Talking out loud to the net

I saw Twit­ter from near­ly the begin­ning — and cyn­i­cal­ly ignored it.* In the begin­ning, I may have had good rea­sons. At the time, I was com­plete­ly offline, amass­ing mil­lions of words in man­u­script.

Even­tu­al­ly I got on @michaelstutz, but retained my ambiva­lence.

Some­thing has recent­ly changed all that — a sure, sub­tle change in the air, that you can feel, that means this is a time for being and cre­at­ing online and shar­ing ideas. And the way Twitter’s evolved in recent years, espe­cial­ly with longer char­ac­ter counts and the addi­tion of threads, it brings new & excit­ing pos­si­bil­i­ties for writ­ing. Orig­i­nal Twit­ter, or “Old Twit­ter,” is almost entire­ly a long bor­ing stream of ‘sta­tus updates.’ Not any­more. There’s no doubt that the whole thing’s sud­den­ly com­pelling.

And now it took me no time at all to get blocked by my favorite sto­ry-thread­ing Inter­net kook — who crossed the line of dece­ny by doxxing inno­cents as part of one of his rants.

* Well, not entire­ly true. I’ve run a sta­ble of char­ac­ters, as an exper­i­ment in online fic­tion, since the begin­ning.

Instant Writing

Obsessed about a new kind of writ­ing, some­thing more inter­est­ing, and imme­di­ate, than what’s hap­pen­ing in social media or any­where else, cer­tain­ly books—and it was seen in the thrim and shim­mer of the ligh­trays and lush at a dis­co loft par­ty last night. There for a sec­ond, a mir­rored moment alone, when my ancient idea of “instant writ­ing” was haunt­ing me hard, some of it came out quick­ly in great nat­ur­al clarity—it was strong, ver­nal, and maybe the only way out that was rea­son­ably pos­si­ble.

Because look: I’ve cre­at­ed a moun­tain range of backed-up work in jour­nals and files and piles of pock­et note­books all to tran­scribe, and there’s sim­ply no way to gath­er it en masse togeth­er and orga­nize it with­out stop­ping, and time, and mean­while more—the ideas keep gush­ing forth in their fast-flow­ing froth and I know that the most like­ly way of fin­ish­ing these big leg­ends and books is maybe to write them all out in real­time just as they hap­pen, and instant­ly with fast strokes & brushthought life is trans­mut­ed to word.

Silenced.

Con­trol the medi­um and you con­trol what’s pos­si­ble on it. Lan­guage is the medi­um of thought. So the way to cur­tail thought is to take away the tools that make it pos­si­ble — ban words and phras­es, change their mean­ings, out­law cer­tain expres­sions … and sud­den­ly whole ideas are for­bid­den, if not impos­si­ble.

Today the so-called “lit­er­ary” press is among the worst of the polit­i­cal­ly-cor­rect con­trollers. That’s why con­tem­po­rary lit­er­a­ture is so weak and use­less — it has no cul­tur­al cachet, the nov­el and poet­ry have almost no pres­ence or pow­er in pub­lic life. “Lit­er­ary” is a syn­onym for weak-mind­ed, aca­d­e­m­ic PC junk that isn’t worth your time.

I won’t sup­port them, and in return they won’t sup­port me, either — Cir­cuits of the Wind isn’t sim­plis­tic enough for them, they hate a lot of words and ideas in the book, and they sure don’t like white males — dead or alive.

So I was hon­ored to be a part of Loren Feldman’s doc­u­men­tary film Silenced: Our War on Free Speech, pro­duced by Mike Cer­novich. It’s exact­ly about that. And a lot of us aren’t shut­ting up about it any­more.

Watch Silenced on Vimeo.

Silenced: Our War on Free Speech