A scrapbook of stuff I'm reading / looking at / listening to / thinking about. Ask me anything you can't Google.
Posts tagged "be boring"
Feb 06, 2014
The Risks Worth Taking
I wrote something about the risks worth taking for your work:
Risk in life is shooting heroin to see if it’ll make you more like Lou Reed. Risk in life is blowing your savings on an apartment in Paris so you can write The Great American Novel. Risk in life is quitting your job and losing your health insurance just so you can live some Mythical Art Life.
Risk in work, on the other hand, is risking humiliation—risking putting your work out there, risking being wrong, risking being laughed at. Risk in work is writing something that scares the shit out of you, something that might make your mother not speak to you for three years. Risk in the work is following your whims to wherever they take you, to risk not knowing where you’re going, and risking that you’ll lose members of your audience along the way.
Read the rest here.
Jan 13, 2014
I write weird stories. I don’t know why I like weirdness so much. Myself, I’m a very realistic person. I don’t trust anything New Age — or reincarnation, dreams, Tarot, horoscopes. I don’t trust anything like that at all. I wake up at 6 in the morning and go to bed at 10, jogging every day and swimming, eating healthy food. I’m very realistic. But when I write, I write weird.
Nov 15, 2013
Back [in] the Middle Ages, when artists were craftsmen and belonged to guilds…[a]rt was a job, like glassblowing. With the Renaissance came creative liberation. The artist gained sanction to develop his own character and style. “The more artists disengaged themselves from craftsmen,” write the Wittkowers, “the more they were expected to display—did display—symptoms of behavior not associated with the rank and file citizen.”
Nov 19, 2012
My autobiography would consist almost entirely of chapters about me sitting alone in a room looking at a typewriter.
Jul 02, 2012
The writing is where the action is. Joyce lived in eventful times, but he did not lead an eventful life.
Mar 02, 2012
I’m a much riskier actor than I am a person. There’s this Flaubert quote that I love, that I’m going to get slightly wrong. But it’s something about ‘I want to live - I want to live the quiet life of the bourgeois so that I can be violent and unrestrained in my work.’ That works for me. And for some reason I let myself between action and cut go into a kind of freefall, a place in a space where I am allowed to think, behave, move, appear in any way that I see fit. Unfortunately, I don’t let myself do that in my own waking life. But at least there’s some place for it.
Nov 23, 2011
The first duty of the artist is to survive.
Aug 18, 2011
» Unadventure as creation
Eno on unadventure:
“In my normal life I’m a very unadventurous person,” Mr. Eno said. “I take the same walk every day and I eat in the same restaurants, and often eat exactly the same things in the same restaurants. I don’t adventure much except when I’m in the studio, and then I only want to adventure. I cannot bear doing something again, or thinking that I’m doing something again.”
As Jacobs once said, “Differentiation emerg[es] from generality. Differentiations become generalities from which further differentiations occur.” My summer has been only about variation — in location, in people, in process — but slowed down creation here. It’s good to be home.
It’s like Flaubert said, “Be regular and orderly in your life, so that you may be violent and original in your work.” Routine is key.
Aug 09, 2011
My life is as simple as I can make it. Work all day, cook, eat, wash up, telephone, hack writing, drink, television in the evenings. I almost never go out. I suppose everyone tries to ignore the passing of time: some people by doing a lot, being in California one year and Japan the next; or there’s my way—making every day and every year exactly the same.
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