My Writing Doesnít Suck, You Do

I never did anything out of the blue
It has come to my attention that my writing sucks. Several of my closest and most trusted advisors, namely Judas, Brutus and Latoya have complained that many of the jokes are too obscure or just not even funny. My first reaction was to blame it on Margaret Cho. But deep down, I have always known they were right. She was right.

I suppose being a good writer means choosing your audience and then making those "wacky conjunctions" at just the right level of difficulty, so as to amuse and surprise not confuse and capsize. For my audience, I chose two young revolutionaries I met some years back in gay Paris. Revolutionaries love to read, and my web site translates very well into French. But I havenít heard from them yet, so I must assume they died in a bizarre moped accident involving several croissants and a loose rhinoceros. What do you do when your intended audience is dead? You look for the nearest one and grab it. For me, itís a small group of long shoreman from Nantucket, who when not reaping the gifts of the Atlantic, like to fish for content on the internet. But what if youíre not sure who your audience is? Well then I suppose youíd better make it accessible. But how to be more accessible without selling out?

Then I remembered an old trick from my days of reading English translations of books written in Chinese. They would always have little footnotes at the bottom of the page to explain the historical references like why this group of people hates that group of people or why taxes are always collected on the 5th rather than the 3rd day of each month. Footnotes can be very exciting in a detached, bottom of the page sort of way. So I decided I too should have footnotes, but instead of footnotes I will call them tips.

The tip notes will serve many functions. They might serve as mission statements at times, at other times, scoldings from a wily old basketball referee or apologies from ex-lovers coming way too late. When you see a Tip note, youíre already on the road less traveled as far as the main structure of the site goes. That is, youíre not here to read a Robert Frost poem (90% of you) and you didnít get to the movies page by typing "pedophilia and russian" or "massive ejaculations" (the other 10%). Watch, now this page will suddenly have three billion customers served, the combination of 'Frost' and 'naked Russian children' proving irresistible to AOL users. Anyway, since youíve gotten this far, you probably have some notion of what this site is about. You probably donít need any stupid tip notes. In fact, that was a really dumb idea. Letís forget the whole thing. Thank God.

But please feel obliged to provide any constructive criticism you may have. Also, anyone interested in submitting good material should probably send it to a real web site, but youíre welcome to send it to me if you want.

Weíre all in this together.
and that is why my writing sucks The Other Reason Why It Sucks

And time yet for a hundred indecisions
And for a hundred visions and revisions,


I can only really edit with a printed copy. I have to be able to circle words, draw lots of arrows and scribble in margins. My fingers have to be in contact with the text, not far away on some distant keyboard. And with so many isolated parcels of text on the site, itís too much trouble to get them all in printed form, so they can be properly edited. And that is why my writing sucks.

[2001]

Fun Note: whip the mouse over the guy on the right


Interviewer: Would you agree to show us a sample of your rought drafts?

Nabokov: Iím afraid I must refuse. Only ambitious nonentities and hearty mediocrities exhibit their rough drafts. It is like passing around samples of oneís sputum.

Interviewer: Coldbacon, would you agree to show us a sample of your rought drafts?

Coldbacon: Sure.

sputum sample one sputum sample two sputum sample three the latest draft - front the latest draft - back

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