J Malcolm Manness – 16 April, 2017
An excellent article on The Vintage News site relates the story of Florence Leona Christie Thompson, the woman in the iconic photo of the Great Depression The Migrant Mother, by Dorothea Lange.
The story reveals a hidden tragedy – one behind the obvious, the legion of people caught in the ecological and political collapse that was that era.
As a youngster with a budding interest in photography, I was inspired by this photo. The fact that an image can Continue reading
5 Star: A local’s perspective, more from less, culture exposed, leaves you wanting more.
on February 2, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition
Waiting for a Latte, is story that connects to place. Everything about Portland the reader knows, or thinks, gets tapped into here. Seunnasepp brings our own urban anxiety to the table and gives the reader a glimpse of self-awareness through the situation and character interactions. Read in a coffee shop on an iPad, how perfect. A nice multidimensional story focusing on the social subtleties embedded in the mundane.
In Goodie Two-Shoes we meet characters we all already know. Seunnasepp gives us context and details, and a chance to spy on the inner essence of these people we all see on a daily basis. The writing is never dense, never showy, but just right.
Couches have flavors. This is an unsettling fact that will no longer be overlooked by the readers. Seunnasepp is heavily influenced by the climate of the Pacific Northwest. We all discuss the weather as a basis of social interaction, and this is the foundational thoughts from which the stores develop.
Here is a reading from the novel The Songbook of Suomi by Jaan Seunnasepp. Read and with photos by J M Manness.
Reading-Songbook_ch23_BB – Computer from Jaan Seunnasepp on Vimeo.
This is a reading from my novel The Songbook of Suomi in which a girl, Diana Morales, is taken back into the world of the the Finnish epic The Kalevala.
Here, Diana has finally found Väinämöinen – the hero of The Kalevala. But it is late so she goes to bed while the Väinämöinen, who among other things is the god of music, goes out to play the kantele.
Jaan’s short story Elk City, has just been published on Work Literary Magazine.
Mission: To publish the best writing, thought and information about work, or lack thereof, while providing a forum for readership to connect and respond.
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Elk City is a semi-fictional account of a trip to an isolated Idaho town by a group of hippie tree planters, and the relationship they set up with the townsfolk.
A group of old timers and a bunch of kids sat around the campfire. A couple of fresh logs were tossed on, sending a rush of sparks up to the sky. Robbie Richards pushed back his grey hair, and stretched his long boots towards the fire. Someone handed him a fresh bottle of Black Butte Porter, and he took a swig. The others, young and old turned towards him as he began his story:
Dusk was settin’ in and the rain was pourin’ down like there was no tomorrow as Tim Boty and me turned onto route 14 outa Grangeville and headed toward Elk City in spring of ‘76. Tim was driving his dusty old green Saab 96. That thing had more creaks and rattles in it than an old horse buggy, but she ran just fine. Man it was comin’ down!
Check it out!
Found an interesting article on “micro fiction” on The Guardian:
Stories in your pocket: how to write flash fiction by David Gaffney.
I began to produce these ultra-short stories – sawn-off tales, as I call them – when I was commuting from Manchester to Liverpool…
These stories, small as they were, had a huge appetite; little fat monsters that gobbled up ideas like chicken nuggets. The habit of reducing text could get out of hand too; I once took away the last two sentences of a story and realised I had reduced it to a blank page.
How to write flash fiction
1. Start in the middle.
You don’t have time in this very short form to set scenes and build character.
Being a writer – or other artist for that matter – is a bit like being a boxer. If you think you are going to get into the ring and are not ready to take a few punches then you should not be there.
Not only is it unrealistic, but you do your audience a disservice if you are not willing to take criticism.
We are a sensitive lot and it is painful to see our babies criticized, but it is necessary if we wish to grow and improve our craft to take valid, well meant criticism.
You do not necessarily have to agree with everything, but it is important to listen and evaluate. In the end it is your name on the piece not your editor’s or other critic’s. So you need to be true to yourself, but not closed off.
– Malcolm Manness
A scrupulous writer, in every sentence that he writes, will ask himself at least four questions, thus: 1. What am I trying to say? 2. What words will express it? 3. What image or idiom will make it clearer? 4. Is this image fresh enough to have an effect?
George Orwell, “Politics and the English Language”, 1946
English essayist, novelist, & satirist (1903 – 1950)
Pronto voy a publicar el cuentito gratis La Habitación en este pagina.