Writing “Line by Line”

Do you want to be a writer but don’t have any ideas?
Are you afraid of looking like a fool?
Don’t have time to complete a project?

Then check out the blog “Line by Line”, a project to create a story one line at a time by anyone who wants to contribute.

No money down! No payments ever! No long-term commitments! No sense, at all!

At “Line by Line”, you’ll read sentences like:
“Without realizing I was doing so, my hand reached out for the vial, and Dorgon hesitated before finally releasing it to me, nervously licking his eyelid.”
and
“Instead, I pulled myself to my feet using his adam’s apple for leverage and pushing his face into the floor, such that I finally had the upper hand.”

Check it out!

This innovative new idea for building a story, line by line, day by day, was hatched by Ionia Martin and Julian Froment.

Photographer misses hockey game

One of the challenges of bringing my camera to Toronto Marlies games (farm team of the Toronto Maple Leafs) is that I barely get to see the hockey game. I am so focused on trying to get interesting pictures, that 99% of what’s happening on the ice eludes me.

The good news is that I get some really interesting shots. The better news is that the team offers a game highlight reel so I can catch up later.

This album represents only some of the best photos of the 477 shots I took (Marlies only took 31 in the game)…more are available on my Facebook page, where most of my fellow Marlies fans reside.

(SPOILER ALERT: The Marlies took the game 4-1 over the Oklahoma City Barons, farm team of the Edmonton Oilers.)

Words

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Words.

They flow so easily from your lips.

Momentary sounds of normalcy

That hold no meaning.

They change nothing,

They hide the sepsis

That slowly builds,

Pressing ever harder

Into our every morning.

I’m no better.

Eyes wrinkle in amusement,

Thoughts emerge, wrapped in softness,

Trying to hide the harshness

That lies beneath, barely hidden.

Cold feelings disguised in warm notes.

And all I can think

As I stare across the table;

The only true feeling inside

Is a solitary echo:

I can’t do this anymore.

(Image is property of owner and is used here without permission.)

Antisocial Media : A thought process

An interesting thought on the distinction between online and on-planet socialization

readful things blog

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about how many people the average person “knows” in the digital age. This post is not really so much an opinion as it is a question posed to everyone who makes use of social media, be that blogging, Facebook, Twitter, or the various other platforms out there. Do you think that we are more social or less social than we used to be thanks to technology?

What does the word social really mean? You can find plenty of definitions for it in the dictionary and plenty of different forms. The one we will use here comes from the Mirriam-Webster Dictionary. so•cial /adjective:

2. Marked by or passed in pleasant companionship with friends or associates. <An active social life>

I have met some of my very best friends (and Julian, sweet Englishman that he is) through blogging. I know these people now as “real people”…

View original post 400 more words

Jerk

CORRECTION: Earlier today we posted a comment where we recommended you “Jerk your cock liberally”…

We of course meant to inform you that you should “Jerk your chicken liberally”…

We regret our error and would like to apologize for any West Indies-themed dinner parties we may have inadvertently ruined.

Rule breakers

Broken Rules Falls to Chaos Anarchy Pieces

Oil and water do not mix because, well, they are oil and water. This is a rule. We made a cliché out of it, so it must be a rule.

And yet, it is not a rule.

Oil and water can mix. You just have to screw around with it by adding another component to the mix…an emulsifier. True, this isn’t the same kind of mixture as blue Kool-Aid plus red Kool-Aid makes purple Kool-Aid, but the colloidal suspension of oil droplets in water is still a mixture.

So what about combining oil painting with water colour painting? Anathema, you say. They are two distinct media, you cry.

So what, I respond.

Because we’ve never seen it done (or at least, I haven’t), doesn’t mean that it cannot be.

Each medium offers its own strengths and limitations, and magnificent works have been created with either. Is there a way, however, to enhance those strengths, moderate those limitations by combining the media within a single work?

Every day, new rules are created, new schools of thought founded that try to define a panoply of Art forms. This is good, as these institutions form the parameters in which new Artists learn and understand their craft.

Can you imagine the panic of being told to go make art and being given nothing to do so: no instruction, no media, no resources?

And yet, those very institutions can strait-jacket the unwary and the unthinking, as rules become commandments rather than guidelines. When any attempt to step outside of the school is med with derision, contempt and blinkered exclusion.

The very congresses and champions established to support the growth and evolution of Art can easily become the prison wardens of that Art, confining aberrant Artists in an attempt to petrify the one true form.

(By the way: The same is true for Science, where journals and textbooks are rife with examples of explorers being squashed for daring to suggest something that didn’t fit within scientific canon.)

It would be naïve and harmful to suggest that rules should not only be broken, they should be shattered. If you wrote a novel using numbers rather than letters, you might find a very small audience for your work and little understanding from peers. There is much to be said, however, for grazing, nicking or wounding the rules.

Rules should be constantly questioned, viciously challenged if Art is to evolve. Without such a challenge to the nucleotides that comprise our genetic material, we would not exist and the planet would be lifeless.

But just as we demand mutation and adaptation to facilitate Artistic evolution, so must we accept the other half of the Darwinian equation. Only those most fit to survive will. The majority of mutations and adaptations will be for naught and that Art will perish.

It is a harsh reality, but look at what it has wrought in just 40,000 years since humans first applied colour to walls.

All this to say, break some rules. Test the limits. It is your evolutionary destiny as an Artist.

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(Images are property of owners and are used here without permission and against the rules.)

Failure is not an option…it’s a skill

Fear-of-failure

I used to be terrified of failure. If I couldn’t know that I would succeed at something, I would put it off and potentially never do it.

And this was true in all aspects of life.

Driving. Dancing. Playing musical instruments. Talking to girls and later women. Athletics.

I became the best I could at one or two things—the things for which I seemed to have a natural aptitude—to avoid having to worry about being asked to do any of a thousand other things.

To me, failure was not an option. (I could spend months discussing why, but I won’t…at least, not here).

It has taken me a long time, but I have finally realized that I was only half right.

failure_success

Failure is not an option…it is an imperative.

It is a skill that I must practice time and time again in all aspects of life.

At its simplest, if I succeeded at everything to which I turned my hand, I would stop doing it.

I succeeded. I achieved my goal. What more could I hope to accomplish? Everything after that is pure redundancy and repetition.

When harnessed, however, failure and imperfection can be that thing that drives me forward, when purely creative urges do not.

ziglar

Failure is my teacher. Failure is my drill sergeant and mentor. And yes, failure can be my devil.

Perfection is an illusion and is therefore unattainable. This means that even at our zenith, we have failed. So what?

Even if we do not strive for perfection, but for an attainable, measurable goal, we are likely to fail if for no other reason than once we have achieved that goal, we instinctively move the goal posts. Our best is always a thing of the past and acts as a goad for us to do better.

Herein also lays the further challenge of failure in Art. There typically is no real metric other than external opinion. Rare is the individual who targets using 7.83% magenta in his next painting.

coyote

Wile E. Coyote is about the only artist I know who can actively test the realism of his Art. He has achieved his goal if the Roadrunner runs into the cliff wall painted to look like a tunnel. Ironically, his downfall was the hyperrealism he achieved such that the painting actually became a tunnel. In succeeding, he found failure.

Where I used to fear failure, I now embrace it. I use it to stretch myself and my skills. I use it as a lesson plan.

Failure-is-not-falling-down-but-refusing-to-get-up

But for this to work, I must envision failure as something internal and self-defined rather than something external and based on the opinions of others. There lies madness.

Yes, I rely on feedback garnered from others to determine my degree of success, but I do not allow others to define that success.

It is my Art. I define it and in doing so, define myself. And to do that, I must fail and fail again.

failure-and-success

(Images are property of owners and are used here without permission, which may be an epic failure on my part.)

It’s a sad, sad, sad, sad world

Go to YouTube and search for Sid Caesar.

Right now. Don’t wait.

I’ll still be here when you get back.

Comedy lost another titan today with the passing of Sid Caesar at the age of 91.

A man who defined television sketch comedy as we know it today.

A man who trained and/or gave voice to some of the greatest comedic minds of the 20th century, including Carl Reiner, Mel Brooks, Mel Tolkein, Danny Simon, Larry Gelbart, Neil Simon and Woody Allen through shows like Caesar’s Hour and Your Show of Shows.

A physical giant, Caesar was capable of playing the brutish husband or the nebbish boyfriend. He brought laughs and tears. And he was the first to let his co-stars shine. Stars like Imogene Coca, Nanette Fabray, Howard Morris and Carl Reiner.

I am confident that all of these people would have influenced my life in one way or another without the likes of Sid Caesar, but he formed the nexus around which my comedic galaxy spun.

Thank you, Sid. Know that you were loved.

 

Related posts:

My Favorite Life

My Creative Journey

Jonathan Winters

 

Anyone connected to Mike Myers (or his camp)?

Hey my social media community,
Anyone have a connection to Mike Myers or his camp, and would be willing to link me up or act as a go-between?
I have a screenplay for which he would be the perfect lead (in my head) and would love to make the connection.
If you do, I’d be happy to give you as many details as I can via email…and of course, all the love I can muster!
I promise…this is legitimate…no silly ideas…I have never felt so positive about a story, ever. It has everything an A-list actor could want.
Thanks for dreaming along with me….Randy
PS This is the same screenplay that WILL win the Austin Film FestivalScriptapalooza and Nicholl prizes in 2014.

Mike Myers

(Image used without permission)