Posts Tagged ‘literature’

  • The Question

    January 10th, 2018 | Poetry | journalpulp | 4 Comments

    Wide awake at 4:00am and unable to sleep for the booming silence and the deep damage this silence has done to everyone, the duplicitousness all the way around — himself included — he rises naked from the floor on which his bed is made and sits down at the kitchen table. The pewter moonlight casts […]

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  • In Defense of Description

    July 25th, 2013 | Literature | journalpulp | 3 Comments

    There’s a common misconception (unfortunately growing), popular among so-called commercial-fiction coaches predominantly, though not exclusively, that stories and novels have one and only one real purpose: storytelling. Which is to say, plot. Which is to say, conflict. Anything, therefore, that slows the pace of the plot — or anything that disrupts the plot — should […]

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  • Putting The Cock Back In Cocktail (Part 1)

    Putting The Cock Back In Cocktail (Part 1)

    January 10th, 2012 | Bartending | journalpulp | 17 Comments

    Bartending, which, for better or worse, consumes a great deal of my time, is a subject that evidently interests people to no end — judging, at least, from the sheer number of questions I get on the matter — and often I’m asked: Ray, why bartending? The answer is, my love of literature, which I […]

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  • Literature As An Art Form

    Literature As An Art Form

    November 4th, 2011 | Literature | journalpulp | 12 Comments

    Literature is the art-form of language, and words are its tools. As a painter uses paint, as a musician uses musical instruments, as a sculptor uses stone-and-chisel, so a writer uses words. Words have a definite meaning. That is the first point every writer must address — though of course not every writer answers that […]

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  • What Is Poetry?

    What Is Poetry?

    September 10th, 2011 | Poetry | journalpulp | 2 Comments

    Poetry is a subset of literature, the art form of language, but it also legitimately belongs to another art: music. Poetry is rhyme and rhythm. It is cadence and count, meter and metric. Poetry is prosody. It is scansion. It is versification. And those are the elements of poetry that make it a part of […]

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  • Characterization (Part 3)

    Characterization (Part 3)

    July 27th, 2011 | Characterization, Literature, Plot, Storytelling, Style, Theme | journalpulp | 3 Comments

    Characterization is a presentation of the personality of the people who populate a story. Characterization is primarily a depiction of motivation and motive. The reader must understand what makes the characters act in the way that those characters do. It’s been said that one of the truest tests of good literature is when you can […]

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  • Why Are Stories Important?

    Why Are Stories Important?

    July 20th, 2011 | Art, Literature, Storytelling | journalpulp | 6 Comments

    Stories are important because human beings are conceptual. This among other things means that humans survive by use of their reasoning brains. Humans evolved neither the balls of bulls, nor the trunks of elephants, nor the claws of bears, nor the necks of giraffes, but the brains of Homo sapiens, with a capacity to think. […]

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  • Creating Suspense: Getting Readers To Eat Out The Palm Of Your Hand

    Creating Suspense: Getting Readers To Eat Out The Palm Of Your Hand

    July 18th, 2011 | Plot, Storytelling, Suspense | journalpulp | 2 Comments

    If you want to rivet readers, you must give readers something to worry about. Make the reader nervous. Make her feel intrigued. Make her curious. This issue, which is very closely associated with plot, is called suspense. Suspense is when your eyes are nailed to the screen. It’s when you’re coming out of your seat. […]

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  • What Is Plot?

    What Is Plot?

    June 22nd, 2011 | Plot | journalpulp | 11 Comments

    Plot is a vehicle. It is the method by which you present your story. Plot is a purposeful sequence of events. In a well-plotted story, those events connect logically, culminating in a specific goal, or climax. “Life is an unceasing sequence of individual actions.” Said Ludwig von Mises. That is true. Plot is similar, but […]

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