should poetry and prose make sense?


Here are 5 reasons to make your writing incomprehensible—

  • impenetrable words allow the reader to focus on the prosody
  • mystification creates enigmas, unresolved mystery
  • if the meaning is obscured the reader can invent their own
  • writing that doesn’t make sense is more likely to be original, less likely to feel familiar
  • life makes very little sense—to me at least—so why should writing?

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creating without trying

Not TryingThe world is so full of a number of things, I’m sure we should all be as happy as kings.

—Robert Louis Stevenson

Kids, you tried your best and you failed miserably. The lesson is, never try.

—Homer Simpson

There are stacks of useful tips on the web about writing and creativity in general, but I find coming up with original ideas is still a struggle. This is a technique that sometimes works for me. Continue reading

fantasy, sci fi, and the ancient mariner

Ancient MarinerFantasy and science fiction are the dominant categories under the broad speculative fiction banner, but what’s the difference between them? I started wondering about that when I re-read Coleridge’s The Rime of the Ancient Mariner, which was a source for Jacinta’s Lovers.

The Rime is one of my favourite poems, but a couple of verses have always puzzled me—

‘But why drives on that ship so fast,
Without or wave or wind ?’

‘The air is cut away before,
And closes from behind.’

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the rising

The Rising‘The Rising’ has appeared in the autumn 2014 issue of the Colored Lens, and is now freely available online. From the publishers—

By publishing short stories and serialized novellas every quarter in genres ranging from fantasy, to science fiction, to slipstream or magical realism, we hope to help our readers see the world just a bit differently.

The main source for the story was the movie A Hora da Estrela (The Hour of the Star) based on the novel of the same name by Clarice Lispector. The background for the sf component was the technique of geological surveying with a magnetohydrodynamic generator.

With some pieces, I find it difficult to identify sources or inspiration and with other pieces I find it easy, but that doesn’t mean I’m doing some sort of copying from a source. Continue reading