April 2013

THE MARK INTERVIEWS ROB ROBERGE

The Sweet Stench of Failure

I’m fascinated by both success and failure. Success is nice; I’ve enjoyed the rare times I’ve achieved any level of it. But given the choice, failure is always more interesting to write about.

Who wants to read about someone who gets everything they want? Sure, maybe you go for happy endings, but a story generally only captures our attention if everything goes wrong along the way.

A Better-Focused Lens

Last night I went to a reading at a theater in Santa Monica. My teacher, speaking to the entire audience, reminded me of the first task she assigned each quarter. To write a glimmer, one gets in and gets out. Most everything is concrete. There are few abstractions.

Space And Time

We haven’t had workshop since mid-March. This time is to be spent finishing and rewriting our manuscripts. At our last meeting, I was given notes on how to make a story better. Over the past couple of weeks I had completed most of my rewrites. However, a couple of small but important matters were still bothering me about the story. They’re the type of rewrites that require deep thought: a character’s reaction to conflict, a story title.

Request For Action On Cameroon

We are writing to ask PEN members to help support our fellow writers and journalists in Cameroon. Cameroon has consistently failed to meet its obligation to protect freedom of expression, despite its international human rights commitments and provisions in domestic law.

The Worst Poetry I Have Ever Read

 

Walter Benton was an American poet and writer. His book of poems titled This is My Beloved was published in 1943 and sold roughly 350,000 copies by 1949. Despite the popularity of his poetry, a recent article on biblioklept.org written by Edwin Turner has called Benton's work "...simply quasy, bad writing.

When Does It End?

“Writing is Rewriting” – Ernest Hemingway

Second Hemingway reference in a week, and I’m not even a huge fan. Actually, a lot of writers have revealed this secret, if it ever needed revealing.

I’ll add my own: A writer who’s satisfied after a first draft probably isn’t a writer.

PEN CENTER USA CRAFT SESSIONS

Making Mutants in the Hammer: Poetic Adaptations from Visual Art

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