Another collection of people being kind.
TEARS I LOVE KIND PEOPLE
*makes a decision to try to be one of these*
There’s no shortage of essays on writing out there. Authors, poets, scholars and other creative voices spend years devoted to their art - it’d be crazy (and our loss) if they never took a moment to talk about the why and how. These five essays are available to read online for free, and they’re exceptionally useful and inspiring for young and aspiring writers.
Despite Tough Guys, Life Is Not the Only School for Real Novelists by Kurt Vonnegut Jr.This one is short, but it’s an important topic. When you read a lot of writing by the creative geniuses of the past - the ‘tough guys’, as Vonnegut calls them - like Hemingway who learned and crafted their voice through living, learning to write your own stories from classes (and from guides and advice online) can seem less honest or worthwhile. Vonnegut strikes that thought down. “The primary benefit of practicing any art, whether well or badly,” he writes, “is that it enables one’s soul to grow.”
Why I Write by Joan Didion“In many ways writing is the act of saying I, of imposing oneself upon other people, of saying listen to me, see it my way, change your mind. It’s an aggressive, even a hostile act,” This essay by the author of The Year of Magical Thinking starts, “You can disguise its qualifiers and tentative subjunctives, with ellipses and evasions—with the whole manner of intimating rather than claiming, of alluding rather than stating—but there’s no getting around the fact that setting words on paper is the tactic of a secret bully, an invasion, an imposition of the writer’s sensibility on the reader’s most private space." Written in the 70s, the rest of the essay covers some of the barest truths about storytelling and why we do what what we do, centered around the idea that we write novels to find the answers we ask ourselves.
Fail Better by Zadie SmithIn the tradition of the two essays before it, Fail Better talks about what it means to write and what you’re asking for from yourself (and the reader) when you do. Zadie Smith discusses failure as a concept for novelists, and the indeterminate “they” we can fall into traps trying to please. Smith’s most powerful insight comes when she breaks down the connection between the author and the reader, and the reader’s responsibility: “Readers fail when they allow themselves to believe the old mantra that fiction is the thing you relate to and writers the amenable people you seek out when you want to have your own version of the world confirmed and reinforced. That is certainly one of the many things fiction can do, but it’s a conjurer’s trick within a far deeper magic. To become better readers and writers we have to ask of each other a little bit more."
Where do you get your ideas? by Neil GaimanNeil Gaiman’s writing advice isn’t hard to come by. Thanks to the internet and the author’s willingness to embrace social media, you can find nuggets of wisdom doled out by the American Gods author from essays to tumblr asks on Gaiman’s blog. In it, he talks about every writer’s worst nightmare: “My idea of hell is a blank sheet of paper. Or a blank screen. And me, staring at it, unable to think of a single thing worth saying, a single character that people could believe in, a single story that hasn’t been told before. ”
Not-Knowing by Donald Barthelme“The not-knowing is crucial to art, is what permits art to be made,” Barthelme, author of The Dead Father, writes, “Without the scanning process engendered by not-knowing, without the possibility of having the mind move in unanticipated directions, there would be no invention.” Barthelme’s mastery of words is clear in this essay. Famous for his playful post-modern style, he leads you through his concept of the art from the very first line (one that defines our site and mission, for all its simplicity) - “Let us suppose someone is writing a story."
The ultimate dad joke compilation
Downs Designs produces jeans, capri pants and shirts for individuals with Down syndrome, a genetic disorder that leaves patients with developmental delays and intellectual disability. Patients with Down syndrome are physically built differently than other people, and as a result often lack access to well-fitting clothes, furthering negative perceptions of people who have the disorder and increasing the condition’s social stigma.
This is amazing
"I saw this elderly gentleman dining by himself, with an old picture of a lady in front of him. I though maybe I could brighten his day by talking to him.
As I had assumed, she was his wife. But I didn’t expect such an interesting story. They met when they were both 17. They dated briefly, then lost contact when he went to war and her family moved. But he said he thought about her the entire war. After his return, he decided to look for her. He searched for her for 10 years and never dated anyone. People told him he was crazy, to which he replied “I am. Crazy in love”. On a trip to California, he went to a barber shop. He told the barber how he had been searching for a girl for ten years. The barber went to his phone and called his daughter in. It was her! She had also been searching for him and never dated either.
He proposed immediately and they were married for 55 years before her death 5 years ago. He still celebrates her birthday and their anniversary. He takes her picture with him everywhere and kisses her goodnight.
Some inspiring things he said;
"I was a very rich man. Not with money, but with love"
"I never had a single argument with my wife, but we had lots of debates"
"People are like candles. At any moment a breeze can blow it out, so enjoy the light while you have it."
"Tell your wife that you love her everyday. And be sure to ask her, have I told you that I love you lately?"
Be sure to talk to the elderly. Especially strangers. You may think that you will brighten their day, but you may be surprised that they can actually brighten yours.”
For all my beautiful followers and everyone else going through a hard time. I’m here for you and I love you.
I took a screenshot from Sword in the Stone and painted over it a little bit. Really fun way to jump right in and practice lighting. Hope I get some time to do more of these!
The twentieth anniversary edition of the Princess Bride has one of the nicest ambigrams I’ve seen
I have this same copy. So pretty and at the same time so annoying to my OCPD.
There is nothing more painful than a book arriving damaged.
I feel you’re pain. I ordered two books online and one of them came to me with heat-caused bubbles on parts of the cover. So sad. :C
THIS IS HOW THE BRITISH PRESS RESPONDS TO THE KILLINGS OF DISABLED CHILDREN. All of these extracts were taken from UK news websites. the final tweet is in response to a now-deleted tweet from politician Sandy Kaylan, who praised a mother for ‘euthanising’ her infant children
tania Clarence, 43, admitted to smothering three of her children, all of whom suffered from physical disabilities. Regardless of the circumstances that led to their tragic deaths, these methods of reporting are unethical and go against the British editors code of practice - which states that, once proceedings are active, the press cannot publish any material that could create substantial risk of prejudice in court. The language used in these articles (“tragic mum”, “the unbearable burden of care”, putting the word murder in scare quotes, etc) does exactly that. Reading these articles, it is clear who we are meant to “side” with.
that these rules on court proceedings are apparently not applicable to cases involving the killing of disabled children shows how little the British press (and by extension, the public) cares about the welfare of disabled people in this country. Calling these children burdens and implying they deserved to die reinforces ableism and makes the world a more dangerous place for disabled people. Yet the press does not count it as encouraging prejudice. maybe it’s because we believe the unlawful killing of disabled infants does not “count” as a real crime
This is abhorrent.
5,000 notes. Tumblr really that’s it?
People are surprised that this only had 5000 notes? That’s pretty much a standard problem. Tumblr as a whole tends to not really give a shit about ableism. I mean this might not be the case for smaller communities like the autistic community or the mentally ill communities etc, but yeah, I’m very much unsurprised at the lack of notes. That’s pretty standard.
After all, tumblr circulated a petition to make a death star but didn’t really circulate one that advocated for it to be illegal to prevent a disabled person from receiving an organ transplant.
But you know. What do I know?
That is so horrible. I can’t even express how I feel about that… It’s just awful.
|—||C.S. Lewis (via bookamour)|
YOU WANNA LEARN ELVISH?! HERE YA GO!
is this legit?
This is legit. My husband, sitting across the room, looks over and says, “IS THAT SOMEONE SHOWING HOW TO CONVERT ENGLISH TO TENGWAR? BECAUSE THAT’S THE WAY!”
Believe this man. He owns atlases of Middle Earth, the complete history of Midle Earth (leatherbound), and has read the books at least 150 times. Also: speaks elvish.
For future reference. :)