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bear by san

December 2021



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iggy pop chairman of the bored

i hate to see a friend go down in flames without a song

I used to like my work a lot more than I do now when it was a lot worse than it is now.

I used to really enjoy the stuff I wrote. And it was pretty much grade-A ass. These days, I suspect it's probably pretty good, and I'm never happy with it at all.

I suspect that's a corrolary to the thing where the way a reader approaches a text is often more revealing of the reader than the text. For example (speaking entirely in generalities) it is my observation that critics tend to approach a work in terms of what they percieve it is attempting to do, and how successful it is in accomplishing those goals. Accomplished writers tend to approach it in terms of the choices the author made, and why he made those choices, and whether or not they were the best choices by which to do what he needed done.

And apprentice writers tend to approach it in terms of what they would have done. Which seems to be a vital part of the learning process, and is probably why copying and changing, or pastiche, is such an effective learning tool.

What's interesting to me is that as I have gotten more tools into my artistic toolkit, as it were, I become more and more aware of the fact that I am making choices, that there are multiple ways to accomplish the same goal. When I began writing, I did what I did because it was the only way I could figure out how to do it. Later on, I got to a point where I could make more conscious and careful choices.

Now? Well, you know. I am starting to feel like I actually know what I'm doing. Of course, everything I write these days appears really pedestrian to me, and I can see all its flaws in stark relief, and how my skills are really inadequate to my purposes. But I guess it's better to be skilled and doubtful than unskilled and certain. ;-)



I thought you might enjoy knowing that someone has made a fanmix for your book, Blood and Iron.

thank you! A rather good fanmix, too.
That is seriously a rocking review.

I hope s/he likes the sequel. *g*
I'm sorry, I wish I could help. I didn't download it myself, I merely linked.

In her post it says to tell her when downloads run out and she'll happily reupload.

Re: I can't brane today, I brought the dumb

No worries. :)
Hmm, interesting stuff, Bear.

And I agree that skilled and doubtful beats crap and certain - doubt wins over blind faith and comes up with much more interesting conclusions.

And yes, there is no essential reading of any text - the reader writes the meaning as they go, putting it into their own context and highlighting their own purpose.

The food critic thinks of the taste, the chef thinks of the culinary craft and the cook wonders how they got their pastry to be so light.

So to speak.
Sad but true, I think. *g*
Like music... When you start to play guitar, you learn "House of the Rising Son" because it has slow chord changes, and you can arpeggiate...If at that time you feel like playing "Ode To Joy" as a thrash punk Bluegrass song, you're out of luck, Ja?

So when you learn to change chords with facility, the problem is "what do i want to say to the audience, right now?"

And today i figured that one of the real differences that seperates Tolkin from oll the "Look Look a Unicorn!" fantasy, is that Tolkin had something to say, based on his service in two world wars. I think it was "Little guys count. Weak disparate people who work together can in fact defeat true evil, if they have the strength to pay the price.

I found some sort of similar themes in W&W, "You can't get well, but you can get better" or something..

So then...
Yeah, pretty much.

You can't change it. But that doesn't excuse you from trying to mend it....
the story of "da bluz".... woke up this morning...(that's the hard part..)

Looked around for my shoes..(making progress here)

Tell by that..(here comes the moral)

Had them walking blues.

Or as paul simon said; "Breakdowns come, and breakdowns go, what you gonna do about it, what i want to know?"
Yeah. The "I Suck" stage is the one that I'm afraid will destroy me. :) We'll seen when I get there.
Seriously. :-P
But I guess it's better to be skilled and doubtful than unskilled and certain. ;-)

Espeically since the majority of readers will see what you put on the page (the skill, or lack thereof), and not what's in your head (the doubt, or lack thereof).
What if it was possible to record what was in the author's head, and market such recordings?
*g* What did you think you were reading?
I guess it's better to be skilled and doubtful than unskilled and certain.
True in all of my experience.

Recordings from the writer's head

*g* What did you think you were reading?


Sometimes it's hard to put away the things you've learned, usually it's better not to try.

I must admit, though, I only really started enjoying reading again after I'd learned to put down my pencil and stop analysing.

I still do it on the second read-through (anyone's work, not just mine). The first time through I just try and see the pretty (or not so pretty) pictures.

Re: Recordings from the writer's head

I had a couple of years when I couldn't read fiction.

I still can't read it for simple enjoyment the way I used to.

Such is life.

Re: Recordings from the writer's head

I know what you mean. I have to unplug the bit of myself that thinks - and that's really hard to do.

Maybe when I've bashed myself on the head a few more times, I'll get the hang of it again. I'll be able to read for enjoyment all the time! ;)
I'm glad a published author feels this way. In revising my nove right now I am half convinced it was written with Microsoft Suck. Then I get to a new spot and it's like, "Cool! I wrote that? I like that!" and then seconds later I think i write no better than I did in 1987.
We all suck. Welcome to the club. Pate?

You got any other whores d'hoover? I'm fond of cheez whiz on water crackers.

cheez whiz
I used to like my old writing more than I do my current writing, and unfortunately, my instincts are good. Disability has a bunch to do with that. What's killing is I did my *best writing* I think right before that, but then, that could be delusion of course.

But I still don't use any of those skills things. Maybe because I tend to only like 3rd person past with zoomable pov so I never think about it. Actually I think I try *not* to think about different ways much, for fear of just getting totally lost in a welter of choices. The old sf conceit of the infinite possible universes, *only in one's writing*. *sweat, sweat*
Heh. Yeah. Profoundest sympathies: Fortunately, I don't have that kind of paralysis.

Yet, anyway.