This is rewritten slightly from an essay I wrote in the late 70's for a class on the place of art in society. Much has changed since that time, and popular culture has come into its own in ways we never dreamed way back in the olden days. Today you might find me reading a romance or scifi or fantasy novel which lives on the same shelf with Woolf and Faulkner and Rushdie. But I think my argument remains valid, and that there are more pages than we dream of in which we might find pieces of ourselves to examine. Read more about Who's Afraid of Litrachure?
Why is a clipper ship called a clipper ship?
Answer: they clipped time off journey durations.
The American clipper ship, sleek and narrow with a formidable yardage of sail could convey high-value, low-volume freight at up to 400 miles per day. It was the technological apogee of the sailing ship. Combined with the telegraph it was the mid-19th century forerunner of the internet and the jet plane. Combined with a few other factors, they led to the 1850’s producing what Ben Wilson calls the Dawn of the Global Age.
A plethora of gold strikes: Read more about History of a Decade
I just opened a book my sister (in-law, but they are all sisters to me) sent me. It’s a book of short stories by P.D. James called Sleep No More. ( Side note: Great title to send to an insomniac, Lori) A nice little preface promises not only murder but also colluders, unwitting witnesses, the bad dreams of murderers, and suppressors of homicidal memories. Read more about Murder We Write
“Why make that guy a hero?” “More irresponsible behavior?” “She cooks too much.”
Those are just a few of the comments I have gotten over the years on the characters I choose to portray in fiction. The problem is, I don’t just make people up. I put real people into my stories. They aren’t perfect. They don’t make what other folks might call good decisions. Sometimes they cook.. Read more about Character Studies
In fourteen hundred and ninety-two, Columbus sailed the ocean blue.
In fourteen hundred and ninety-one, half the world didn’t even see us coming.
In two thousand and twenty-one, half of us didn’t see the other half coming.
Yeah. I see relevancies there. Read more about 1491
Writers' groups will all tell you that everybody hates a prologue. I still like this one from my second novel, Ghosts of the Heart:
Gavin Hudson narrowed his eyes against the glare of the sun. He could never quite accustom himself to the brightness of the overworld. Still, he'd been waiting for this moment for some time. She was back. He was certain of it. This time, the ascent would be worth the effort. Read more about A Prologue