John Gardner On Life and Writing #29

Quote about John Gardner: “The late John Gardner once said that there are only two plots in all of literature. You go on a journey or a stranger comes to town. Since women, for many years, were denied the journey, they were left with only one plot in their lives — to await the stranger. Indeed, there is essentially no picaresque tradition among women novelists. While the latter part of the twentieth century has seen a change of tendency, women’s literature from Austen to Woolf is by and large a literature about waiting, usually for love.” ― Mary Morris, The Illustrated Virago Book of Women Travellers



“All order, I’ve come to understand, is theoretical, unreal — a harmless, sensible, smiling mask men slide between the two great, dark realities, the self and the world — two snake pits.” ― John Gardner, Grendel

“Stars, spattered out through lifeless night from end to end, like jewels scattered in a dead king’s grave, tease, torment my wits toward meaningful patterns that do not exist.” ― John Gardner, Grendel

“What the best fiction does is make powerful affirmations of familiar truths …the trivial fiction which times filters out is that which either makes wrong affirmations or else makes affirmations in a squeaky little voice. Powerful affirmation comes from strong intellect and strong emotions supported by adequate technique.” ― John Gardner, On Becoming a Novelist

Quote about John Gardner: “It was [John Gardner’s] conviction that if the words in the story were blurred because of the author’s insensitivity, carelessness, or sentimentality, then the story suffered from a tremendous handicap. But there was something even worse and something that must be avoided at all costs: if the words and the sentiments were dishonest, the author was faking it, writing about things he didn’t care about or believe in, then nobody could ever care anything about it.” ― Raymond Carver, Call If You Need Me: The Uncollected Fiction and Other Prose


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 such as 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

Need A Laugh | Stephen Calls Bruce Willis A Liar… MISTAKE

Stephen Calls Bruce Willis A Liar… MISTAKE

Everyone knows who Stephen is . especially the spooks who live in the White House presently.

11,516,013 views the numbers live up to their standards

I would wager you will L-ur-MFAO. It caused my partner . in her study on the second floor to be disturbed by an abundance of laughter. She wanted to know why. I made contact over the intercom with the YouTube URL. I am posting it before I know the results of her reaction. [Will Post Later if their is one . I’m sure there will be later].

IF YOU NEED A LAUGH TODAY I sure did after reading The NY Times . I went so far as to call my Senators in WASH DC. Do go there . then get out quickly . can’t take a chance of contamination . the RePubs are defiantly active . diabolical rats . my apologies to all the good republicans that don’t fit in this aforementioned category . please vote against Graham’s latest attempt for the Senate & House to Repeal the Affordable Care Act A.C.A. or as the Menace Troll prefers to call it Obamacare . what he was quoted as saying in the NYTimes about Barack’s intelligence and memoir made me sick to my stomach . he is so hateful and venomous . so now that I took you on the Eleanor Rigby Train Ride toward Despair . LISTEN TO THIS VIDEO. IT’S SURE TO CHEER YOU UP QUICKLY WITH BELLY-LAUGHING LAUGHTER . COOL! – j.kiley

Weekly Writing Prompt #107

Weekly Writing Challenge
Poetry and/or Flash Fiction
September 18th 2017 | #107

DOOR Template Instructions=====================

(5) Words: | VERSE | RULE | FIGHT | RIVER | REST |

*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.🎈 🎭 ✨

Poetry Suggestions

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

Fictional Suggestions

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

***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

Proust: ‘Hands of Imperious Circumstance’

“Remembrance of Things Past”
September 17th 2017 | #116

Hands of Imperious Circumstance

“This was not to say, however, that she did not long, at times, for some greater change, that she did not experience some of those exceptional moments when one thirsts for something other than what is, and when those who, through lack of energy or imagination, are unable to generate any motive power in themselves, cry out, as the clock strikes or the postman knocks, for something new, even if it is worse, some emotion, some sorrow; when the heartstrings, which contentment has silenced, like a harp laid by, yearn to be plucked and sounded again by some hand, however rough, even if it should break them; when the will, which has with such difficulty won the right to indulge without let or hindrance in its own desires and woes, would gladly fling the reins into the hands of imperious circumstance, however cruel.”
― Marcel Proust
ghost of proust at grave

Song Tribute | Forever Young

Forever Young | Alphaville | Lyrics

Those who died too young are too many. The ones I have felt their deaths so intensely I will share photographs. For the past several Saturdays I have been paying Tribute to some of those I miss. There are others who’s deaths . I will always remember them while they were alive.

This Tribute is for James Dean. The video for the song ‘I Still Cry’ by Isle Delange was made into a tribute for James Dean as well as for River Phoenix. It is the perfect Tribute Song.

It makes me sad missing James Dean and River Phoenix. I wasn’t even alive when James Dean died in a car crash . but I was in love with a woman Sculptor who was his doppelganger.
In her awakening my feelings for her . it reinforced how deeply I felt for James Dean.

Watching ‘Rebel Without a Cause’ makes me cry for James and Natalie Wood both. They all died too young. Too many died too young. Natalie Wood is for another day. Her story is involved in too much mystery . secrets and lies . dying in a way that terrified her in life . it is why it made no sense she died in water.

I suppose doing these tributes the past few weeks has been helpful. There are those few who effect my life profoundly. It is impossible to forget them and I choose not to. I don’t want to forget them. They are part of my emotional soul and always will be.

I do hope the songs are comforting for anyone who listens. – j.kiley ’17


I Still Cry | Isle Delange | Tribute for James Dean

Haiku Review | James Rhodes | a short film


The Challenge is to write a HAIKU REVIEW after watching the short film James Rhodes. Feel free to write in Single – Couplet – Triplet Haiku Verses using 17 syllables per verse . Lines in 5-7-5 . Try to Review the short film below as close to your interpretation of what you viewed and how all your senses responded to it. Think of it as looking at a moveable painting.

If you decide to take on the HAIKU REVIEW CHALLENGE . Leave your Haiku in the Comment Section of this post on ‘the secret keeper’ . so others will be able to view what you have created. I will be posting my own HAIKU REVIEW just above the video of James Rhodes.

If this film doesn’t inspire . don’t worry. A new short film will appear every Friday for you to try your skills WEEKLY HAIKU REVIEW CHALLENGE .

Here’s to engaging in the Haiku Review Challenge | Clinks & Cheers! – j.kiley

by j.kiley

Music memories
Psychically trapped . life’s danger
Music is Freedom

© j.kiley ‘17

Best Viewing Experience Open Video Full Screen

Primavera Sounds Presents James Rhodes

Rating . . . PG (Content)
Genre . . . Narrative . Mental Health . Music
Length . . . 1m 48s

Directed by . . . Bungalow
Original Idea . . . Joan Pons
Creative Director . . . Alex Julià
Illustration & Art Direction . . . Bungalow
Character Animation . . . Bungalow . Khris Cembe
3D animation & Motion graphics . . . Bungalow
3D modeling . . . Bungalow & Xavier Torroella
Music and Sound Design . . . Nil Ciuró
Narrated by . . . James Rhodes
Commissioned by . . . Primavera Sound
Production Co . . . Igloo Films