Monday, January 30, 2006

Tai chi and writing

Two years ago my shoulder froze, a writing-induced trauma. I was headed for steroid treatment and possibly surgery. A friend suggested tai chi, so I joined a class at the local community college. It helped unfreeze my shoulder. That got me in. The practice made me stay. Even gray-haired lady writer types can engage in this meditative martial arts practice.

A sample tai chi realization: "Keep your eyes on the horizon," the Sifu says.

Of course. Don't forget the big picture. Don't get bogged down in the clutter of details. Always remain mindful of that wide horizon you were after to begin with. Be conscious of what set you on the path to the story. Don't lose that in revision. Sounds familiar, no?

Sunday, January 29, 2006

Why write with a broken tusk?

Welcome to this blog with an odd name. The Broken Tusk, my 1996 collection of stories about the elephant headed Hindu god Ganesha, will be out again later this year (thank you, August House), which is part of the reason for this blog. The rest of it is this: Ganesha is the writer's ally and helper. He removes obstacles. The tusk stands for sacrifice, a promise made and kept, in the service of creating a perfect story-poem. All of which any writer will understand.

This blog will contain occasional reflections on writing process, and links to other people's thoughts about it.

More to come.