Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Posts of Others: Insightful, Thought-Provoking

This morning I think that I will steal from link to posts on the blogs of others. A couple of blogs yesterday caught my eye as they dealt with different topics that, in an odd way, are connected to one another. Both are from my growing 'circle of writing friends.' If you are not familiar with these folks, please take the time to drop by their blogs and read their schtuff.

I will first send you to Aaron Polson's blog post from yesterday: "Why I'll Never Make a Living as a Writer." Mr. Polson, educator and molder of young minds, explores the state of short fiction and the state of 'popular art' in general. His post is fueled by a recent comment on Robert Swartwoods's blog that basically said "...if you want people to read what you write, then you have to write what people want to read..." An interesting post, and interesting comments on the 'fluff vs. art' issue.

My next referral is to Cathy Olliffe's post yesterday on her blog Life on the Muskoka River. She posts about Hugh Garner, whom she describes as Canadian 'literary bad-boy' of the 1950's and 60's. He often wrote of the mean streets of Toronto, from his working-class roots, and managed to eek out a living as a full-time writer.

Check out her link to Historical Perspectives on Canadian Publishing that describes Garner as...an outspoken social critic and self proclaimed “one man trade union,” Garner was not afraid to argue with his agents, publishers, and editors in order to control the content of his writing, ensure that his books were properly displayed in retail outlets, and to squeeze as much income as he could from his published works.

Hugh Garner is one of Cathy's literary heroes. After reading her post and the link I can understand why. He managed to 'out-tough' a tough business and stay in control of his writing. I wonder how he would have managed in this wondrous age of Internet publishing.

11 comments:

Cathy Olliffe said...

Cool. Certainly not what I expected this morning, Alan, but cool nevertheless. Have you read The Yellow Sweater? I need to get myself to a book store and pick it up again.
By the way, I never asked about your last post - who's the character at the top?

Anton Gully said...

A Yorkshireman that squabbled about money? Shocking.

Laurita said...

Thanks for the link, Alan. Aaron's post was very interesting, I like what he has to say.

Cathy is already one of my favourite stops of the day. Like yours, her blog is always interesting.

Aaron Polson said...

Alan - Thanks for calling me a "molder" of young minds (it beats "corruptor" by a long shot). ;)

Natalie L. Sin said...

Well sure, but my post had the word penis in the title ; )

Alan W. Davidson said...

Cathy- Nope, haven't read the Yellow Sweater. To be honest, I hadn't heard of the man until reading your post. Not someone we focussed on back in school.

Anton- Ha! Some would say that about the Scots. Perhaps he was a generation or two removed...

Laurita- Thank You. I enjoyed the story you posted of L. Hearn yesterday ;)

Aaron- I'm sure it's a label your bear honourably...and you've probably been called other things...

Nat- My apologies. I should have called the post: Insightful, Thought-Provoking and Sexy. Or Lusty. Something along those lines that would have been more inclusive of you. Forgive me.

katey said...

That's one of the best things about the blog circuit-- people are perpetually inspiring me to think. Part of me thinks that should annoy me, but they're too much fun.

Jarmara Falconer said...

Stealing, Never! Sharing wonderful sites... Most certainly! Thank you, Alan. Have a great Easter with your family.

K.C. Shaw said...

Aaron's post has really gotten me thinking. I'm not sure how much of my recent writing has been me really having fun and how much has been me trying to find a commercially accessible project. I suppose the "having fun" part is important no matter what.

Happy Easter!

ERIN COLE said...

Thanks for the links. These do raise good questions and real concerns for every writer.

kathryn said...

I'm always intrigued by what people have in mind when they write on their blogs. Some seem to utilize it more for an online diary...others have a natural ability to entertain.

Since there are tens of millions of blogs (according to my source @ Google, who refused to narrow it down to even a ballpark estimate) it's amazing that we find each other...but I'm glad we do. Now, we can only hope that agents and publishers are smart enough to comb the World Wide Web for talent...