First, here’s a picture of me:
Yeah, that’s me now. More or less. I think this photo is 4-5 years old. But anyway, it’s more recent than the one before. And I was wearing cooler glasses.
In other news, I’m working on a new blog series for the next week. It’s about blogging and some of the tools I use, like Zemanta, Wordads, etc. I think it’s gonna be fun.
Now, for a question. If I were to compile my most popular essays on writing and art into an e-book, edit them, format them, add a nice cover, would anyone be interested in reading it? (the e-book that is.)
I know a lot of you have already read my about page. Some of you may want to know more. Some of you don’t even think I exist. Conspiracy theories abound as to who I am and whether or not I want to take over the world. Or just the Internet. The thing is, I’m pretty real. Also, my about page is 100% accurate.
But for anyone who’s curious to find out more, here are ten random facts about Cristian Mihai. Continue reading
This is one my favorite paintings. The Floor Scrapers by Gustave Caillebotte. Not only that I don’t know why I like it so much, but I can’t even find a message behind the painting. I can’t dissect it the way that I like to do with other paintings.
It’s just beautiful. Continue reading
Mo Yan, a Chinese writer who “merges folktales, history and the contemporary,” like Peter Englund, head of the Swedish Academy, said.
If this were a news site, I’d now add a couple of useless facts about Mo Yan. But this is not a news site, so if you want to read more, you can go here or here. But I’m going to tell you what I think about the Nobel Prize for Literature. Continue reading
Today I received this in a newsletter from Indiegogo:
“Researchers in Sweden isolated a virus that successfully attacked cancer in mice. Then, because of a lack of funding, the virus was put in a freezer before it could go to human trials. Now, a team in London is crowdfunding an effort to get the treatment ready for testing and make a potentially world-changing scientific breakthrough. If you have a million dollars and change laying around, the team will name the virus after you — but even a $25 contribution will make you a part of medical history.” Continue reading
In His Last Bow, one of Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes stories, there’s a scene that I particularly enjoyed.
At the end Holmes addresses his good friend Dr. Watson with these words, “There’s an east wind coming, Watson.”
To which Watson replies, “I think not, Holmes. It is very warm.”
And Holmes concludes with, “Good old Watson! You are the one fixed point in a changing age. There’s an east wind coming all the same, such a wind as never blew on England yet. It will be cold and bitter, Watson, and a good many of us may wither before its blast. But it’s God’s own wind none the less, and a cleaner, better, stronger land will lie in the sunshine when the storm has cleared. Start her up, Watson, for it’s time that we were on our way. I have a check for five hundred pounds which should be cashed early, for the drawer is quite capable of stopping it if he can.” Continue reading
Good morning everyone. That is, if it’s morning where you’re at. Here in Constanta, Romania the weather is superb. It almost feels like summer.
It’s days like these, when the world is slowly drowning in a mist of golden rays, that you feel like cleaning the house. Open all the windows, set the vacuum cleaner to max power. Wake up the neighbors. Continue reading
Ever read a book that was so just so good you had to tell everyone about it? So good that every sentence felt like a revelation? So good that you wished you were there, with the characters?
Well, I have. More than once. And at the end of each month I’ll recommend the best book I’ve read that month. Or re-read. And you get to do the same. Continue reading
A couple of days ago I was talking with a friend about what makes a great writer. You know, if there’s a secret ingredient that helped James Joyce or Fitzgerald write they way they did.
I honestly don’t believe in talent, in some God-given gift, or stuff like that. I, in fact, believe that talent is something people have invented. It’s just a lazy way of thinking.
You tell someone, “You’re talented.” And you think that he’s so good at what he does just because he was born that way. There’s nothing you can do about it, nothing that other person did to acquire this “talent.”
So I told my friend that great writers don’t stress too much about what they can’t do. They know what they’re good at and they stick to that. In a way, it might even seem like being lazy, but if you don’t have a certain skill to writing dialogue (which is not as much related to writing itself, but more to the way you observe the way people interact), odds are that you’ll never be able to write brilliant dialogue.
Whenever a book piques my interest, the first thing I do is go on Amazon or Goodreads and read the bad reviews.
Because, for once, I believe that by reading the bad reviews you get a better understanding of what works and what doesn’t in that particular book. Also, I’ve found that those who didn’t like the book are particularly more detailed in their reviews. They aren’t just raving about how awesome and freaking amazing that book was. And then I suppose it’s simply because I’m more likely to buy a book that also has some bad reviews. All five star reviews looks pretty suspicious (like my novel, Jazz, on Amazon.com) and I just guess that reading about a book’s flaws makes me want to buy it more. Continue reading