Technical writers or non fiction writers scribble to pay the bills and for the love of the analytical or the exercise of truth or deception.

Fiction authors write to illuminate their world or escape it.

Whichever kind of writer, it's all about staying alive and helping or entertaining others.

The Writing Life

Like most writers, I have a love of reading and the power of words. When I was younger, I read everything I could get my hands on, but I don’t consider myself well read. I consumed books like a starved person, so quickly I hardly knew what I had read. By some strange process of osmosis, I learned from everything I read, but I cannot give you an erudite discussion of characters, plots, or authors. I can only tell you it’s lodged some where in the core of my being and informs my writing.

In addition to reading, I’ve spent a life time writing---from that first elementary school composition to my college days when I studied French literature and wrote explications de texte. Along the way, I fell into technical writing--to put food on the table and pay bills. In the 90s, I had the good fortune to take a dialog class with Sol Stein, former owner of Stein & Day publishers in New York and a prolific author. That led to his California-based writers’ group, Chapter One. It was a rigorous, ego-bruising experience, but I was intent on learning everything I could about fiction writing. A few years ago, I also had the good fortune to study with another writer, Louella Nelson, an experienced romance writer and teacher of fiction writing. She provided a different perspective and balance to my writing.

My novel, DREAMING OF LAUGHING HAWK, a mainstream, Sixties era novel, is available on Amazon in print and ebook (also available in Canada, Europe, Japan, and Brazil). Download a free sample. If you like it, I hope you'll download the book and post a review on Amazon.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Herman Cain – Guilt, Real or Imagined, is Always a Good Storyline

A person can be falsely accused of egregious behavior, such as sexual harassment, for which there is no proof. Likewise, a person can be sexually aggressive and get away with it—again, no proof. So is Presidential candidate Herman Cain a victim or the victimizer?

Do you believe the four women stating that they were sexually harassed by Mr. Cain are telling the truth? Can all the media frenzy be dismissed as a vast left-wing conspiracy or the clever ploy of a political opponent? Or is there a thread of truth bleeding through the twisted fabric of Herman Cain’s ever-changing storyline?

This story is time-worn. A public figure caught in some impropriety vehemently denies all his accusers and experiences a convenient lapse of memory. With mounting media pressure, the story is dribbled out in conflicting pieces and carefully parsed explanations. Storytelling on-the-fly with no believable plot in mind. The accusers are dismissed for their personal failings and hidden agendas. Finally, cornered, the man tearfully admits his deceit and wrongdoing. I only say man because all of the recent stories in the news have been men, but I’m sure this old shoe will fit women too.

So you have to ask yourself, whether reader or writer, what makes someone think they can rewrite their past history to make it conform to the image they want projected to the world? Does the mind conveniently subvert the truth and wipe out inconvenient facts so that the person’s psyche can escape guilt? Or do people just believe they are clever enough to really get away with it?

Accusations, guilt, and denial. This is the stuff of which good stories are made. I have a feeling we will get no tears from Herman Cain. He thinks he can manage his way out of this one.

Oh, and one last niggling question--why are Cain's supposed victims, the ones who have come forward, all attractive, intelligent blonds?

1 comment:

  1. After listening to all the demeaning, dismissive remarks made by the right-wing media and the Cain camp about the women who claimed sexual harassment, I can only conclude that we are still in the dark ages. Cain jokingly suggested that if other candidates were accused of sexual harassment, they too might enjoy better poll numbers. We'll see about that. Let the fools rush in.