A few weeks ago I went to a Naropa’s Small Press & Journal Fair where faculty member Andrew Wille gave out a list of “Websites, Blogs, and Email Newsletters”. Andrew was a senior editor at Little, Brown and Company UK. His resources contain some links to England which is really cool. He talked about the neat things going on in small press in England, like Route.
I did some searching around myself and came across this cool magazine: Bullet. I ordered three back issues and already have a story in mind that I want to send them.
Here are some of other resources, enjoy:
Independent Northern Publishers
Center for Book Culture
Open Directory dmoz
Everyone Who’s Anyone in Publishing
Lit Mag Central
And somehow I stumbled across Richard Hell today, maybe I heard of [...]
I got this link from Anne’s blog. It is a podcast of a radio show called “Word by Word”. The most recent one is an interview with T.C. Boyle. I’ve heard of Boyle but have not yet read any of his work. Still I was curious because I see his name around so much.
You can listen to the Podcast by dragging this URL: http://krcb.podgram.net/WordByWord.xml into the “Subscribed to Podcast” in the advanced tool menu of iTunes.
His voice surprised me. He sounds like a guy with a Ph. D. and in fact he does have a Ph. D., which also surprised me. What I liked most about the interview was what he said about writing being his job. He said he writes everyday. He enjoys writing, like its his job.
Continuing with the Bobbie Brown reference.
Yesterday was the last day of the “Designing a Writer Workshop”. Jack Collom passed out some great information on grant writing, with examples of two of his grants. He also discussed the controversy around his SPAM poetry, which led to a larger discussion of art and censorship. I brought up the Critical Art Ensemble I wrote about last week. Other people in the class mentioned similar situations where artists and writers have been harrassed by law enforcment for anti-war or suspected “terrorist” activities.
One of my wonderful classmates, Robin Marin, led an awesome writing exercise (without even a hint of terroristic undertones) using popcorn. She brought in an air-popper and while the popcorn was popping she asked us to write down words describing what we were experiencing with our five senses: hearing, taste, touch, smell, [...]
This is the second weekend of the “Designing a Writing Workshop” with Jack Collom and Lee Christopher. We presented a pretend course syllabus. I created a syllabus for a mock course: I Got a Write to Sing the Blues: An Autobiography Workshop. My course description was:
“Soon that deep blue sea
is gonna be calling me
Call it love, say what you choose
I’ve got a right to sing the blues
the blues, the blues, the blues”
~ Harold Arlen / Ted Koehler
The blues uses autobiographical statement and story to redeem experience. In this class we will explore our own and others stories, lived and imagined. We will examine how our autobiographical material is structured by story and language. We will discover how the stories of our lives can challenge the perceptions of some and affirm the lives of others, while allowing readers to choose their own access point into the stories meaning. We will learn how through sharing the stories of our lived lives we are able to realize the nature of our being and discover love and redemption. Work [...]
This week I completed the first draft of a new story. I feel good about it. The story is called “A Murder Etude” and is on zoetrope now. It’s gotten one helpful and positive review. I’m going to bring the story to workshop on Monday.
Completing a story is an exhilirating feeling. It’s like giving birth to a child (not that I really know what that’s like but it feels something like I imagine giving birth might feel like). I’m proud of my story but I’m also concerned. Is my story good enough? What will happen to my story when other people read it? Will they have the same love for my story that I do?
The story was inspired by biomechanics, an acting technique developed by Vsevolod Meyerhold in Moscow in the 1930’s. Meyerhold came up with 16 etudes for his technique, each of which tells a simple story. One of them is a “Stabbing Etude” with two actors. One actor murders the other by stabbing him and then carries the body off the stage.
I saw [...]
Along the lines of my last post, Sounds of Peace, about anti-war literature actually having pro-war implications, I came across an essay by Kenneth Burke in The Philosophy of Literary Form which concerns anti-war literature and the associated contradictions.
Burke discusses the antiwar photography book The First World War: A Photographic History published in 1933.
It is questionable whether the feelings of horror, repugnance, hatred would furnish the best groundwork as a deterrent to war. They are extremely militaristic attitudes, being in much the same category of emotion as one might conceivably experience when plunging his bayonet into the flesh of the enemy. And they might well provide the firmest basis upon which the “heroism” of a new war could be erected.
I have never seen anyone turn from The Iliad a-froth with desire for slaughter. ….such a human picture might be less likely to encourage the hysteria which, in its intensity, can be converted into its antithesis at a moment’s notice, becoming the counterhysteria of rabidity and ferocity.
Our assigned reading for “Concerning the Spiritual in Art” this week was a chapter on Hieronymus Bosch’s The Garden of Earthly Delight from The Mystic Fable.
de Certeau seems to make of the painting a commentary on meaning. For me the painting and de Certeau’s thoughts brought up the issue of anti-war writing that somehow supports war and a war mentality.
I am concerned with war, with the war going on now in Iraq. I am writing stories that are concerned with war. But I do not want my stories to somehow influence people to join the military or otherwise support the war effort. I want to tell a good story, but not one that glorifies war.
When I brought this up in class the topic struck a chord with most people. I used as an example Apacolypse Now. Other people brought up Saving Private Ryan, The Thin Red Line, and MASH (MASH’s theme song is one of my all time favorites: Suicide is Painless).
Someone mentioned that the Dalai Lama has talked about the excessive amount of anti-war [...]
So far in Keith Abbott’s class we’ve been learning all about POV. There are moments when I feel very sharp and capable as a writer. Then there are the moments when I feel dull and ignorant. It’s not necessarily a bad thing, just a little uncomfortable.
Last week we read “Fits” by Alice Munro and were given the assignment to go through each of the nineteen scenes detailing beats, give a specific objective, and identifying Point of View. The assignment wasn’t terribly difficult for me, time consuming but not difficult.
Then I got to class and listened to what everyone else had gotten out of it. It had seemed to me that most of the story was told from one character’s POV, Robert’s. But for others there had been many, many POVs that shifted throughout the story and through each scene.
That shift in POV seriously shifted the experience of the story. I had experienced the story from the protaganist’s POV almost exclusively and came away feeling confident that the protaginist was able to realize his objective. But [...]
As a two credit weekend course I am taking “Designing a Writing Workshop” with Jack Collom and Lee Christopher. The class met today for six hours and will meet three more times this month.
The course description in the syllabus is:
This two-weekend workshop/practicum will present the necessary information for a student to write a course description and a syllabus, create and lead writing assignments, evaluate student work, and (begin to) thrive in public & private schools, state & private colleges, and universities.
Today we talked alot about types of employment opportunities for teachers of writing. There was the concern raised about the influence of teaching writing on one’s own writing process. Jack Collom said he worked for twenty years in factories and wrote in the evenings because he was concerned that teaching would stifle his process. But he added that for the past thirty years he has been teaching writing and it has added to his own writing process.
Lee Christopher gave a thorough discussion on the opportunities for adjunct faculty teaching positions. The pay ranges from around [...]
The semester has really picked up. I have something to do all the time. Before starting graduate school I was warned about the massive amount of reading that would be involved and it is true. So my posts for a while will probably be related to my course work. Here is a prospectus for my final project in Concerning the Spiritual in Art:
Working Title: Structural Art & Story Design
This paper will contrast the radical notion of structural design as art with the radical notion of writing as story design. Principles of structural art are (1)efficiency, (2) economy, and (3)elegance (Thomas Telford). These same principles can be applied to the story form (both Robert McKee and David Mamet). I will discuss the principles and implications of story design within a narrative context.
• What are the aesthetics of structural art?
• What connections are there between structural design and story design?
• What is the purpose of story? What is its function?
• What are the elements of story?
• Is there a fundamental or human or natural story form?
• Are there examples of story in nature? [...]