John Gardner | On Becoming a Novelist | #9

john-gardner-on-becoming-a-novelist-cover“In the final analysis, real suspense comes with moral dilemma and the courage to make and act upon choices. False suspense comes from the accidental and meaningless occurrence of one damned thing after another.”

“One has to be just a little crazy to write a great novel. One must be capable of allowing the darkest, most ancient and shrewd parts of one’s being to take over the work from time to time. Or be capable of cracking the door now and then to the deep craziness of life itself—as when in Anna Karenina, Levin proposes to Kitty in the same weird way Tolstoy himself proposed to his wife. Strangeness is the one quality in fiction that cannot be faked.” ― John Gardner, On Becoming a Novelist
john-gardner-1933-1982
John Gardner (1933–1982) was born in Batavia, New York. His critically acclaimed books include the novels Grendel, The Sunlight Dialogues, and October Light, for which he received the National Book Critics Circle Award, as well as several works of nonfiction and criticism . including . On Becoming a Novelist. He was also a professor of medieval literature and a pioneering creative writing teacher whose students included Raymond Carver and Charles Johnson. When I worked at Bennington College in Southern VT I would often see him walking across the campus during the Summer Writing Workshops. Or when his white hair was flowing as he rode his beloved motorcycle on campus or away. – j.kiley

Weekly Writing Challenge #126

Weekly Writing Challenge
Poetry and/or Flash Fiction

DOOR Template Instructions

(5) Words: | REST | GREY | INK | ALIVE | HERE |

*A brilliant idea has been brought to my attention regarding the (5) word prompt. Please feel free to substitute any of the words with a synonym.🎈 🎭 ✨

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Poetry Suggestions
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Haiku (5 – 7 – 5)
Tanka (5 – 7 – 5 – 7 – 7)
Shadorma (3 – 5 – 3 – 3 – 7 – 5)
6 lines – no rhymes – multiple stanzas [your choice] – just follow meter
Villanelle (19 line poem[no word limit]–2 repeating rhymes & 2 refrains)… Excellent example is Dylan Thomas’s “Do not go gentle into that good night”
Nonet (9 – 8 – 7 – 6 – 5 – 4 – 3 – 2 – 1) progression downward of syllables
Cinquain (2 – 4 – 6 – 8 – 2) five-line poem on any theme – syllables
’28’ Form (4 x 7) or (7 x 4) lines & syllables or lines
Free Verse – No Limitations
See [POETRY PAGE] for further instructions

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Fictional Suggestions
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Flash Fiction (500 – 300 words)
Any Genre: Mystery – Sci-Fi – Fantasy – Horror – Literary

SUGGESTIONS FOR FLASH FICTION
***One main character
***Room for one scene
***Main conflict in first sentence
***Room for a single plot
***Room for a single, simple theme
***SHOW anything related to the main conflict
***TELL the backstory; don’t “show” it
***Save the twist until the end
***Eliminate all but essential words

Use your best judgement
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Proust: ‘What Lies Beneath’ | Remembrance of Things Past #135

What Lies Beneath

“There were some that were of so rare a beauty that my pleasure on catching sight of them was enhanced by surprise. By what privilege, on one morning rather than another, did the window on being uncurtained disclose to my wondering eyes the nymph Glauconome, whose lazy beauty, gently breathing, had the transparence of a vaporous emerald beneath whose surface I could see teeming the ponderable elements that coloured it? She made the sun join in her play, with a smile rendered languorous by an invisible haze which was nought but a space kept vacant about her translucent surface, which, thus curtailed, became more appealing, like those goddesses whom the sculptor carves in relief upon a block of marble, the rest of which he leaves unchiseled. So, in her matchless colour, she invited us out over those rough terrestrial roads, from which, seated beside Mme. de Villeparisis in her barouche, we should see, all day long and without ever reaching it, the coolness of her gentle palpitation.” ― Marcel Proust

ghost of proust at grave

Eye of the Dragon | “. . . the man who lies to the world”

“People think that a liar gains a victory over his victim. What I’ve learned is that a lie is an act of self-abdication, because one surrenders one’s reality to the person to whom one lies, making that person one’s master, condemning oneself from then on to faking the sort of reality that person’s view requires to be faked. . .The man who lies to the world, is the world’s slave from then on…There are no white lies, there is only the blackest of destruction, and a white lie is the blackest of all.” ― Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged

IN SHADOW: A Modern Odyssey | a short film Haiku Review

Haiku Review Challenge

After watching the short film IN SHADOW: A Modern Odyssey . If you take the Challenge . Write a HAIKU REVIEW leaving your Haiku in the Comment section of this post . Express the views you feel about the ‘Moveable Painting’ [as I like to refer to GREAT short films.]

If this short film doesn’t inspire . A new short will appear next Friday in our Weekly Haiku Review.

The way I write Haiku is using the 5-7-5 syllable combination . I also often write more than one verse. It is an option . not a rule. Enjoy the fun and creativity of 1st) viewing the short film . 2nd) looking for your Haiku and creating it 3rd) sharing it if you so desire.

Here’s to the Haiku Review Challenge
Cheers! – j.kiley

IS GREED REALLY IT?
by j.kiley

Treasure chests of gold
Mindless brains sucked dry . thought-less
Greed grabs life for guns

Masks replace faces
Dreams inhaled . replaced by pills
Consciousness absorbed

‘Fat Pigs’ gain hollow prize
Cash filled coffins . gun sales great
Life ends . nothing gained

© j.kiley ‘17
Haiku Triplet

BEST VIEWED WITH FULL SCREEN OPEN & VOLUME UP

IN SHADOW: A Modern Odyssey | Lubomir Arsov

Rating . . . MATURE (Not for Children)
Genre . . . Animation . Experimental . Dystopian . Drama . Horror
Length . . . 13m 0s

Embark on a visionary journey through the fragmented unconscious of the West, and with courage face the Shadow. From Shadow into Light.

“No tree, it is said, can grow to heaven unless its roots reach down to hell.”
-C.G. Jung

This film was created with earnest effort, diligence, and sacrifice. It is an urgent call to growth. If you are moved by the content, please SHARE.

Written, Directed & Produced by Lubomir Arsov
Original Soundtrack “Age of Wake” by Starward Projections
Composited by Sheldon Lisoy
Additional Compositing by Hiram Gifford
Art Directed & Edited by Lubomir Arsov
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Gallery quality ART PRINTS available here: inprnt.com/gallery/inshadow/
Film Website: inshadow.net/
Facebook: facebook.com/inshadowmovie/
Music Composers: starwardprojections.com/
Contact: light@inshadow.net

© Lubomir Arsov 2017

Appears on ‘Expats Post’ 7th February 2018