Showing posts from December, 2011

Excuse Note 12/31/2011

Please excuse Sheila from working on her novel today as she is spending her New Year's Eve clearing the decks for the upcoming year.

The Ugly Handsome Man

So I was doing my  Three Daily Pages  (most folks might know them as Morning Pages, but I'm not always up that early) and this strange and crazy thing poured out that I'm transcribing here for future reference. If you've ever done any kind of serious writing, it's a safe bet you've had to deal with The Thing In Your Head That Keeps Stopping You From Writing.  There are a lot of names for it--Resistance, the Inner Critic, the Shitweasel.  I sometimes call it the NoMonster.  When I was writing this, the thing took on a persona I described as The Ugly Handsome Man.  (I picture him as a blond guy in a suit with a face that's just a little too . . . tight, in some way.) This is a speech given by said Ugly Handsome Man, laying out the strategies to my various gremlins for stopping me from working on my current novel.  I suspect these strategies may not be unique to my inner battles. I suggest a three-pronged strategy. Three lines of defense. I'd prefer

On Being a Writer

There's a riddle I learned from a book or a magazine when I was about eleven years old.  Goes something like this: A truck driver was going the wrong way up a one-way street.  A policeman saw him, but didn't stop him.  Why? The answer hinges on a couple of bits of linguistic sleight-of-hand.  One is the careful ambiguity of the verb--you can substitute the word travelling for going but cannot use the word driving .  Because the answer is, of course, that the truck driver was walking . The second bit of linguistic sleight of hand hinges on the nature of titles that are derived from verbs.   Truck driver is a job description and thus one can be called a truck driver even if one isn't actually driving a truck at the moment.  Truck drivers also do things like eat, sleep, watch television and, occasionally, walk places in between the business of driving trucks. To be known as a writer is a good deal more glamorous than to known as a truck driver.  When somebody asks y