Jazz: A (sort of) Foreword

Writing a story resembles a journey, but neither the destination, nor the way we reach that destination are of any importance. What matters most is our ability to stop, look around, and ask ourselves, “Do I have to go any farther?”

It’s what makes us human:  we are able to test the world around us, to learn, to evolve, to adapt.

This also means that we never find what we are looking for, our journey never ends. We’re wanderers, hopelessly trying to reach a destination with the vague hope of finding that elusive grandeur, that feeling that what we’re writing is perfect or close to perfect.

I write mostly at night, and sometimes I write so furiously, my fingers fueled by ambition and dreams, that I feel that this is it. This is the time when I’ll write something beautiful. And I’m afraid to stop. Eventually I’ll get tired and go to sleep. What happens in the morning is frightening: I have to read what I wrote the night before. Sometimes I can still see my dream there, trapped by a cage of words, almost intact, still vivid and powerful. Other times my dream has withered away, and all I have left is a jumbled mess of loosely tied words – something that will require a lot of work to get right.

In my humble opinion there are two sides to writing: an artistic side, or however you wish to call it, and one that turns writers into craftsmen.

Like Hemingway said, sometimes we get lucky and write better than we can. It happens, on rare occasions, that we write brilliantly from the first draft. Or almost. We’re sitting at our desks, doing our thing, and we’re great. We’re beautiful writers, and we can imagine (well, I do) Hemingway, Faulkner, and Fitzgerald staring down at us from some cloud somewhere in Heaven and being jealous at our talent. Nothing can stop us, and thus we feel no desire to stop.

This is the artistic side of writing. The one when our fingers are tapping away so effortlessly, when words are pouring out of our minds in a cascade of beautiful metaphors. For anyone who has dealt with words for some time, these moments become almost religious in nature, because when they happen, the world around us stops. The world outside our window fades away, and we’re allowed the most sacred of processes: that of creation.

Moments of true inspiration are rare, and I’m afraid, don’t really make anyone a good writer. Because most of the time we would much rather sit on our asses and stare at a point on a wall. Most of the time, we feel there are no more words to be written. Our minds are blank, our vocabulary limited, our stories lame. We just don’t feel like it.

But this is what makes the difference: you write when you feel like it, and you write when you don’t. Maybe the first few paragraphs are awful, because you’re thinking about the rent, about taxes, about your wife being upset, about all those things you need in order to be happy. All those things that keep you from living in the present. But then something happens. Something great. You begin to write. To really write. Faster and faster, and more words come out of places you never even knew existed. And you forget about the parts that are missing and concentrate on the parts that you already have.

This is what I learned so late in my “career” as a writer (it took me almost eight years to understand it): writing is also a craft. And it requires discipline and hard work. And just like any other job, you have to show up at that desk. Whether you feel like it or not. And yes, there are days when you hate it, but then, slowly, you remember why you set out to be a writer in the first place – because you love to write.

Jazz was inspired by this great painting. It reminded me of a certain event in my past, and for a while I was happy to play with ideas, to create scenarios and settings. One night I told a friend of mine about this story I wanted to write: about a woman who had a lasting power of obsession over me during my teenage years.

She loved the idea and said that I should definitely give it a try. The thing is that she was going away for three weeks, so I decided to finish Jazz by the time she would come back. Surprise her with a first draft.

So on the first night I wrote 5,000 words. The next morning, when I woke up, I drank my coffee, smoked my cigarette, and sat at my desk to write some more.

I set out to write Jazz, owning nothing more than a few scattered images and the desire to write about Paris. I built my beautiful and mysterious woman, my young and naïve writer, and all the other characters in my story. And brick after brick I built my melancholic city.

Sometimes the characters let me in without complaining too much. I was allowed into their world the minute I punched the first keys. But other times it wasn’t like that. Other times I had to work hard to get in; I had to struggle to leave the real world behind.

Nevertheless, whether it came easy or not, I wrote each day. I never wrote on anything else during those three weeks. And when it was time to write, I did something more astonishing: I forgot about the Internet. About checking my e-mail, about watching funny videos on Youtube over and over again.

And guess what? It worked. At the end of those three weeks I had a first draft and realized that writing is not about those moments of burning inspiration. No. It’s much more about the moments when our muse has left us, when we feel weak and tired, when we don’t want to write.

Now, rarely a day goes by without me writing. A page, a paragraph, a few words that don’t even make sense.  Writing is as much about perseverance, hard work, and building a routine as anything else worth doing in this world.

What can you expect from Jazz? Is itany good? I’m afraid you’re going to have to find out for yourself. I don’t know if there are questions, or answers, or lessons to be learned. I only know what I have gained by writing it.

***

P.S. Jazz is pretty much ready. Now I’m just tweaking small bits – basically it’s me being a master procrastinator. And because I fear that I might spend too much time on it, and then I’ll get weary and scared about people reading it, I’m setting a release date.

25th of July. This year, of course. You can also check my lame blurb here.

About these ads

132 comments on “Jazz: A (sort of) Foreword

  1. I am having one of those moments currently with my writing from lack of inspiration…I have heard the process of most writing from the long time writers is more like chopping wood…..chop it and stack it chop stack it…etc.till you get it completed then let set it aside for awhile and come back to it to do the rework and revisions . I do tend let myself get distracted on purpose ..I am trying to do better with that..so I am gonna stop commenting now and get to work…

  2. Great post, but I think inspiration comes more easily than most think if we're present and living in the moment…don't you?

  3. You are an inspiration, good sir, and are making me try harder to write.

  4. Inspiring! Good luck on your editing!

  5. Hi Cristian, I think you summed up my thoughts on how writing is both art, craft and work – all in one. I have those same days, when almost puffed up at my own self-importance, I feel I've achieved something amazing – only to re-read and do-over just a 24 little hours later.

    I find that my writing is as much about sitting down to get on with it, even when tired, hungry and doubting, as it is about the muse.

    Great post! – Looking forward to reading Jazz.

  6. Inspiration does strike–I'm thinking of Coleridge's "Kubla Khan," and how he wrote the initial lines after waking from a dream. But he left it unfinished because he was interrupted by a visitor and could not recall the remaining lines from his dream. But you do have to be present to act. I guess you also have to accept two truths: 1) Much of what you write will be less than stellar, and 2) You will have to work to make it better. I quoted Beckett's Motto in one of my early posts:

    “Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better.”

  7. Thank you for sharing this! It's always a great reminder to know that creatives must also work hard to produce inspired works. Setting a time limit on getting out a first draft of a story is great idea that I will soon try!

  8. shovonc says:

    Don't worry. You frequently write something beautiful.

  9. Your attitude towards writing reminds me of Tchaikovsky's attitude towards composing:"I sit down to the piano regularly at nine-o'clock in the morning and Mesdames les Muses have learned to be on time for that rendezvous." And another quote of his: "A self-respecting artist must not fold his hands on the pretext that he is not in the mood." Great post!

  10. j3ssi33ss3x says:

    I love your no nonsense style of writing, and the cover for "Remember" is very interesting in design and style. I am curious to see what is inside and maybe I will have to purchase the e-book to find out.

  11. bsgstorytime says:

    Fellow procrastinator,

    Here is a word of encouragement for when you feel "weary and scared about people reading it":

    We want to read it!!

    The description of Jazz has seduced me. Looking forward to it's release!

    Heidi

    ps. I forget in which post on self-publishing you mentioned that trying to sell your book to other self-publishers isn't a great idea… I agree.

    …but sometimes they come looking for you ;)

  12. fairasta says:

    Wow, you are such a good writer!!! I hope that by reading your work, a little of it can rub off on me xD

  13. Wonderful post! You captured so much of how writers work and create. Thank you!

  14. simplysands says:

    I like how you write, what I have read in your blog is always inspirational. I'm sure Jazz will be a great book.

  15. krissnp says:

    Even later it would be foolish to sound wiser in your writing.

  16. hkremer says:

    I love your writing!

  17. rixlibris says:

    Your description of the process is spot on in so many ways. In my writing I cannot begin until I have the ending. From that point it's all about letting the characters tell me how they got to that final page.

  18. willofheart says:

    This post is really inspiring specially for all the writers, God Bless….

  19. Jnana Hodson says:

    The initial draft is one thing.

    The revisions, quite another.

    Once I embraced that distinction, I found drafting to be liberated from any attempts at perfection. It became more of a matter of running with the thoughts as they appeared and letting the big picture appear.

    Revisions, too, have become liberated. A matter of let's follow this detail to see where it leads or of asking myself just what's under that rock or bed. In my poetry, especially, this has been happening as I've been "working in series," expanding from a few related pieces.

    Another thing I'm finding: The practice of writing can be a lot like the practice of prayer. It's to be done without any expectation of rewards or public approval, but rather for the intimate relationship of wonder and harmonious discovery or even those painful moments of truth as they unfold in the mirror.

    Or, as Bukowski added, regular butt time.

  20. Kate Loveday says:

    Ernest Hemingway once said, "There is no such thing as great writing, there is only great re-writing." How true this is. I try to remember it when I am doing my tenth re-write as I struggle to make a passage as near to perfect as I can. We wouldn't be writers if we didn't experience both euphoria and despair. You do well, Fear not!

  21. Interesting thoughts perspective. Inspiration comes to each of us in a very personal way.

  22. You sound like a very witty, articulate, talented writer. This is amazing.

  23. harpethview says:

    My, you are good! You are a good writer and you are a good teacher. Surely enjoy your posts!

  24. Abi says:

    You are a huge inspiration!……. all the best with the tweaking…. :-)

  25. Another Quintus ™ user! And an excellent article: "…you write when you feel like it, and you write when you don't." says it all about as well as it can be said.

  26. You have a wonderful writing "voice" and I very much enjoyed this article!

  27. Carol Ross says:

    I love this article! I'll feinitely have to read Jazz when it comes.

  28. Carol Ross says:

    I mean I'll DEFINITELY have to read Jazz when it comes!!

  29. Lashauna D. Hinton says:

    Nice inspiration! Good luck with your #StabbyLove!! :))

  30. I completely agree and relate to this post 100%. I now see the characters, plot, and settings of my stories as alternate universes that I have the pleasure of narrating for a moment in time and compiling them into a story format. It makes me wonder "What if someone could write my life? What would they say and describe? Better yet, which moments would they choose to say?"

    It makes much more fascinating and personal to write my characters and plots. It's easy to forget the passion for writing when the zest of life can be bleak and dark. Thanks for the reminder this is a craft and my fingers are the builder of degrees of written wonders.

  31. jameselmore says:

    Beautiful advocation for the creative process: the sacred timeless presence, the right-brain freeflow and the left-brain construction, you nailed it. Congrats on your book, I look forward to reading more of your writing.

    James

  32. It just happens. Sometimes we write well, and sometimes, no matter how much we try we just cannot.

  33. What a beautiful passage! I agree with your description of writing, and I have also felt that pain when there are no words to be found. Good luck with Jazz!

    Yulia

  34. Greg Camp says:

    Stephen King makes a similar point in "On Writing": His muse is an old guy who sits in the corner, smoking a cigar. He occasionally tosses King some help, but only when the author has been doing the grunt work for a while. Which is to say, the gods help those who help themselves.

  35. Cindy @ In A Stitch says:

    I thoroughly enjoyed reading this.

  36. Osmond says:

    There is a very musical quality to your work, I'm digging it. I just finished reading Momento Mori, so now the rest of you is joining my backlog.

  37. Great writing! I enjoyed your "Mr. Nobody."

  38. Ann Marquez says:

    Exactly! Excellent post ;) Best wishes with Jazz!

  39. bejamin4 says:

    I totally agree that writing is about determination. It took me a long time to realize that reading others work wasn't writing my work. Even still I have trouble many times. I love how you say we need to write even when we don't feel necessarily compelled to write.

  40. laveeir17 says:

    Wow! It's inspirational how you've embraced writing. Kudos to you. =) Good luck with Jazz.

  41. I love it when my fingers just go to town typing out my thoughts. However, if I didn't do extreme editing well…..it probably wouldn't make sense.

  42. That strange energized flow of creativity can come at any time. I once leaped out of bed in the middle of the night and typed furiously for half an hour in a crazed attempt to get the best idea ever onto paper before I lost it. I woke the next morning to pages and pages of unintelligible gibberish. In my cotton-headed, drowsy state,I had had my fingers on the wrong keys.

  43. laniersmith says:

    "What matters most is our ability to stop, look around, and ask ourselves, “Do I have to go any farther?”' That really spoke to me. It's all about knowing when to leave the party. Loved the post.

    ciao

  44. "All those things that keep you from living in the present." For personal reasons that I am going through right now this sentence was the touchstone moment for me. "Touchstone" in the sense that something 'sparked ' for me regarding the struggle to continue or to be pulled away from joy by 'real' issues and concerns. Thank you for this!

  45. Oh, how I recognize myself… a beautiful, poetic description of the almost compulsive need to express oneself. :) http://jennywickman.wordpress.com

  46. Great post! I'm inspired to try harder and not give up, even when I'm tired and don't feel like it. Thanks!

  47. tchistorygal says:

    As usual, a great post! So today, at least for now, my responses to my comments are my writing for the day. Thanks for visiting my site regularly. I enjoy reading yours as well. I found out that I can't post comments on your site from other computers, so I hope this one goes through. Thanks again for being a faithful reader. :)

  48. El Guapo says:

    That's a heck of a story. You make some interesting observations about the craft vs the art of writing.

    For me though, the question isn't "have I gone far enough", but "have I expressed myself clearly". If not,sometimes I can fix it in editing, sometimes I have to scrap i and start again.

    Great post, and congrats on your upcoming publication!

  49. fouter says:

    Even though I'm a painter, what you're talking about is very much the true realisation I've have had to come to terms with in creating my own work. Thanks for the post It was very refreshing!

  50. kolembo says:

    Hey! Great writing, beautiful, beautiful – look all the artists you've touched!

    You express what we all try to, and for me, at least, i can sleep now!

    Good stuff.

    http://kolembo.wordpress.com/2012/07/01/short-poe

  51. petit4chocolatier says:

    I really enjoy your writing! ~ judy

  52. derek222 says:

    This was an outstanding and remarkable blog. Everything you said about the struggles of writing I feel all the time. Im struggling with the same things right now and am having the hardest time overcoming them. I havent tried what you mentioned though, closing everything else out and just force myself to write. Im also working on writing a book. Its started as a short story but its began to become more, but at times, more times than not it seems latley, I am at a loss for words, I have this idea in my head but I just cant get it into words and create what i have in mind. I get frustrated and tend to walk away feeling down, like Ill never get anywhere near finished.

    This blog has given me inspiration again, and I thank you for that.

  53. patgarcia says:

    Hi,

    I enjoyed reading this. Your analogies of what writing is is so true. I experience it myself. I am a early morning, late night writer. My characters start talking to me around four AM. They give me a break around 5 PM and then they start talking to me again around 9 PM. I have learned to sleep less and feel good about it. The desire to sit there and write, if only one sentence is food for living.

    Ciao,

    Patricia

  54. athenabrady1 says:

    how eloquently put your journey through writing, I look forward to reading your finished book. Well done, I really enjoyed your post.

  55. Berna says:

    You capture the ecstasy of moments of being "in the zone," and the agony of coming back to the zone after a period of abstinence. Well done.

  56. kmonkee9213 says:

    Beautifully written! I can easily relate to your moments of hatred and love for writing.

  57. Wow. Challenging. Inspiring. I'll be back!

  58. angels2send says:

    nice writing, i like your thoughts. hemingway also said that a writer needs leisure, lots and lots of leisure. hours staring into the clouds or out to sea. when i was young i used to study his sentences, and those of chekhov´s. they are there for us and we are blessed.

  59. Lois Eighmy says:

    It's funny how many aspiring writers think they can just sit down and bang out a masterpiece in one shot. It just doesn't work that way. We've got to put a lot of blood and sweat and tears into every word. We might spend weeks, months, or even years on it, but in the end, it will all be worth it, because the experience will have caused us to grow.

    Excellent post! :)

    ~L

  60. Elena says:

    I completely agree with "that feeling that what we’re writing is perfect or close to perfect". Every time I read something that I have written for the first time I want to cry and somehow start making trashy comments. Then, when I revisit my work after some days it does not look that bad at all… In fact, revisiting works after some years, I cannot believe I wrote what I did.

    Thanks for making writers not feel alone on their writing :)

  61. onestreetshy says:

    I like this very much and like all of the others reading your blog, I can relate somewhat. Although, there are days I still stare at a point on the wall for what seems like hours…

    “It's none of their business that you have to learn how to write. Let them think you were born that way.”― Ernest Hemingway

  62. Dante says:

    Wow, July 25 is nearly here. I wish it will be available here in the Philippines. Good luck and keep writing!

  63. Suddenly, on June 27th, from 2.00 am to 7.00 am, 3 commentators really caught it. They landed the fish they momentarily owned: (should be italised) your writing. They bought the portrait you wrote and ascribed their own feelings onto it, and it is precisely for that that (heh heh) one must blow the endless smoke rings, drift in and out of youtube and permanently try to give up whiskey. I loved the other comments too, of course, and who wouldn't? After all, they, we, read your work.

    And so to you sir, I tip one of my long lost hats, left, as one does, in small restaurant of the imagination, probably in a city like Buenos Aires, Bucharest, Berlin or Bogota, where one's characters can be observed plotting, whispering, furtively glancing and whispering again through the cigar smoke, one's pen can be reassuringly patted in the top left corner pocket, and both the tall waitress with the tango eyes and the barman with the silver cigarette lighter..on..off..on..off.. can be seen discussing the next stage of the narrative, story, discourse, chain of events or simply page; They are, in fact, actually talking about the writer who is in turn trying to hear; after all, he or she is supposed to be writing the story, isn't s/he?

  64. herminestrand says:

    You really are very lyrical, and I envy you the smooth writing style. What you describe about writing being both art and craft is as close to being a universal truth as mortals can understand. Nothing replaces the joy of the wordspill (as a long-lost fellow writer called it), but writing also takes work. You don't mention anything about the mind-numbing tedium of heavy editing, cutting and pasting passages in order to move them around, proofing for nits, pondering negative feedback when the critic sounds like they just don't understand, pondering positive feedback when the critic is a big enthusiast of your current draft and you're afraid they (and you) are just plain wrong. I reserve the right to hate doing such things. They are part of the writing craft, but I am not obliged to love them just because I must do them. The wordspill just makes them worthwhile, because without them nobody will ever get to read what I wrote, and that would be a terrible injustice. Or so I think, as every writer does. Regards from a loyal follower.

    • On about three different occasions I felt the urge to call editing "a necessary evil," but somehow I resisted it.

      The thing is that it's something you get used to it. Like a chronic pain or something. The pain is still there, it never goes away entirely, but it's much more bearable.

  65. Cristian. I am so INSPIRED! I feel your words and your turmoil. I have felt the same. I write so I do not forget most times, a moment, a feeling, an inspiration. I actually started my blog because I need an outlet for my thoughts and feelings. Sometimes there is too much in my head to contain. I am inspired to write more. I am hoping someone is inspired by my words, but even if they are not it is a good healthy outlet for me.

    I wish you INSPIRED writing!

  66. As the others have all said, this is a beautiful post and aptly sums up the challenge of writing – writing when your muse isn't holding your hand and urging you on. Elizabeth Gilbert gave a great TED talk about it, which sounds much like Tchaikovsky's approach. You have to show up and then it's on the muses whether they come or not. But, the writer must be there every day.

    I wish you every success with your upcoming release!

  67. Stalin used to call writers ''Engineers of the Soul'', apparently of course. Interesting tag, that one. I do like the 'engineer' part. Personally I think the only part of the process that is really appealing is the editing, for many reasons: for a start you know you're nearly finished, and you're facing a full page, not an empty one, or there's a full page in front of you, never to be emptied again…or…yes, it can be a nightmare! I think inspiration is one of the key features of your blogs. I am keen to see, read and enjoy 'Jazz'.

  68. Another wonderful Hemmingway quote.

  69. I enjoy this blog and comments very much – especially the Hemingway quotes I find here for the first time. Wonderful!

  70. Wow what a great post and inspirational piece, thank you for digging in deep and sharing that with us all, its not about the journey for sure, but it is interesting to read about yours all the same. Bonne continuation.

  71. 8teen39 says:

    I kept telling myself for almost a year now that I'm so close to picking up pencil and paper again. But this post has just pushed me over the edge, off my fat duff- which was getting fatter by the minute. My wife gave up pushing me about 6 months ago. I hate to tell her you succeeded where she failed. Maybe we don't have to tell her? Thank you for the inspiration.

  72. Red Toenails says:

    Writing is like a great, torrid love affair – hot, cold, in, out and love hate. But you come right back to it in the end.

  73. slainia says:

    I've only read this one entry so far, but you had me with the first line. So much of this you've described things I've struggled with – I guess I'm not alone :p Whenever l think of writing, I lean towards the artistic side, as you call it – if l don't have something l can *feel* within the first few lines or what have you, I get frustrated and give up. It does make poetry slightly easier, but the entire concept is one of frustrated infatuation. Why do we love it so?

    Actually – maybe that's a good point. starting off with something shorter, with a definite expectation to it, might be worthwhile. Anyway, you have a great post here, as so many have already said…

  74. Squelsch says:

    When I was still in grade school, I remember watching a video about the life of an author. She said "the writer never waits for inspiration to come to them." I hated that saying, because who would want to write without being inspired? I think you put that into a pretty good perspective for me. Thanks.

  75. ehehevan says:

    This is great stuff! It's wonderful to hear how jazz influences people's lives. I work with KPLU 88.5 FM in Seattle, WA. We are a jazz station and after reading your post I'm sure you would love some of the stuff we play. Check it out… http://www.kplu.org/term/jazz-blues and check out http://jazz24.org/ while you're at it. I'm sure you'll love it!

  76. lyndart says:

    What stifles our creativity the most is our internal critic who judges every mark we make. Writing is a pull between two worlds according to Colleen Mariah Rae in "Movies of the Mind": the critic and the storymaker's realm.How do you turn off the critic?

  77. emmamccoy says:

    Thank you for reminding me why I love to write.

  78. Summit10 says:

    what a wonderful read! i do agree with you that there are times that we find ourselves blanked out with nothing to extend in the tips of our fingers from our brain, what I do is just do random research when time permits,I keep myself some rough paper insode my bag or input it in my phone even when I'm commuting from work for me to input even simple ideas and to get it included in my blogs. All the best! Cheers :)

  79. Many lessons and inspiration I find in this (foreword). Jazz would be a enticing read, I can imagine. Love & Light…

  80. Wow, it's a lightbulb moment for me! I love the art part of writing and will work on the discipline of writing when I don't feel like it. Great post!

  81. Maxxy says:

    " hopelessly trying to reach a destination "

    You're right. I am currently in the studio trying to co-write three tracks from musical concepts that up to now I've never been able to finish. I thought I just wanted some kind of closure, but when I start getting close to finishing the tracks, I find it's not enough……it's now a journey, rather than a destination…..

  82. Livvy Ospry says:

    I feel that lack on inspiration too and try to keep writing. Looking forward to reading more of your work.

  83. Lately when I have not felt inspired to write I have been challenging myself to take one-liners out of my mind (usually lines – humorous to me – that have come from my observations) and have attempted to make a good story out of those observations. It's been a fun challenge! When I was a reporter I had to do this (take an assignment and make a story out of it) everyday. I miss that challenge.

  84. Thanks for the post. It's a great one . . . you said it well.

  85. TheGreatPlainsPoet says:

    I too try to take me observations and put some depth and insight to what I am observing. I find that I need to take it just a little further by examining how that insight is affecting me and what I might learn from it. This was a well thought out entry. I really enjoyed it. Nice work.

  86. Cobblestone says:

    I do not write for anything like a living. Well, I do – but it is an entirely different kind of writing, in terse precise business-ese. But I know that I do have to write a little once in a while – with the writing surfacing now and then between other small islands of blog posts and what have you.

    So I do recognise the two emotions of writing as you so aptly describe them. I'll look for Hemingway up in the clouds once in a while – but from the sound of it, you have a markedly better chance of spotting him. Give him my best :)

  87. Spider42 says:

    An insightful, well written and (for me) undeniably true post – kudos on your breakdown of a writers inspiration and what it is to BE a real writer.

    Cheers.

  88. brijesht says:

    Reblogged this on A blog by BrijeshT and commented:
    good piece on the 'art' of writing

  89. Thank you for this post. Very well written and very inspireing to me as well.

  90. This has really inspired me! I have so many stories and ideas which I need to formulate and get published, but I keep holding back for some reason. This has helped me to put some of my thoughts into perspective.

  91. tauromaja says:

    I'm a triathlete who's lost her mojo (the writing, however, is going pretty well) and I have been in that low place where writing doesn't come out as nicely as it should. I just read Murakami's "What I Talk About When I Talk About Running" and he describes the process that he goes through as a sort of exercising his mind. You have to train yourself to write daily and work at it. It doesn't come naturally to him, which is amazing to read, especially from someone as prolific.

  92. lovepages77 says:

    The whole imagery of the great writers from above, gathered around, oh! Can relate to that, I also have that dream at times… try to keep them friends though, no envy, no gelousy, don't want that, its no competition, so I converse with them instead… :-) Just wanted to add that the rutine doesn't take away the charm of writing, nor the artistry or the craftman_thing in it, it just adds a bit of a marital engagement to it! A ring. But being married to pages and ink is an experience that's so freeing one can't possibly see a cage in it!

  93. Your writing is so inspiring, and you seem to put a whole new twist on things. I've been trying to write a book for ages now, but just like you said, the dream has fizzled away, so I never really get past writing the 3rd chapter!

  94. Fati says:

    This entry particularly connected with me. I have those moments, in which I don't think, but the pen moves across the paper. And in the end, when I look at it, I can't believe that was really me. But such writings actually make things more difficult, because they are not something I would show the world even though I want to. Ironic, really, since those are some of the best things I have ever written.

    On a second note, I agree with you when you say writing is much about perseverance. Though I haven't been able to make myself write regularly, I'm trying to get there.

    Great post!

  95. pixilated2 says:

    This could be the best explanation of writing process and inspiration I have yet read. Thanks. Cristian!

    ~ Lynda

  96. realitateasimplaoffi says:

    First off, the inspiration and power that was just put into this post is extraordinary. Such vivid words placed into the correct order. Thank you. and second, I find that the process in which the words will glide onto paper easily rather hard, because that's not always the case. Some days I might sit in front of my desired area and write. Whatever comes into my mind at that moment, no thinking and just writing whatever comes to mind. Some people may argue that this is impossible for they bring up the point of needing an idea before the actual writing begins. But you my friend have said it with perfection, writing is an art and sometimes it can be hard, but it eventually all comes together.

    Sincerely,

    -B

  97. Wow, this post actually sent shivers up my spine because I am living this right now. I have always come by inspiration easily but I am only now learning the value and challenge of truly treating writing as a craft, to be practised and learned. I also fear those moments when what I felt was genious at the time of writing turns out to need much weeding and compost when I reread in the morning. You've inspired me to follow your blog as I feel I can learn much from what you share. Thank you.

  98. Charlene says:

    the painting that inspired your story – brilliant. I can picture the melancholic city you write about just by looking at it. I love how art inspires art. Thanks for sharing your insights on the writing life – it's encouraging to hear as I'm just starting to embark more seriously on creative writing and already find myself struggling to fight through the many days of non-inspiration.

  99. thefictionme says:

    good luck… and good luck on making money on the book.

  100. theheartofi says:

    Ohhh mann, this is deep! I mean just this one post has got me wanting to follow you and ask you to be my mentor. I was researching on writing and I found out it is important to read a lot. You're books are going to be in my list of reads and I am making it a point to remember your name. You have encouraged me so much. Thank you…

  101. Wow very inspirational piece about Jazz music. Very nicely written, I'm impressed! Inspiration comes from everywhere and you never know when the next piece will fall together. Sometimes when writing music, listening to different music is all the inspiration and desire someone needs to go to the next level. Music has wonderful powers. Good article!

  102. You're a talented writer Cristian. Thanks for the inspiration. I really need to spend more time at my keyboard. I tend to get a bit lazy. I look forward to reading Jazz.

  103. M.D. Sanchiz says:

    You write so beautifully. Even this blog post is beautifully written. I can't wait until Jazz comes out!

  104. This was wonderful! I love how you describe that moment of inspiration as the artistic side. I completely agree, but it is what we do when our inspiration leaves that makes us the writers we aspire to become. I think I shall revisit this whenever I feel that I have lost my way through writing my stories. Thank you so much for posting something so thoughtful and eloquent!

  105. kayfroebel says:

    I absolutely adore the way you write. It is almost poetic and really pulls you in. I very much enjoyed reading it, and now I am off to explore more of your posts. Thank you for sharing!

  106. angrygaijin says:

    Cool job on the book, yo! :)

  107. Dear Christian,

    I am inspired.

    Perfect words, perfect timing.

    ;)

    Lisa

  108. kenneturner says:

    Reblogged this on Becoming is Superior to Being and commented:
    This is a very inspirational post. I too try to write a little everyday, or when I feel like it, most of which is in Word file notes. I'm not skilled in writing, but that doesn't stop me from sharing from time to time. The important thing is to create, whether one has talent or not. — kenne

  109. Love the post. I find myself writing in the wee hours as well. I'm actually writing now. My mind is not as guarded at this time of hour, primarily because I'm tired. There are some words, phrases, plot twists, and endings that my mind would definitely tell me to avoid if I wrote them earlier in the evening. In the wee hours, I write with my heart primarily and include every intimate detail of my experiences and thoughts. I usually come up with something pretty cool. Or I end up writing something really crazy, get a real good kick out of it, and file it away in a folder named DO NOT USE.

    Again, enjoyed the post.

  110. I feel like I am going to need to read this over and over again. You've captured both that magical moment when everything flows perfectly and I can definitely use the reminder to just keep writing even when it doesn't.

  111. tchistorygal says:

    Been there! Sometimes I read what I wrote, and think, "Who in the world wrote that?" Other times. … So thanks for you advice on words and work.

  112. II very much needed to read this. Thank you for putting so eloquently what my professors never have. It's funny, when I am struggling with the paragraphs, to get the words on the page, I'm even more proud of the word count than I am when it's flowing fine.

  113. darknight77 says:

    Truly exceptional thinking my friend!

  114. Keep up the writing, it speaks louder than a voice.

  115. Dave Brisbin says:

    You captured the writer's experience perfectly here.

  116. LadyGrave says:

    Cheers. This was something I needed to hear today.

  117. Mil says:

    Writing when we want to and when we don't. There's a third option of course: writing when we can't help it.

    :-)

    There's a blogpost I wrote back in January this year. It keeps on getting visited by people you'd not expect to be at all interested. I re-read it the other day because of the interest it seemed to be getting. And I thought to myself, where on earth did I get those ideas from?

    In the end, everything we write is part of a whole. We deserve recompense for what we add, but we also should be humble enough to understand what we owe to others in those ideas we seemingly produce from nowhere.

    That's the beauty and glory of writing in a nutshell, don't you think?

    My summer reading-list is as long as my arm already, Cristian: but I'm afraid after reading what you wrote above, back in June, I'm going to have to add "Jazz" to those virtual bookshelves forthwith.

    So many books. So little life …

  118. Cool. As John Coltrane once said: You are what you play!

  119. coastingnz says:

    LOVE your insight puts it all into perspective – thanks!

  120. aimlessthinkgirl says:

    I know exactly what you mean — EXACTLY what you mean — when you talk about writing. You hit the nail on the head.

  121. What's funny: I often write while listening to my favorite genre of music – which happens to BE jazz.

  122. Rachael says:

    A very well-written post and one with which I entirely agree. The craft of writing appeals to me. My problem is I can spend far too much time tweaking what I have already written rather than getting new stuff down on the page. The discipline of writing something new every say is one I have yet to acquire.

  123. yipe says:

    Wow, your allusions to how sometimes writing can be challenging reminded me of this quote:

    "It goes without saying that no writer waits for what people who are not writers call inspiration" – Nadine Gordimer

  124. Great post! Definitely words to live (and write!) by…Thanks Cristian!

  125. TrishRena' says:

    Very interesting. I would love to read Jazz.

  126. Estelle_0630 says:

    Christian, I delight in reading your work. It's real; how very rare in the world today. Thank you!

    Namaste,

    ~ Estelle

  127. Liz Gray says:

    I absolutely love the way you write and the PROCESS of writing. I espec. love paragraph #4…sometimes I feel like that…I stay up ALL NIGHT and think this creation is so beautiful, and then sometimes what I feel is "my best" work is never read, but the stuff I think is ho-hum is more popular. I most struggle w/battle to write true or write to be popular. But in the end, my heart wins every time: write true! Love it Christian!

  128. ” there are two kinds of writers: poets and liars” :)

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s