Sovereign Storytelling

Mood/Music Monday

I woke up this morning thinking about Stephen King's On Writing: A Memior of the Craft, which I read more than a decade ago. At its reading, I was impressed by King's philosophy that if you're writing full time, you must treat it as a job, and you must also take care of yourself. He mentioned running on a treadmill, eating well, and remembering to shower every day.

It was at this time that I was just starting to take on writing as a full time endeavor, and had little knowledge on what the lifestyle of a writer was actually supposed to entail. As I've since learned, the writing lifestyle is what I make of it, and it certainly involves more hard work than anyone ever warned me about.

Writing is easy—it's the cutting out your heart and shoving it on the page part that'll kill you.

"When you write a story, you're telling yourself the story... When you rewrite, your main job is taking out all the things that are not the story." (p. 47)

"Stopping a piece of work just because it's hard, either emotionally of imaginatively, is a bad idea. Sometimes you have to go on when you don't feel like it, and sometimes you're doing good work when it feels like all you're managing is to shovel shit from a sitting position." (p. 69)

"If you want to be a writer, you must do two things above all others: read a lot and write a lot. There's no way around these two things that I'm aware of, no shortcut." (p. 139)

"It's best that I be as clear about this as I can—I want you to understand that my basic belief about the making of stories is that they pretty much make themselves." (p. 159)

"I think it's rare that incoherence or dull storytelling can be solved by something so minor as a second draft." (p. 167)

"Thin description leaves the reader feeling bewildered and nearsighted. Overdescription buries him or her in details and images. The trick is to find a happy medium. It's also important to know what to describe and what can be left alone while you get on with your main job, which is telling a story." (p. 171)

"The key to good description begins with clear seeing and ends with clear writing, the kind of writing that employs fresh images and simple vocabulary." (p. 177)

"As with all other aspects of fiction, the key to writing good dialogue is honesty." (p. 184)

"Once your basic story is on paper, you need to think about what it means and enrich your following drafts with your conclusions. To do less is to rob your work (and eventually your readers) of the vision that makes each tale you write uniquely your own." (p. 209)

On Writing: A Memior of the Craft | By Stephen King | Page numbers reference POCKET BOOKS paperback Copyright © 2000 by Stephen King

“I’m a huge Ramones fan, and my radio station got them to play a concert in Bangor. They put on a great rock and roll show. We had dinner afterwards, and talked about Pet Sematary. The song followed. It was great.” — Stephen King

"14 Things We Learned from Stephen King's Reddit AMA"By Emily Temple | Flavorwire | June 21, 2013

[Pet Sematarty] features two songs by the Ramones, one of Stephen King's favorite bands: "Sheena Is a Punk Rocker" appears in a scene, and "Pet Sematary", a new track written specially for the movie, plays over the credits.

The song "Pet Sematary" became one of the Ramones' biggest charting hits, reaching number four on the Billboard 'Modern Rock Tracks' list, despite being, in the words of AMG, "reviled by most of the band's hardcore fans".

— "Pet Sematary (film)" | Wikipedia

Artists draw inspiration from music just as we do from any other thoughtful piece of art. Though the corrosion of envy often leads us to believe otherwise, as artists, we really are all in this together. If we can't come from a place of honest to God encouragement, then really, what the hell's the point?

The Ramones
Sheena is a Punk Rocker

Back in Black

They gotta catch me if
They want me to hang
'Cause I’m back on the track
And I’m beatin' the flack
Nobody's gonna get me on another rap
So look at me now
I’m just makin' my play
Don't try to push your luck
Just get out of my way

Creedence Clearwater Revival
Lookin' Out My Back Door

Margot & The Nuclear So and So's

Jeremy Messersmith

When you've been forgotten
Labeled left for lost
Given up, knocked down, and written off
When you feel like dying
Think you won't be missed
I will be there in an ambulance

Conor Oberst
Sugar Street

The Decemberists
Carolina Low

The Avett Brothers
Head Full of Doubt/Road Full of Promise

There’s a darkness upon me that’s flooded in light
In the fine print they tell me what’s wrong and what’s right
And it comes in black and it comes in white
And I’m frightened by those that don’t see it

The White Stripes
Catch Hell Blues

The Ramones
Pet Sematary

Under the arc of a weather stain boards
Ancient goblins, and warlords
Come out of the ground, not making a sound
The smell of death is all around
And the night when the cold wind blows
No one cares, nobody knows

I don't want to be buried in a Pet Sematary
I don't want to live my life again
I don't want to be buried in a Pet Sematary
I don't want to live my life again

Follow Victor to the sacred place
This ain't a dream, I can't escape
Molars and fangs, the clicking of bones
Spirits moaning among the tombstones
And the night, when the moon is bright
Someone cries, something ain't right

The moon is full, the air is still
All of a sudden I feel a chill
Victor is grinning, flesh rotting away
Skeletons dance, I curse this day
And the night when the wolves cry out
Listen close and you can hear me shout