It's the greatest time in history to be a writer. There are more ways to get published than ever before. While it's great to have so many options, it's also confusing. But when you break these many different ways down, they sort themselves out into just three primary paths.
We're determined in the time we have left to edit out the dishonest plots, tired characters, obsolete themes, and destructive story lines, the creaky set pieces that block us from feeling real. We want to know ourselves in the end and not be deceived by bad fiction.
The wise person understands why we run from questions that we might not be able to answer, and why we wrongly avoid other obstacles or risks that we should face. Our default emotions have evolved to lament loss more than to celebrate gain.
Traditional African patterns ornament the ovalescent center while the figure is surrounded at top and bottom with the inherited African motifs of the nation he was born to -- but what is inside Mr. Mitchell is boundless without physical context to distinguish him from any other.
When I asked Secretary Shultz what books he thought shaped work in America, I didn't know what to expect for an answer. I assumed he'd suggest academic tomes; books I never heard of -- important books, yes ... but ones that are not particularly accessible. I was wrong.
They are drawn to take the journey toward individuation rather than individualism, and for many, that journey is not just a progression toward a healthy ego--invaluable as that is in itself--but also an opening to the transcendent dimensions of human experience.
Not only are the one hundred letters he chose to reproduce in the book great to look at, they are great to read, allowing experiences that are in turn transformative, moving, and inspirational (or chilling, in a few cases).
It's October and the boys of summer are heading for the World Series Fall Classic. So it's fitting to ask, what is it about this ball-and-stick game that is so deeply embedded in our culture -- with influence well beyond the actual sport of baseball?
Thirteen years later, I sat in my office working a rewarding job, earning a decent income for my daughter and our future. But after reading that poem I glanced back at the performance report on my desk and then stared blankly out my window.
While I do not place Rolling Stone necessarily in the category of the classics censored and banned throughout the history of ideas, I certainly advocate for the age-appropriate consumption of materials from which we may derive our own conclusions and our own ideas.
Because I am an artist, my tremor reminded me of Auguste Renoir who, because of crippling arthritis, strapped brushes to his hands and painted with longer, more fluid strokes, resulting in some of his best works.
This is a profound example of quiet integrity -- staying true to one's own nature and staying whole. Steadfastness, in its deepest regard, inhabits the resolve not to be persuaded or worn down to be something we are not.
This is something of a belated "best of year" list, although there are some older titles I only got to last year included. An eclectic list, modestly offered -- a bit heavy on books on music, but many others, and perhaps something will strike the interest of other readers.
Theologians through the ages remind us that doubt is integral to belief and even to prayer. Paul Tillich argued that "doubt is not the opposite of faith; it is an element of faith." God is present in our doubt as much as our certainty.
Wayne Koestenbaum's shift from writing desk to easel, from mind to matter, from written word to glittering images, can be admired in his first solo exhibit at White Columns, where his unabashed sweeping series of colorful male nudes make a convincing case for risktaking.