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In Good Humor and Craft: The drDOCTOR readings

In my experience, I’ve found one of two problems in many literary crowds and clubs: they either take themselves too seriously or not seriously enough.

The former never approach their craft with a healthy dose of self-depreciation and humor – let’s just be honest, creative writing is a strange thing to do in 21st-century America. The latter seldom try to create community around the written word or create helpful resources for under-equipped autodidacts out there. When they do, little is curated and most events are open mic. Because of this, the best groups for me have always been groups of two or three who know each other well enough that they can both develop a common sense of humor and work together to improve.

That said, my hope in larger literary communities has been revived by the drDOCTOR reading series.

 

drDOCTOR is the literal child of Dr. Sam Farahmand and Luke Wiget, mdD. They are two MFA grads from The New School, who DReamed the possible DReam of curating a reading series that puts quality over quantity, bringing a few readers to as large an audience as possible.

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For now they run their practice in Bushwick at a library called Mellow Pages (right off the Morgan stop on the L-train). For those outside of New York, go subscribe to the full podcast here. Their full website is drDoctordrDoctor.com.

The Doctors will be in again next Friday, August 29th. You can enjoy some back issues while you wait:


 

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let me quickly show you around…

I’ll make this quick so that we can start getting into the meat of things next week. Like I said yesterday, it’s pretty self-explanatory here, but I’ll show you around since this will be home for awhile.

Over on the left << you’ll notice the main sidebar. If you’re reading in mobile, there’s no distinction between left and right – it’s a continuous stream below V , but for those on their computers, the first thing you’ll find is the progress meter. You’ll know simply by word count if it’s a novel or a short story that I’m working on and I’ll keep you informed on which draft it is. The Faceless (draft 3), for instance, is the novel I’ve worked on for the last year and a half. It’s my fourth novel and if this one doesn’t sell, I’m self-publishing it. I’ve had it with waiting and I want to share something larger with you fine people.

Below the progress meters you’ll Continue reading

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Blog Reborn :: How I Renewed My Purpose Here

:: long story short ::

  1. After my hiatus, I am returning to blogging with renewed purpose: helping artists thrive and helping non-artists recover their imaginations. All over the site, you’ll find opportunities to sign up for the bi-monthly encouragement mailing list, which is different than blog posts. Take advantage of that.
  2. This site will work as an author’s site complete with free stories and articles (wander around to find them). I will house both my copywriting portfolio and my editing portfolio elsewhere. The current layout is here to stay for a long, long time (turns out I needed side bars badly).
  3. I’m super excited for this next season and will walk you through the site layout soon.

:: short story long ::

I had lost my way.

Those of you who kept following in spite of the chaos from this last year have seen me cycle through like half a dozen blog themes, rotate pages in and out, post-delete-revise-repost entries and all of the rest. In addition, I started to host my portfolio on this site – a portfolio that was really two portfolios, editing and copywriting. Was this a poetry blog? Was this an author blog? Was this a site for interviews? Was this candy straight from Wonka?

Yes. Yes it was.

Oh, and that tiny detail:

What on earth happened to the whole reflection shtick that gave birth to the blog in the first place?

I needed to apply one of my tools – content audits – to my own site. Problem: I was in the middle of a move to New York City. So I pulled almost a thousand posts into draft mode – first in small chunks, and then in one massive, six-hundred post exodus. I bid my time (bided my time?), expecting to return in a year or five.

Then I realized I suddenly had unplugged from a rather large outlet. And I started getting cabin fever. I paced long enough to blaze new trails on our apartment’s wooden floor. I stayed up until two in the morning with my mind awhirl like a pinwheel on a propeller hat (think: Lewis Carrol). The time to reevaluate this site would come sooner rather than later.

Much, much sooner.

And suddenly I’m excited about blogging for the first time in a very long time. I’m not dreading it at all – which is how it should be with anything we attempt. Find the things that make you come alive and do those, because the world doesn’t need bad people to be good. The world needs dead people to come alive.

So, down to business: what’s the new goal?

I’ll start with a bit of Coleridge:

“An author has three points to settle: to what sort his work belongs, for what description of readers it is intended, and the specific end, or object, which it is to answer.”

 

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The Vagabond Librarian: a pledge

I wanted to create a bit of a bookend to that last season of blogging for those of you that have followed consistently. And honestly for my own closure, I needed a way to say a good goodbye to that particular season.

I made a little pledge for us. I’m calling it The Vagabond Librarian pledge – it pretty much sums up everything I have tried to do over the last four years on here. Among my other aspirations, I want to grow up and become a resource person, a person of reflection, a person who can learn anything about the world from anyone and who teaches others to do the same.

So here’s what I came up with (click on the text to open):

Vagabond Librarian
• a pledge •

 

I have no idea how many of you will resonate with this, but these are some of the tenants that guided this past season of both my blogging and living. If you’re up for the challenge, choose one of these two ways for to make this pledge with me, a pledge that will keep us connected until I start blogging again in some new form later on:

  1. Print out the pledge, sign it, and take a picture holding it wherever you’re currently vagabonding, traveling, or journeying. If you choose this route, post your pic to Instagram or Twitter or your social media drug of choice and aim it @lanceschaubert with the tag #VagabondLibrarian
  2. Sign the .pdf digitally and shoot me an email that shares the ways and places you plan on practicing the tenants. Make “My Vagabond Librarian Journey” the subject line, please.

Go spread good words and deep thoughts around the world, friends.

 


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Behind the Scenes of Our Barista-Made Film Noir

We wanted you to have the first crack at this behind-the scenes video. Thanks for the continued support, gang.

(The music from the video is “The Match” by The Eastern Sea, used with permission).

Hugs, Coffee, and Murder,


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ps: here are some outtake shots

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For the Love of God

Could we with ink the ocean fill
Oh, God I know how we have tried
where pipe has burst below the Gulf
or man poured into it his pride
of place and privilege till it stank
of sweat and sin and suffering
and floated to a poorer shore,
our lavish petty offering.
And I, I stand before them all
The Worst with pen then pen again
all bleeding in my pocket’s heart
the black, vague, unpublishable.

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a brooklyn, new york author

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