosey nature that I like, whereas more formally written columns by the likes of Krugman and Wolfe are interesting, but somehow....stilted. There is something very spontaneous and fresh about some blogs.


The comic distributer Diamond has imposed limits on low selling independents. They have this right, but since they are a near monopoly, this policy has major ramifications.

Comics have always had a low barrier to entry. Self-publishing isn't considered Vanity Press -- most of the time. We get tons of schlock, but also the occasional gem.

I believe that this creative freedom has made comics an incredibly fertile territory, which Hollywood, video games, and even books have taken notice.


Which has got me thinking about my own creative efforts. One of the things that blocked me on writing future books was the concern that it needed to be right, it needed to be well-thought out, it needed to be spectacularly different and new.

But if I'd just been spinning stories all these years, without regard to heavy handed editorializing, who knows what might have emerged.


I announced at the Farewell Bend Writer's Roundtable that I was contemplating a Lazy Book.

"What's that?"

"Any damn thing I want. And I'll read it to you guys, but don't you dare criticize."

I know from past experience that I'd eventually polish and rewrite -- but I also remember that I finally sprung my writing loose on the first book by telling myself to "Just Write a Story."

And when I got bogged down a few years later, I sprung myself loose by telling myself, "Write Sloppy."

So....writing Lazy is just another version of that.


Just as in my store I threw out all the rules about what constitutes literature; and I allowed myself to carry everything that intrigued me, whether it be cartoons, books, games, comics, graphic novels, art books, children's books, etc. etc.

I think that the creative urge takes all kinds of forms -- I'd like to write songs, and draw pictures, and so on. But writing comes pretty naturally, and I need to just let it flow, no matter what format it takes.


Anonymous said...

"I find that when I read comments by people who are anonymous, I tend to dismiss much of what they say. Except when they make a good, reasoned point."

So in other words -- it doesn't matter, does it! You're admitting that anonymous people have good points to make -- in fact, I think the best points tend to be made by people who are anonymous.

Maybe if they weren't anonymous, they wouldn't be able to make such points.

Not all of us can be an Emma Goldman. She basically threw away the life most of us would want (e.g., family, friends, income).


As human beings we don't like "anonymous" because we prefer the stereotypes -

- Bill is a liberal, so I bet he supports candidate X.

- Fred is a conservative, so on abortion is position is likely to be Y.

We want to stereotype because it saves mental energy.

With anonymous posters -- you have to work a bit harder, don't you!


The point is ideas -- throw the ideas out there and see what sticks.

Anonymous said...

Buster comparing himself to Emma Goldman brought up the issue of Anonymity again.


You always twist shit around. What I have said, and I have consistently said for over 2+ years, is that 'politically' I'm an 'emma goldman' anarchist.

Does YOUR voting for OREO suggest that you are comparing yourself to him? I think not.

My treasuring the political insight of Goldman, and having read her books in my youth doesn't suggest I see myself as such. I simply feel that of any political persuasion her writings on the hypocrisy of the USA is where I feel most comfortable. Second to her would be Malcolm X.

On the note of transference or role models, I like H.L. Mencken, which I have also said before, and thus if you want to twist shit you can suggest that, but humbly I don't claim to be Mencken, I simply think that during the depression he offered one of the few visions of reality in the day, and he's a riot.

Dunc, your an idiot, but given you love to say random wild shit, and given your religious need to post blogs daily and make shit up, I felt you needed to be corrected. Not that I or anybody else should care.

Your a sci-fi dreamer, I have read very little fiction in my years. I find truth way more entertaining than fiction, like Twain ( another anonymASS ) says "Truth is more strange than fiction, as fiction has to make sense."

Anonymous said...

Hunter Thompson comes to my mind as what you would define as 'lazy writing'.

What I would call fun, creative, refreshing, ...

This is why I have always called 'dunc' to be Ned Flanders, the boring drippy white christian next door that spends his whole life trying to be all things to all people, but in the end takes a gun to his head.

Try to be lazy dunc, have some fun, quit being a prim.