Archive | ideas RSS feed for this section

Daily Obstruction: In Mozart’s Workshop

23 Sep


In Mozart’s Workshop


Radios transmit, they don’t create.  So too with minds.

Daily Obstruction: Obscure

21 Sep





As little as we know of the origins of our ideas, we know even less of where they will take us – or how.

Daily Obstruction: The Sad State of the Written Word

17 Jul



The Sad State of the Written Word



The idea of an author, creator, inspired visionary is rapidly losing ground to data-driven documents published on demand.  These data-drivers aren’t even producing books, but e-books, which are not testaments in time, but rather, literally, movable type that may say something else tomorrow than they do today if the data so dictates.

Daily Obstruction: In Medias Res

11 Apr


In Medias Res


“When you write a novel, do you start with a concept or a character?” he asked.

“Sometimes concepts become characters, other times characters exemplify concepts,” I said.

“Which am I?” he demanded of me.

“That depends,” I said.

“On what?” he asked with both skepticism and fear in his voice.

“On where this story began – with a concept or a character.”

“Only you can tell me that,” he said, impudently, folding his arms.

“That may be true, or. . .”

“Or what?”

“Or, maybe there is no beginning to this story.  Maybe you just came into existence.  Don’t you remember?”

“Only if you give me such a memory.”

“Well, let me ask you this: What does it matter to you?”

“What does what matter to me?”

“What does it matter whether you began as a concept or as a character?”

He pondered for a moment and then spoke slowly, “I don’t know that it makes a difference, but I’d prefer to know one way or the other.  I suppose I’d feel less. . . real. . . as a concept.”

“But by now you’d be a character.  A real character.”

“Maybe,” he said, “but only if you’re good at your craft.  Otherwise, I’m just a strawman, a stand-in, a ringer for something more ethereal.”

“Well, I can tell you, unequivocally, now you are either a full-blown character or a concept with personality.  In either case, I couldn’t tell the difference between the two.”

“Let me ask you this. . .”

Daily Obstruction: Interpretive Strategies

9 Apr


Interpretive Strategies

What I right today, even if critical of what I wrote yesterday, in no way impinges upon yesterday’s writing.  (Be sure to read yesterday’s writing with this hermeneutic approach.)

Daily Obstruction: Right Now

4 Apr


socrates plato

Right Now

If you live in the Now then you’ll never be even a minute older than you are now.

Daily Obstruction: In Heaven and On Earth

27 Feb



In Heaven and On Earth


Though the law, in theory, represents ‘us’ and ‘our’ interests, we don’t live in theory.  In lived experience, the lofty aspirations of ‘the law’ are manifest in the flawed enforcement of mortals drunk on power and the crushing force of ‘a system.’  Hence, it should come as no surprise that in fiction outlaws are portrayed as heroes opposing every last vestige of authority and audiences everywhere identify with the heroic lawbreaker.

Daily Obstruction: Party Etiquette

13 Jan


Party Etiquette


Politics, money, religion, and sex – things to avoid when making “small-talk.”  Small-talk reflects small-thought, little-thought, no-thought.  Show me the way to the party for big thoughts and deep conversation where the question “How are you?” is not understood to be a greeting.


Daily Obstruction: Craft

9 Jan



Ideas come, unbidden, at the speed of light.  Translating them into a shared language is a formidable task; the more unique the idea, the more difficult the translation.