Trying too Hard

Delicate work is brutal, a paradox eventually forgotten as the craftsman polishes his technique. As he polishes his technique he cultivates his patience. This is how he learns the effort of restraint, and learns again that particular effort is a supreme effort, a choice that always allows more choices in future but demands more refinement at present, toward making more of a universal statement in the universe. The grind is daily only in its season, and only after the chipping away hints a vague silhouette, the shape of the thing to come, but not anytime soon.

Such a principle applies when creating any original work of art worthily rated as a masterpiece, perceptively imbued with multiple levels of emotions implied or inferred.

About Style Guides

Use them consistently. It makes your writing more betterer.
Consistency comes in as many flavors as different spellings for the same word and all variations of correctly punctuating the same sentence. Rules is rules. Adhering to them establishes credibility. Breaking them is okay if done consistently and to make a point. We call such consistency in writing style. Excellent writers have a style, call it a voice, identifiable as their own even though that voice follows rules the writer would rather not. Competent editors and publishers see to it. Compromise happens, sometimes. It’s a process. It’s credible and/or creditable. But go with one or the other. Make sure a word means what you want it to mean, and be consistent.

ideas worth remembering are usually forgotten

Yes, yes. This is only another idea, and idea in itself about ideas. What’s the big idea? What is a big idea? What’s so big about a big idea that offers little or nothing in return.

I carry around a notebook and pen. Sometimes I remember to write down a thing or two that occurs to me. I’ll write down anything that comes to mind that seems like it isn’t the kind of thing that comes to mind, usually. I got the idea to start doing this when I would review things I had thought of that I didn’t think I had usually thought of, an occurrence or two, like: notions; quips; word play; inventions; fresh etymological possibilities; allusions; melodies; techniques; character enhancements; plot elements, and on and on. If I’m lucky I remember to write them down. I can write them down if I remember to bring the notebook and pen. Maybe I should just text myself. Yeah, that would work. And here, I’ve already written it down. But isn’t writing something down in longhand part of the process of fleshing out the idea?

Ten or fifteen years ago I was interested in film. I wrote films as invited, some would say commissioned. Had never thought of writing for the medium until an old friend, a producer with a couple of movies to his credit that presented some respectable if not downright famous-name actors. I embraced the challenge, learned all I could, cranked out a bunch of junk and perhaps some enjoyable nuggets here and there. Even made a bit of money.

Mostly importantly, I discovered story structure, plot control and all that kind of thing I had never worried about as a poet, a journalist, or as a stream-of-consciousness narrative writer. This changed my life. No it didn’t Okay, it did. Just not as much as it should have. I didn’t allow it. Didn’t even encourage it. As a rule I do not follow rules. This, and other paradoxes, has set my trusty compass off any true direction by more than a few degrees. The long and short of my journey is that I must go around the world quite a few times before I arrive at my ultimate goal. Sorry.
No shortage of ideas here. The more disparate are the elements of a problem, the more creative the solution. That’s all there is to it.

the perfect brick

is hard to find… it’s harder than a brick to find. Especially if it is a perfect brick you are trying to find. Perfection in a brick cannot be overrated. No perfection can. Yet, a brick of perfection will go unnoticed amidst all lesser bricks because nothing other than its equal is capable of knowing such perfection. Part of its imperfection is that an imperfect brick cannocomprehend the perfection of a perfect brick. (more…)