podcast of David Lynch at UC Berkely
In this hour and forty-minute podcast, filmmaker David Lynch answers questions from the audience and talks about meditation. Many of the questions concern Lynch’s film making. While I am not a big David-Lynch-fan (I missed the whole Twin Peaks craze), I did think Blue Velvet was cool and appreciate him as a skilled story-teller. Before listening to this talk, I had no idea that Lynch practiced mediation regular and says that many of his creative ideas come directly out of his mediation practice.
The meditation that Lynch has been doing for 30+ years is transcendental meditation, which he says expands his consciousness and grows his intuition. He says it is [...]
A few years ago when I was an Americorps volunteer with Habitat for Humanity, there were a couple of older retired gentleman who did some of the finish work on the houses. These were skilled craftsmen from the “Greatest” generation. And one of those guys had a motto: “Dang Old Good Enough”. That was his way of saying “Do you best even if less would suffice.”
Now I am editing my manuscript and this motto is ringing in my ears. The challenge is that I want to actually complete the thing and I could spend many, many years “making it better”. I’m sure there is an upper-limit on how much I can improve the writing but I’m not sure what that is.
And to compound the situation I went to see Junot Diaz last week and am now reading The Brief [...]
…at the Boulder Bookstore.
This summer I shared a New Yorker podcast with Diaz reading How to Date a Brown Girl (Black Girl, White Girl, or Halfie) and a discussion of the story with Edwidge Danticat. Both of them were in Poets & Writers this month also.
I’m pretty excited to meet him and to read his new book: The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao .
Lately I’ve been busy working as a house painter. But I’ve also been getting some work done on my writing. I am going over my manuscript with a red pen. I am careful to only look for grammatical and spelling errors. I don’t want to make stylistic changes at this stage, but wait until I can look at the manuscript in its entirety. [...]
The talk by Maxine Hong Kingston was given a few years ago (2004) at UC Berkely, but I only listened to the podcast this weekend and so its “news” to me.
She started her talk with this intriguing statement:
“It is a writer’s faith that simply by writing we could change the world, if only we could write well enough, if only we could approach poetry, perhaps we can even bring about world peace.”
She goes on to talk about a long project of hers, The Fifth Book of Peace, that she started more than 15 years ago. She said it was a to be a book where she would imagine peace and write characters who faced difficult situations with love. She would see if these loving characters could solve [...]
Last week I listened to an interview on KCRW’s Bookworm of Helena Maria Viramontes for her new book Their Dogs Came with Them. The host, Michael Silverblatt, gave such high praise for the book that I immediately added it to my reading list.
But he also asked Viramontes a very pointed question about stereotypes:
“There’s something that I read happened during the course of the writing of the book that I find fascinating and I’d like to discuss. Apparently, one of your students at Cornell was the wonderful writer, Junot Diaz, who came along and read some of this book and said,
“We know some of these characters. These are the cliches of latino and latina fiction.”
And you [...]