Maybe you’ve tried everything I’ve suggested so far, and you’re disappointed to find that you’re still not a great writer. Don’t worry. Most of us aren’t.
But there are other tricks we can try.
There’s a story that Hunter S. Thompson used to re-type the novels of the “greats” like Faulkner, word-for-word, so he could hear the “music” behind the language. That sounds like some brilliant myth-making bullshit to me, but we’ll go with it. Maybe we can find some common element behind the methods of now-famous authors.
Model their methods, and you model their success.
If you take a hard look at the lives of Hemingway, Joyce, Poe, Hunter S. Thompson, Bukowski, and many other writers who have gained the mantle of post-mortem austerity, we can see one commonality: they weren’t teetotalers. That’s a nice way of saying they were fecking drunks. (Most of them also had dead wives, but I’m not about to openly suggest homicide to the general public.)
So, if nothing else has worked for you, try drinking. I suggest a good single malt scotch. At least 15 years in the cask. Some writers prefer a finer scotch than that, but I think that your writing skills will improve regardless of the vintage. After all, Hunter wasn’t so selective. He drank Wild Turkey like it was water, and he was a fecking genius.
You might still be staring at that blank screen with a feeling of horror. Spin the ice around in the glass. A firm, hefty glass. You want to feel the weight of it in your hand. Stare through the ice to the source of your inner creativity as the ice slowly comes back to rest. For me the sound of ice swirling brings on inspiration to unlock worlds for your reader.
Dont take my word for it, if you don’t beleve me. By way of demonstrating to you the effectiveness of this technique I have been taking a slug myself with each couple sentences. It’s like method acting in motion. A smooth action motion like the bolt of a rifle or draught of godhood. Drink to success, not excess. Are you a genius yet? I am
If you still don’t habve a grasp of your plot or characters, have another. Eventyally it’ll work. Open up to the dfjf and moood enuff to wind the wyndlesssss. Tentacles. Plot twees.
Terrors of night awAIT–
James Curcio is a multi-media artist, writer, and theorist, who has spent most of his adult life exploring modern myths. This exploration has taken the form of collaborative novels, essays on myth, culture, the occult and sexuality, scripts for film and comic production, “round-table” musical albums, soundtracks, podcasts, live performances and installations. He has written for Disinformation, New Falcon Press, Reality Sandwich, Immanion Press, Alterati, and Jive Magazine. He will sleep when he is dead.