Process

Criterion’s One Criterion: A Unique Selling Proposition

So many claims made by ads are either too easy to see through or just plain unappealing. Long gone are the days when I felt tempted to swing by a drive-thru on my way home from work; ditto for my brand allegiance to almost anything aside from Adidas, and even then I don't re-up until… Continue reading Criterion’s One Criterion: A Unique Selling Proposition

Process

Fiction Two Ways

Discussions about craft are important in any medium, but in writing they can be particularly insightful because the they are delivered through the medium in which they seek to explore. My favorites include Stephen King's On Writing and John Gardner's The Art of Fiction, and I recently added James Wood's How Fiction Works to the… Continue reading Fiction Two Ways

Process, Uncategorized

Disorienting Clarity

About a year ago I read Diane Williams's "Four In Prose" in Harper's Magazine, and I could not get it out of my head. In her characteristically brief fashion, Williams uses all of fiction's signposts but sends readers off into another dimension entirely where meaning hovers just beyond the brink of understanding. This is true… Continue reading Disorienting Clarity

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Escaping Influence

A few weeks ago I wrote about my most recent writing's similarities to Cronenberg's body-horror flicks from early in his career, and the thought, once I'd put it into words, wormed its way all the way down the street to the library, where it forced me to borrow The Brood, Videodrome, and Naked Lunch. I'd… Continue reading Escaping Influence

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Rhythm, Sound and Sense

Words are fun. In an interview with Kendrick Lamar, the rapper talked about the pleasure of molding words to his own purposes, twisting them so that they rhymed or almost rhymed. Internal rhyme, end rhyme and rhythm are the backbone of rap and have been the site of the genre's most noticeable innovations beyond, of… Continue reading Rhythm, Sound and Sense

Process, Uncategorized

Constant Revision

John Steinbeck once wrote that you should not get caught up in the language or style of a piece but should instead just plow through and worry about fixing everything up later. As a practical strategy for just getting ideas on the page, this is excellent advice. In order for a story to work you… Continue reading Constant Revision

Process

Hour of the Wolf (1968)

"A minute is actually an immense space of time." My favorite moment from Ingmar Bergman's "Vargtimmen" (Hour of the Wolf) comes nearly halfway through the film. For the viewer, it is a test of faith offered by a artist assured of his craft who knows full well that time is the beating heart of film.… Continue reading Hour of the Wolf (1968)