Literary chaos, but, like, the good kind

a single pale yellow lotus flower blooming over moonlit leaves

Contrary to how a tragic number of people feel in this grim society, my subconscious mind is likely my best friend.  Mainly as I try my best to stay out of its way and let it do its job, which is sorting through my thoughts while I’m not paying attention.

As I approach the end of another Work in Progress I must consider my next project.  Writing is my strong suit, so I’d like to stay atop this wave of productivity, which means I have to choose which book to write. Given I have a round dozen works what have reached a stage of development worthy of completion, this is a frustrating task. One I was prepared to assign to random chance and/or public opinion. No joke, there was going to be a poll in my author newsletter, asking which potential WIP most appealed to my readers.

As is so frequently the case, I slept on it and woke up with the answer.  Perhaps next month I’ll be asking which book I ought to write, but as the solution to an intractable plot problem unfolded before me like a lotus flower, I made up my mind.

a single pale yellow lotus flower blooming over moonlit leaves
Photo by Heramb Savarkar on Unsplash

And now the shameless plug…

I started writing as The Fixer as an experiment.  Sorry, you’ve been a test subject all this time, and by reading this sentence you have waived all right to object.  I joke, but really I wanted to find out how far the WordPress algorithms would spread my little signal.  (If you’re a long time reader who also blogs, I haven’t followed you or anyone else back mainly because I needed the clean data!) 

A hundred posts in, I have begun to integrate The Fixer with my other socials. It’s all part of the same great ball of lies long term plan of making a living from writing. A plan which only moves forward if people know I have books for sale.

Hopefully you know what to expect.  If the sort of things I write about make you think less of me, well, that’s really your problem to solve.  As yet I don’t know that I’ve got anything in publication that doesn’t involve some kind of what we in the industry like to call ‘steam.’  Avert thine virgin eyes if you must, but as previous Fixer posts have discussed Georges Bataille, pornographic playing cards, wanton drug use, and gender rebellion, nothing should really surprise you should you choose to follow any of the links I’ve added to the side of the page. 

I intend to keep The Fixer as it is, a home for essays and poems and not a pillar of my marketing platform.  Having a reason to write for fun is increasingly important as I devote more of myself to the business of being a writer.  when one’s hobby becomes one’s career, it’s vital to maintain a creative outlet that has nothing to do with money.

Find my links here.

A Mantra for the Terrified

"I must not fear.
Fear is the mind-killer.
Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration.
I will face my fear.
I will permit it to pass over me and through me.
And when it has gone past, I will turn the inner eye to see its path.
Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain."
-Frank Herbert

The Bene Gesserit litany against fear is one of the strongest examples of a clever, spiritual-sounding concept from a piece of fiction being turned into a near-religious text.  It sounds magnificent, and it echoes many sentiments of Western thought. Perhaps it’s less meaningful to people whose religious cultures make death part of an infinitely iterating cycle and not the end point of a linear process (see: apocalypse, Christian obsession with.)

But the litany, along with the existence of the Bene Gesserit and the rest of the Dune universe, is a fictional proposition. Frank Herbert wrote fiction. He made it all up. That it sounds like a real religion is simply because he did a good job of it.  By way of comparison, consider The Force, which is essential Qi in a British accent. Good old Ether if you like, if it was real and semi-sentient. Lucas didn’t invent that out of thin air (*laughs in alchemist*) but patched it together from established texts. He got away with it because his audience of pre-adolescent North Americans had by and large never heard of Taoism.

We’re meant to overcome our fears, but I have a very different attitude these days. I don’t need to ‘conquer’ my fears before doing The Big Things. I’ve tried and tried to make myself fearless before doing something, and it’s a waste of time.  Go ahead and have the fear, but do the thing anyway. Doing The Thing is maybe the only way to get rid of the fear.

As Space Mom said, “stay afraid, but do it anyway.” If anyone was ever Strong with the Force, it was Carrie Fisher.

So grab your maker hooks and let’s ride this sandbitch into tomorrow. Enjoy this you-failed-witch-school-but-yay-now-you-don’t-have-to-fuck-a-Harkonnen litany against giving a shit about being afraid.

And if anyone mentions that these are two different sci-fi franchises, I will literally scream.

I can’t do shit about the fear
It can kill me if I let it, but I don’t think it will
Besides, there is no such thing as total obliteration
I will face my fear
I will let it walk along with me
It will not keep me from taking another step
The fear will probably never go away. Regardless, I remain