Recent posts tagged creators


Greater Expectations And All That

"Out of the corner of my eye these days I sometimes see the glimmer of a world transformed by millions of persons who expect great things from each other."

Something Said

If there's one impulse that all writers seem to share, it's the need to *say* something.

No Status Quo

I'm not happy with the idea that I haven't moved since the last time I sat down to make something.

Traveling Saylesman

John Sayles: "It's our job, I think, to look outside of what we were born into and say, 'Is what I know really all that's going on?'"

You Can't Listen To Tapes Of Yourself In The Future

You don't learn from influences by copying them, but by studying how they were influenced.


The David And Tyler Art Show

Musings on a talk between painter David Salle and Tyler Cowen.

Motives, Pure And Otherwise

What is it about writing a story that made you hell-bent on writing it, other than your urge to sign your name to it?

You May Now Stop Reading

I don't always know when to stop doing research for a project, or how to deal with coming across valuable research after the project is already closed.

My Five Steps To A Story

For the first time, I've formulated and written down the steps I take to create a story. Yours may differ.

Reinventing Wheels For No Fun (And No Profit Either)

"Let me make my own mistakes" becomes toxic when elevated to the status of a hill to die on.

The Real Problems And The Real Solutions

In creative work there are no genres or labels, but only problems and the attempts to solve them.

No One Gets Talked Out Of This (Or Into It)

If someone can talk you out of being a writer, you’re not a writer. But that doesn't mean other writers owe you anything.

And Put Away Childish Things

Or at least transcend them. How my childhood fandom interests pointed the way beyond to future creation.

Can't Stop, Won't Stop

Each book of mine has been about going a place I haven't gone yet, and seeing what I can bring back with me.

Medicine Vs. Cuisine

On reading/consuming for enjoyment vs. reading/consuming for research.

How Many Stories Do We Have Left?

How many stories do I have left? I don't know, and I want to keep the door open on that question as long as I possibly can.

The Debt I Owe To Nan Robertson

The author of a Pulitzer-winning New York Times Magazine article left me with a debt I am still trying to repay.

Liberate The Voice And Everything Else Will Follow

Liberating the voice and being able to speak as only you can, rather than through the thousand voices you've inherited from the outside, is the hardest and most essential skill.

You Don't Rise To The Levels Of Your Goals, You Fall To The Level Of Your Systems

You don't rise to the level of goals, you fall to the level of your systems.

To Write Out Of Spite

A big part of how I became a writer: I wanted to one-up my older brother.

If You Can't Trust Yourself To Write It, No One Will Trust Reading It

If you have the confidence to tackle a given thing and see it through, that by itself can be enough to fix any problems you worry it might bring with it.

The Lessons Of Contempt

On recognizing and curtailing contempt culture.

Missing Pieces

I still haven't finished the Shunga-Satori Behind The Scenes posts, and some of that is due to me having misplaced some notes I thought I had.

Validation Consternation

No question: we all like to have some validation, somewhere, some time.

Tearing Things Apart And Sticking Them Back Together

I've had to work over the years to shed my preconceptions about the artistic process, because they were formed back when I was more of an audience member than a creator.

See other creators posts for 2023