Art, not Trump

61hGibmhRgLJust to stop talking about Trump for a moment, if you will allow my meandering thoughts:

The word ‘art’ is a very broad term. Just about anything can be considered art, as long as it’s performed with passion and skill. Professional football can be considered an art form. Skillfully driving a car can be considered a form of art. Hell, working at a bank can be considered an art form. These types of ‘art’ are what I consider vocational art, when someone is in the zone, who is executing a particular task with grace and prowess, without even having to think about it.

However, I am considering ‘art’ in the classical sense. Painting. Acting. Dancing. Making music. Writing, like I’m trying to stumble through. These are what we usually consider to be art.

Art, in my opinion, is the intentional endeavor, by the artist, no matter the medium, to manipulate their audience, whomever that may be. I don’t mean manipulation in the treacherous, devious sense; I mean it in the overt act of trying to elicit an emotional reaction in the beholder. This is what a good artist does. They pull a reaction, a feeling, an emotion, from their audience.

As human beings, it’s in our nature to feel. We want to feel emotion, we want to be moved. When we let an artist into our heads, we are inviting our emotions to be monkeyed with, for lack of a better term, in order to feel something. Sometimes, there is an intentional response an artist is trying to invoke. Other times, an artist is simply trying to get us to look at the world in a different way.

And other times, often, an artist is simply making art for the sake of making art. But it is still likely to have an impact.

In any event, good art will make the viewer, audience, or whomever stop and think, and, ideally, feel something stirring.

Just my opinion. Feel free to comment.

Out of the writer’s hands

Well, I’ve shared the 5th rough draft of A Pack of Dogs with several folks now; maybe I’ll get some feedback, maybe not, or maybe people will think I’m just plain nuts. Anyway, there comes a time for an artist, no matter what their medium, when they find that their work is out of their hands, when it is completely open to the interpretation of the viewer, or reader. I’m fascinated to see what people think.

I would be remiss if I did not mention my girlfriend/editor/best friend/all around detonation of creativity, Maria L. Berg. She is one of the most talented artists I have ever met, in so many mediums. Currently, she is focusing on her writing. She has two rough drafts of novels, and is currently working on a third, a convoluted tale that makes Carl Hiaasen and the Coen Brothers look like Mr. Rogers goes to Baskin Robins.

She has also published a series of children’s books, the adventures of Gator McBumpypants. These are fantastic, if you have little ones. The illustrations are amazing; instead of drawings or computer generated imagery, she uses actual stuffed animals, posing them for pictures to tell the stories. She does amazing work.

She also writes about the craft of writing itself. Her blog can be quite inspiring, for any writer. Check it out sometime:

That’s all for now; I’ll keep you updated. Have a great weekend!



The 5th rough draft is done!

Well, alright! The fifth, and, at this point, final rough draft of my novella, A Pack of Dogs, is finally finished. It clocked in at just shy of 41,000 words. Now I hand it off to Maria and Pedro, and go from there!

In the meantime, I’ve got an idea for another short story I want to crank out. Time to take a break from A Pack of Dogs and move on to something else for awhile.

Happy Thanksgiving everybody!

Okay, so I lied.

I know I said I would give the novella a week off, but I just can’t! I’m having too much fun! I love the characters, and I keep thinking of things I want to change or add. This story kicks ass.

So, I promise, this weekend I will wrap up the fourth edit, and hand it off to Pedro and Maria. Then, I’ve got to leave the story alone for awhile. I’ve got other tales in mind…

I know I keep repeating myself, but if it’s this fun to write, it should be fun to read. I guess I’ll find out!

The 3rd rough draft is done!

So I’ve finished the 3rd rough draft of my novella. It was tedious, but I made some good changes. This might actually be a fun story to read.

I am going to take some good advice, and leave the story alone forĀ  awhile. I will give it another read next weekend. In the meantime, I’ve got a short story to work on, although this week will be plenty busy, what with Thanksgiving and all.

My first proof-readers/editors/victims will be my brother Pedro and my Sweetie-Pie Maria. Pedro is a voracious reader, and I trust his input: he is not afraid to give me a direct opinion. Maria is the finest writer I know, and I am greatly looking forward to what she has to say about the story.

After that, I think I’ll make an announcement of the Facebook. Then, probably several more edits and rewrites. Then, hopefully, after that, I can begin to shop it around to publishers. Wish me luck!

Drug-induced editing may not be for everyone.

Well, I’m enjoying the third rough draft of my novella, but it’s been quite the adventure. Yesterday, I tore the hell out my lower back, so I’m currently writing while being as high as a kite, as the clinic gave me some pretty effective painkillers. I know that some writers, famous ones even, use substances of various types (pick yer poison) to inspire them, but I don’t know if the muscle relaxers are helping or not. I think I will call this edit the stoned draft. We’ll see how it turns out.

HaveĀ  a great day everybody!

(Good) writing is hard.

I tell you what, writing is hard. Well, putting words down on a piece of paper or on your hard drive might not be so difficult, but actual, good writing is hard.

I’m currently working on the third rough draft of my novella. Many changes are being made. It’s a tad tedious, but I am enjoying the process, and I love the story. My hope is that if it’s fun to write, it’ll be fun to read.

I’ve found that listening to music while I write helps, though this may not be for every author. Depending on the scene I’m writing, I’ve been listening to: Loreena McKennitt, Sisters of Mercy, The Chameleons UK, Disturbed, Florence and the Machine, and Ennio Morricone. An odd mix, I know, but it’s a strange story I’m telling.

I hope you are all well!


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