Category: beginner’s writings

20 Steps to Starting Your Novel

When I finished Murdock #6—Murdock Tackles Taos—I dozed, I dreamt of Fame, that elusive imposter, and then I launched into Murdock #7, and felt a bone-chilling loss of momentum, because the work on the Taos book was wrap-up writing, little fixes, edits, careful knitting up, joyful polishing—but the writing on the new book was clumsy, dull, opaque, fitful, maddening.

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Food for the Hungry Writer is a series of informative essays by Jack Remick and Robert J. Ray (© 2012) discussing Story, Memoir & Journal, and the Power of Writing Practice (as discussed in Natalie Goldberg’s book Writing Down The Bones.) and other topics as they are developed.

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notes from “Food for the Hungry Writer”

Some Notes on Memoir from “Food for the Hungry Writer” ©2011 by Jack Remick and Robert J Ray.   Not since the 18th Century have we seen anything like the flowering of memoir writing in our time. Is the hunger for memoir symptomatic of the Politics of the Individual? or are readers, fed up with fiction, turning to the trials and triumphs of real people for inspiration and validation? Accompanying the flood of memoirs is the journal, a personal kind of writing without form, without structure, without, necessarily, style. The memoir isn’t a novel yet it travels beyond journal. It has structure and form, it has inhabitants and villains, it has suspense and mystery as well as delicate, intimate, exploratory writing. History of timed writing. Automatic writing comes  from the Surrealists.  Robert Desnos taught the surrealists to write the waking dream; Jack Kerouac and the Beats loved automatic writing, blowing deep as outlined in Kerouac’s Twenty-One principles of Automatic Writing; Natalie Goldberg adapted automatic writing into Writing Practice when she put a timer on it.  In Taos, generations of writers learned timed writing, which leads to memoir. Natalie’s favorite line: I remember…. and its counter: I don’t remember…. First Rule: Always open up: let your hand guide your memory. It is in you, you have to get to it. Structure of timed writing: Write until the timer stops. Why? Writers have...

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How to Read a Memoir Before You Write One

How to Read A Memoir Before You Write One © 2011 By Robert J Ray and Jack Remick Writing a memoir is writing about yourself. Writing about who you were back when. When you write a memoir, you focus on your quirks and fears, your betrayals, your emotions, your personal victimhood. To get started click here: How to Read a Memoir—Getting Started Share this:TweetShare on TumblrEmailLike this:Like...

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Zen Poetics–The Art of Reading a Poem

©1999 By Jack Remick and Robert J Ray Read each line below aloud. Take your time. Freedom without discipline is chaos Energy is language working through you Patience is killing your ego Patience and energy equal discipline Energy and discipline equal power Power and strength equal grace Grace is the goal of our writing. Copy those lines. Use your hand, your fingers, your wrist, your brain. Circle the words that repeat. Grab the words. Pull them close. Slow down. Show some patience. Look at your finger. Zen Poetics Twists your Finger This is the Zen of a poem – learn how to wait. Patience is a finger puzzle – The harder you try to get out of it, the tighter it gets. Patience is simple. It is the itch under the skin before you know you want to scratch. The goal of a poem is to find a primitive language that lets the poet transform emotion into image. A poem has no language. The poet uses English or Chinese approximates to get to the emotion. Image is pre-linguistic. Before the image there is emotion. The emotion comes, then we find language to cover it. We cover the emotion with image. Write the emotion. Emotion evokes image. Image is covered with language, but language is not the ideal expression for the image. The ideal language of a poem is a...

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Copyright & Excerpts

©2010-2017 Jack Remick, Robert J. Ray. All rights Reserved. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material, including text and images, without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Short excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Jack Remick and Robert J. Ray and "Bob and Jacks Writing Blog" with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.