Tag Archives: Pre-Writing

Where We Go From Here


The 1957 Pink and White Mercury of Imagination

I have so many ideas for posts that I have to pause for a minute and sort through them so I don’t get so busy writing I forget something that is a very good idea.  So, I intend to write today about things I am planning to post.

Sunday I wrote part one of “Why Do You Think That?”  It was specifically about the insane notion that “All kids are good kids”.  The kind of thing only a weird old retired teacher could believe.  There needs to be at least a part two.  I have some other weird beliefs to defend.  “Even we atheists need religion” is one.  “Everybody is a nudist under their clothes” is another.  “Conservatives and Liberals are different animals” is another that might get me killed.


I wrote a blog post before about accepting entries in an inter-stellar bad-poetry-writing contest.  I have an insane urge to put some of my own ridiculously bad and morally indefensible poetry in that contest.  There is enough of that to seriously challenge for the worst poet in the galaxy title.

I have also been doing some colored-pencil artwork that I want to talk about the process of the making of it and show you the work in stages of progress.   That is a way a blogger can make more out of nothing.

Trump is trying hard to take over my blog with clownish buffoonery, but, of course, I am trying to get away from doing that all the time.  The Great Orange Face is certainly an easy mark for something to make fun of.  But I can’t keep up with other political humorists.  I am too dedicated to avoiding insult humor to deal with a clown that invites you so enticingly to throw pies at his face.  He does it so often, and I have already thrown so many pies… that my arms are about to fall off.

After a particularly bad night of vomiting and breathing problems, I am once again thinking about writing about death and the extinction of the whole human race.  Playing checkers with the Grim Reaper is an unusual source for humorous blogs, but I have enough inside information and first hand experience to turn it into a wild board game played on a roller coaster at midnight.


                                                                                                                                                                     Yes, I am randomly re-visiting illustrations from my picture file.

I am currently writing a comedy horror novel called The Baby Werewolf.  It is a story I have been working on for twenty years.  It challenges my very skills as a surrealist. There should be plenty of things to complain about in this blog along the way.  I know you probably aren’t interested in that.  But I am. And don’t tell anybody this, but I don’t write this blog for you, the reader.  I write it for me.  It makes me laugh and it makes me cry and it gives form and permanence to the never-ending dialogue going on in my head.

So, as I approach the 500 word mark, this blog stands revealed as a writer’s road map.  If you are one of those readers who actually reads the whole blog and don’t just click “like” after looking at the pictures, then you know what sorts of things to avoid in the future with this goofy old blog thing.


Filed under blog posting, humor, novel plans, surrealism

Crazy Head-Bashing List-Making


Sometimes I have to stop and think where ideas for posts come from.  Yes, and that is usually the point at which my head is empty and I am out of ideas.  I spent years teaching the writing process and I advocated many different pre-writing idea-generating strategies.  I should be able to come up with something to write about without resorting to bashing my right temple with a hand-held blunt object.  After all, those ideas come out kinda wobbly and full of strangely-colored stars.  So, let me find a broom in the upstairs broom closet in the empty hallways of my mind and sweep together all the possible ideas I have in one pile to look at, grimace, and compare.


There is a letter with a Martian stamp on it.  Inside it proposes I hold an aliens-only poetry writing contest and put the worst possible results into a post.  That could be worth a few chuckles, and possible a gazorpingwallow or two.  At least, that’s what the letter suggests.  It is from some Ixcanixian from the spinward edge of the Sagittarius Spiral Arm of the Milky Way.  20160508_113700


I have several ongoing cartoon projects.  I could be adding another page to the Hidden Kingdom graphic novel I have been working on for thirty years.  I could also do more action-figure comics to rationalize all the time I spend playing with dolls.  And I like to do novel illustrations to go along with the many bizarre and mentally warped novels I have created.


Of course we have recently received the kind of political Christmas gift that most of us would like to track Santa down to his lair for and return back inside the reindeer butt that it came out of.  Insulting the new orangutan king is an easy source of insult-based humor that I don’t have to work too hard at or feel too guilty about.  But too much of that is like getting drunk on cough syrup.  You intended to cure the problem, but you have only managed to add new problems and a hangover headache to top it all off.blue-and-mike-in-color

I still have to fix the cracked and leaky swimming pool before next spring, so that should yield some cementing-your-feet-into-the-pool-wall stories later on.  And there are the numerous frustrations of living life with six incurable diseases to write about.  I can probably make the flaking off of all the skin on the back of my neck from psoriasis sound pretty funny if I try hard enough.  The family dog is still producing dog poop at Guiness-Book-of-World-Records rates… and, oh, yeah, I am still a long way from being done telling you about the bad jokes from more than a quarter of a century of classroom cut-ups.

You know, I think the way to deal with the problem is to simply make a list of ideas.  I can throw darts at the list if I still can’s decide.


Filed under artwork, blog posting, humor, Paffooney, writing, writing humor, writing teacher


Francois spotlight  What I am endlessly burbling about today in purple paisley prose is a raw novel idea.  I have not started to cook it, bake it, or even burn it at all yet.  It is not ready for the writing oven.  It is still that mass of daydreams, nonsense, and foofy-foofram that we former English teachers like to call Pre-Writing.  (Note the capitol letters… teachers make this goop high on the writing-process, lies-the-teacher-has-to-tell list, because, otherwise students will glop out some words on paper and call it a final draft without even re-reading or thinking about the dang thing.)  (Note too the use of the parenthetic expression that breaks up and uglifies the paragraph and identifies this writing as less-than-serious purple paisley prose.)  This goofy post is obviously, then, not only about Pre-Writing, that’s exactly what it is… gloppy, sloppy word mash that I hope to one day boil into something stunningly beautiful.

So here’s what I actually have.  I have a character.  His name is François Martin (not pronounced the Iowegian way, Frank-oyce Mahr-tinn, but the French way, Fran-swah Mahr-tah… because the character is actually from France… duh!) (I will have to post an explanation of Iowegian and the foreign language the people of Iowa actually speak another day.)  François is a recently orphaned young boy whose father, Rejean, was a masterful and loving parent who made the mistake of relying on relatives to take care of his children in the case of something bad happening to him and his wife.  Car accidents are bad and tend to happen too fast to correct this sort of mistake.  François Is sent to live with the family of his father’s American half-brothers and half-sister in Norwall, Iowa.  Here’s where the trouble starts.  Victor Martin, the eldest brother, is the only one of the three who even has a job.  He owns and operates a seedy Midwestern bar in the middle of the tiny town and is universally disliked and berated by local church ladies (the heart and soul of any Midwestern town in the 1980’s.  The other uncle and the aunt are even worse.  They are lazy, detestable, foul-mouthed… and those are their good points.  The other uncle, Richard, has a son named Billy dropped off one day by the hated ex-wife and made to live in the basement of the old house they bought when Ona White’s relatives actually decided to sell her house after her untimely death by werewolf.  Okay, you see by now that this is a tragic story full of emotional heart-ache and pain… and bursting with humorous potential.

This nebulous family drama idea has a name.  Originally I called it Little Boy Crooner because François can paint his face with sad-clown paint and sing karaoke like an angel… an angel who can potentially save his horrible half-uncle’s business and horrible-er family.  I have re-titled it Sing Sad Songs… with Clowns because I added to this novel-notion the idea that François also loses himself in dreams and finds his way to H.P. Lovecraft’s Dreamlands via the magic ways of the three clowns from the Dreamlands, Mr. Disney, Mr. Dickens, and Mr. Shakespeare.   What a mess of an idea!  but I am betting that if I live long enough to get to it, it will be among the best things I have ever written.


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Filed under humor, NOVEL WRITING, Paffooney