Throwback Thursday: 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. Continue reading

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Famous Rejection Letters

letterFor any aspiring writer, a rejection letter, regardless of the provenience of said letter, is one of the most dreaded of objects. In this line of work getting rejected is considered a sort of literary murder – people are knowingly destroying something you’ve spent time on, and a lot of it. But the thing is everyone got rejected, more or less. I can think of very few instances when writers found publishers/agents from the first try. Or the second, or the tenth. Continue reading

Real life

One of my favorite opening lines goes like this, “All that I write was once real life.”

It’s from Max Blecher’s last novel, The Shinning Burrow.

How do you turn real life into art? Into stories? How do you write about all the things you’d never have the courage to say out loud?

Continue reading

The boxing analogy

boxing_2_lgLet me tell you a bit about this sport called boxing. It’s tough and rough, no doubt about it. But the most difficult and painful parts are not the ones you see on TV. No, the fights themselves are just the parts that people get to see. The real fighting, the struggle, take place off-screen. The time spent practicing, hours and hours of physical training, shadow boxing, sparring. That’s the tough part. A few minutes in a ring with another fighter don’t even come close to what happens during a training. Continue reading

Why failing is (kind of) a good thing

failingThey say you can’t beat a man who doesn’t give up.

The first piece of writing I ever wrote was rubbish. And I kept on adding more rubbish. Then I wrote something else. And then someone said I was a retard. And I wanted to prove them wrong.

I’ve failed time and time again. In all aspects of life.

The first novel I self-published sold 4 copies in 4 months. It got a single 2 star review on Goodreads, and then I unpublished the damn thing.

And yet I didn’t give up.

Continue reading

Amor vincit omnia

amor

“I want love to conquer all. But love can’t conquer anything. It can’t do anything on its own. It relies on us to do the conquering on its behalf.”David Levithan

Most of my characters are hopeless romantics. Well, that’s how I’d go about defining them. Maybe they’re just idealists: they believe in something wholeheartedly, and they stay true to their version of the world, no matter what. Maybe all idealists are stubborn like that. Continue reading

Art and violence

Could art influence people in such a way that they start shooting each other? Do we absorb the violence we see in movies and video games? Do we try to apply what we see in the real world?

Interesting.

It really is fascinating to see that some people believe that we can’t really discern what’s real from what’s not, that we don’t understand that the general convention of art is that it’s not true. As close as art and the real life are, we know art only mimics real life. And it does show for a reason. To transmit a message. Continue reading