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Darn it. This was the post for next Wednesday. I hit the wrong button.

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I know that from the good old structuralists, where the signifier is the expression and the signified is the carried meaning. What a wonderful thought to personify these two by applying it to the concept of apostolic fiction. Much praise to you.

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;)

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Yeah, I'd be guessing. I'm still uncertain what's a 'tautology.'

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I like saying phallocentric and heterogeneous. Read the Woody Allen essay "The Whores of Mensa" about the erotic thrill of hiring super-intellectual escorts.

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Still, let's not get bogged down in the abstract. The job is always finding a scenario that demonstrates the abstract.

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Did you...establish heart authority by getting something wrong? Haha

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Heh, he, he... Tom was always quoting Einstein to the effect that there are no accidents.

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founding

Your beautiful photo is an endless cache of unlimited potential. It’s unable to speak and impose will. A blank slate I can either add or detract significant erotic or emotional attributes to at will. Since I am only adding attributes I adore or desire would I just be falling in love with myself? I love you Paula. Why don’t you love me back!

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According to Bob Ross, it wasn't a mistake but a happy accident :D

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Poor Bob. I saw that documentary. Breathing all that paint thinner by accident. The perm chemicals probably didn't do him any favors, either.

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Seen that one too, on Netflix. So good. Never knew how much people loved Bob. And it was heartbreaking to hear how he reacted to his first wife's death. His son said he never saw him cry until then. I was like woah. We'll paint happy trees in his honor! Just not with Bob Ross merchandise. Damn those Kowalskis.

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I guess you’ll just have to write more for us Chuck!

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Yes! More! My hunger for Chuck's wisdom is insatiable.

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Glad you hit it. I'm writing a first-person story and I needed the reminder about submerging the i. Now I have to figure out how to do it myself. Thanks Chuck! (no sarcasm involved)

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Posts from the future! Thanks for that, now I have a few extra days to change what I'm writing to make the narrator fawn over the narcissist character. Your posting this is extremely helpful, but I keep adding changes to the list for the 3rd revision. Hoping its good enough to send to friends for feedback before the end of the year.

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The magic is gone. I thought you wrote these up after you freshly sealed a hapless victim in the walls of your ever growing woodland castle. Now all I have to think about is a lifetime spent learning and refining a certain set of writing skills. To learn all of this right before the holidays is just heart breaking.

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I love how you talked about having a character glorify another. It's definitely refreshing when we kinda live in world of bringing each other down. There was an article I read about Gordon Lish. He thought a main character had to have two essential qualities: adorability and gravitas. An adorable character is usually a weaker character who doesn't diminish others.

Here is the article -- https://chicagoreader.com/news-politics/the-gospel-according-to-gordon-lish/

When I first learned about "submerging the I," it made my critical, self-editor even more demanding. Because while I was writing a rough draft to a short story, every "I" I wrote made me cringe really hard. I would stop. Did you ever have that reaction when you first learned it?

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Thank you! Will read.

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For a brief moment, time’s head rolled and we traveled together!

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founding

Hard to find Campfires of the Dead by Peter Christopher. COTD and some other work will be reprinted September 2022.

https://1111press.com/peter-christopher

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Is there something of a transgressive way that this is also used with the Menace to Society method (not a technical term lol) whereby the narrator is lifted up by their reverence for and comparison to a character who is morally much worse than them? Or would that be an entirely different thing?

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great article thanks very generous and demonstrates the love

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founding

My favourite ever Mother's Day card was as a result of a similar writing task at my son's kindergarten. I love my mummy when... (she reads to me... cuddles me... type of thing) My kid wrote "I love my Mummy when I have her ALL TO MYSELF" No prize for Oscar. But the most honest card I ever got and hinted at more narrative to come....

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(weepy happy face)

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I wanted to make a quick comment and wrote myself into utter confusion. Now, after breaking the train of thought, I return with my copy-paste jargon, remade like the shards of Narsil reforged into Anduril, flame of the west, for Aragorn, son of Arathorn, rightful heir to the throne of Gondor (before the end of the LoTR ROTK) hopefully with better constructed use of my own first person, because action, as you shared before, comes first. Ok I don’t think that makes any sense but w/e:

I was struggling to make sense of the earlier post, saw this one, skipped ahead and now nothing makes sense!😂😅😅

I grew up in a household that was a warring state of affirmation, stress, management and capitulation.

I have a different perspective than you, as the other person, etc.

I try to share my own perspective, yet the confusing state of growing up to me- having been spoon fed some relative state of conviction at home, and especially within social life in public school, my overall attention (or lack thereof) for narrative speaking was essentially the same defense from what I had been exposed to in my home: stress and tension and, basically, a proverbial vacuum I couldn’t help but fall into before seeking an escape. Now here I am. I think, therefore, I am.

I am unsure how to describe things in an organic way that is not simply expressed within my own mind’s constructs of language. But where I truly feel more open and sure with my own expression is with expression of feelings, and perspective in and of itself, often in parables or frivolent monologues and diatribes. I like to think I am like someone with the gift of gab who elaborates over something they love with entendre’s and rhymes, but not with a pre-scripted purpose.. I don’t understand the realm of professional writing so well, but expression, at least to me, has always been an easy sentiment when expressing emotion, conflict and environments of stress (to name a few off the top of my head). I’m unsure if my focii are poorly structured for any type of audience, in this sense, or if my structured approach to my description is simply lacking an audience to connect to. The persistent unknowing -to me- is anxiety, often self-critical, and often quite self-centered in retrospect. But I think, therefore, I am clueless to what the audience is thinking, I’m just trying to paint what I find to be self-evident. I don’t know but my take is usually reduced for the sake of comedy or criticism when I share it, and I adapted around the pressure often as a clown makes fun of themselves. Is it not possible to give a first person account from the mindset of that unique person? Or are the (literary) waters of chaos best left unturned by the piercing “I” of perspective? I’m assuming no questions here are dumb… Just the dummies asking them, which I have been called much worse than so I’m not bothered if anyone wants to mock or joke, or even correct me where it is clear my understanding is shallow. I’m not trying to be an accomplice of any type of speech, just a sponge for the perspective, aspiring for greatness and world domination and whatever maligned purpose people usually associate with loners.

My own challenge is like settling on a message, seeing it my own unique way, but struggling to see how I am wrong with my perspective because my judgement was proven to be incorrect by someone along the way (intro: empirical minded father, stressed out mother, older half-siblings, or a discriminatory teacher eloquently “educating” their approved gospel.)

Because my perspective is not always right, I’ve found how often one can be mislead by such presumptuous descriptions, and this translates to writing, as it may appear, to be pressing an issue. I may be totally misconstruing your advice, but despite how often I use “I” in this message, I am confused over first person narratives and the way they are defined within stories, especially today. I also wade through the waters of social media, so the collapse of literature online into effective points and contextual narratives is definitely effecting my own perspective.

I am I am I am I am probably going to use “I” in perpetuity from now on here, because not enough people are challenging one another today in my honest opinion, just throwing shades of color over conflict. I’m also not writing a novel here, just running my mouth. Thank you for sharing your knowledge and perspective ☮️🧡🎶

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also, I ordered a used copy of invisible monster, to get a better sense of narratives. I have not read it but hopefully I get it in the mail, seeing that they (USPS) told me a book I ordered was effectively delivered to me today, though it was not in the mailbox it was delivered to, unless of course the courier misplaced the locker box key and it’s actually sitting in the mail box out front my home but I just cannot access it.

Sometimes I wonder if my own first person takes are simply devalued in today’s world, or I am just a product of my environment 🤣

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I remember hearing you say in one of your appearances on a writing podcast that “people like people who like people” and, as mentioned above, that this is a way to make your character more likable. In hearing that it instantly dawned on me why I kept feeling like part of my story wasn’t working. Without getting too much into the hairy details, basically my protagonist pulled a prank on his entire office. It was a major move that derailed the company. The type of thing that employees dream about doing when they quit a crappy job.

But the problem was that it came across as though my character didn’t like anyone he worked with. And because of that he seemed more like an asshole than a guy you wanted to root for. So, I added brief sections in the chapter where he describes different things he likes about the various people he worked with. What their hobbies are, how many grand children they have, what types of pets, how relatable they are, and so on. After that my chapter worked SO much better. My protagonist went from seeming like an angry neckbeard to coming across as someone who is on the side of the rest of the workers who are being shit on.

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Really appreciate these lessons, Chuck, thank you.

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founding

Great meat to chew on.

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I read in Consider This about submerging the “I” and have been practicing. This is one of the most effective pieces of advice I’ve been able to implement so easily. If goat stories are what I think they are, I like to use them to share something embarrassing about the main character to gain the reader’s trust/interest. Would like to read one of your winning apostolic entries for the best parents contests! 🙃

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When they found my father's body the police gave me his wallet. Inside was a poem our local newspaper had published in 1972. I'd written that poem and my teacher had submitted it, a poem protesting the war in Vietnam. No shit, my father had carried that clipping for almost forty years.

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…and I’m in tears. 😭

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Awesome stuff Chuck! Thanks for sharing your wisdom as always.

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I always felt stories written in the 1st person make the book more engrossing.. Atleast for me. Now, I kinda know why.

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Like those youtube to-do tutorials. They give a 15 to 30 minute preamble about how much they weighed when they were born and an entire life-story that may or may not have anything to do with the goddamned chili they are teaching us to make. Bitch, I didn't come here to play. Cook!

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Please forgive me for starting with an anecdote. My goal is always to move from an illustration to the abstract. I wouldn't share a tiresome story if it didn't come to some (one hopes) helpful point.

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As much as I enjoyed the anecdote, Candice has spoken! It's official now. For the next post, no nostalgic foreplay. Off the with the clothes as soon as possible lol

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I would watch any of your cooking youtube videos without hesitation. The longer the preamble the better. My thought process would be "Any minute now he's going to go into double penetration etiquette. No?! Just a cooking video. Fantastic chili execution. It's like Snoop Dogg. It's been years but it never gets old. If I see Snoop Dogg in a commercial or ad I will stop what I'm doing because I absolutely have to know what he's selling. I still don't know why? I can't be the only one who does this. How do you guys do that?

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I just have one thing to say in response to your Snoop Dogg commercials. Fo' shizzle my nizzle.

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Isn't that just a preference then? I prefer the Palahniuk's and Dogg's to narrate my life as opposed to someone you may not care much for on YouTube? The YouTubers also get money based on clicks and duration spent watching their content.

Candice I couldn't see colors when I was first born and everytime an object left my field of view it vanished forever. These lived experiences have shaped how I will show you how to make this simple two ingredient cheesecake. First please smash that like and subscribe button, otherwise my introductions will become longer in future videos to try and capture lost revenue.

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You mean I should be reasonable and understanding? Seriously, where's the fun in that? ;)

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If you don't connect with me on an emotional level how will you ever understand what it is to create cheesecake? You might as well press that dislike button while you still can.

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The emotional cheesecake is a lie.

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Oh no no no. Im speaking more to your rule of hiding the "I" as much as possible and letting the audience live the experience for themselves. I wasn't writing about your anecdote.

This substack is fabulous and delights me to no end. Intellectually speaking I live for meeting someone who could destroy me while eating their breakfast but they don't do it because they are supportive and kind. But we both know they could totally destroy me. Thank you Mr. Palahniuk.

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Much needed advice! Thank you, Chuck! I took your advice about writing about growing up in a family owning concession stands. It’s been quite a ride remembering it all, writing it uninterrupted— even my night time dreams have changed! One night, there was a dream about a white horse walking through my second childhood home to save us from thieves. The other was protecting Sassy and I from being attacked by giant ants. Sass wanted to play with them! The sound coming from the movement of their jaws was deafening. Thank you for taking the time out!!! ♥️🐾🍕

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I needed this before I wrote my latest non fiction that reads like fiction. I'm only here cause I heard Chuck on joe Rogan and he made me want to write again. It's been 25 years since I did. Can you read this and tell me how to actually write? Thanks

https://pincheeddieg.substack.com/p/dj-at-a-strip-club?utm_campaign=post&utm_medium=web&utm_source=

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