On Being Offensive...

I'm writing a book on Genesis (the biblical one) right now, and I can see that some of it will be offensive, if not highly, to some people. Particularly those I grew up with in the Southern Baptist church. So, I'm thinking a lot about the nature of "offense" these days. And this is one of the first places I've landed: It's okay to be offensive, when the reasons for the offense are strong, heart-felt, and well thought out. What doesn't work is when someone is offensive just for the sake of being offensive, because he, or she, is: 1) Bored as a Writer 2) Not Good as a Writer 3) Lazy as a Writer, or 4) All of the Above Therefore, if your heart is in it, and you truly believe the world is going

Some Days...

Some days I'm just a dung beetle pushin' balls of it 'cross the road. Just another Dum or Dee Tweedle, n' can't tell the crap from the load. I forget what I'm doing this for, can't feel my mouth for the bit. But I'm suspicious, more n' more that what I'm doin' is full of it.

Frogs, Redwing Blackbirds, and John Denver

I just spent a week in Northwest New Mexico, or Southwest Colorado, depending on which map you’re looking at. The only sounds around were frogs, redwing blackbirds, and the wind through the pines and aspens that were bursting into bloom. I’ve not known such peace and quiet in some time. The setting took me back to something in my core that I’m having a hard time comprehending. While there, I read an essay by Tony Hoagland (a poet I love) in which he used the word—among others like it—“obliquity.” I closed the book, looked at the stars, and wanted to bring him to that porch with me, sit him down, and say “Tony… Tony… such bullshit. This is why no one reads poetry." I wanted to tell John Ashbe

In All Seriousness

In all seriousness... when we treat serious subjects "in all seriousness" as writers, we lose the serious audience. If we have a dead serious message, and we deliver it deadly seriously... with never a wince, or a wink, we invoke the age-old response: You think you've got problems? The best way to get an audience to cry... and to take you seriously... is to make them laugh... out loud... at least briefly... at least once...

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