Posts Tagged ‘Liquid Imagination’

What have we (my dynamic team of editors, artists and publishing gurus) accomplished in the last year at Liquid Imaginaton Online? For starters, for November our website received 72,404 total internet hits. We began a marketing program to promote New York Times Bestselling author David Farland’s newsletter for writers. I, personally, graduated college with an associates degree in journalism to be applied to marketing, and I also obtained the National English Honor Society’s Sigma Kappa Delta. Besides that, the fruit of a novel-seed I planted a ways back will be published through Dopamalovi Books.

We also published a werewolf anthology in several different formats for your convenience. You can hear the wolf howling here: http://liquid-imagination.com/toothandclaw/

Below are the stats of Liquid Imagination Online (www.Liquid-Imagination.com). The stats can be found here: www.Liquid-Imagination.com/webalizer. Within the pages of LI, you may glimpse something beautiful, you may get a whiff of magic. That’s because dreams are sealed within each webpage, like the dreams within your own heart. We, at LI, believe we can fly. We believe in the magic of stories and poetry and artwork. We embrace technology in all its forms. And while many other webzines, ezines, publications and print journals are folding, Liquid Imagination will be around for a long time.

This is the future! This is 2012! And we represent what you’re reading!

Never forget: we’re all in this together!

Yippie!

Monthly Statistics for November 2011
Total Hits 72404
Total Files 39976
Total Pages 14656
Total Visits 6285
Total KBytes 1148240
Total Unique Sites 4477
Total Unique URLs 1879
Total Unique Referrers 1169
Total Unique User Agents 1221
. Avg Max
Hits per Hour 107 2538
Hits per Day 2585 6571
Files per Day 1427 3525
Pages per Day 523 961
Sites per Day 159 485
Visits per Day 224 283
KBytes per Day 41009 109470

It’s called convergence media. Pass it on!

Liquid Imagination

The story is called Wholly Matrimony by Kenton Yee. The voice talent is none other than the fabulous Robert Eccles, a talented horror writer in his own right. Sue Babcock, business director of Liquid Imagination, converged the media.

Enjoy!

Two more days to enter the “Daily Kick Contest” and receive
recognition from a New York Times Bestselling author. Prize money and Recognition! Go here to view contest
details: http://www.liquid-imagination.com/farland/contest.html

WOO-HOO!! Issue No. 9 is here! This could not happen without the talent of Kevin Wallis, Sue Babcock, AJ Brown (blog post), Dare Kent, Jack Rogers, Brandon Rucker, Robert Eccles, Jezzy Wolfe and Stephen W. Roberts! A HUGE thanks to all of our contributors!

Liquid Imagination No. 9!

by John “JAM” Arthur Miller

 

Battle not with monsters, lest ye become a monster, and if you gaze into the abyss, the abyss gazes also into you.

 

          -Friedrich Nietzsche

I gazed into the abyss. Something looked out. A large eye the size of our sun, glaring with hostility. Who dares? it demanded. I smiled and said, Just me… just me. It became confused and blinked.

Each time it blinked the light of the universe went out; a total darkness of the soul seethed with an icy chill that permeated and enveloped all. Stop blinking, I cried. It laughed and shouted, Stop confusing me. But I couldn’t stop confusing it because I couldn’t stop asking it questions. My finite intelligence, although genius among my own kind, was far below its infinite epiphanies; the finite was too much for for the infinite. I crippled it when I informed the beast from the abyss about love. Love? What is love? it cried.

The beast from the abyss slid back into its sludge of bile. Nietzshe rolled over in his grave, and the sun became a new day’s dawn somewhere back in physical reality.

I remained where I hovered, at the edge of the abyss in the bubble of a dream. Aren’t you going to wake up now? the monster from the abyss demanded, its giant eye permanently opened, unblinking.

I smiled and said, But I have more to teach you.

Then I leapt into the abyss, splashed within the bile, felt cold logic slip up my flesh and cover my head. Black, cold vomit slid into my mouth. I swallowed down jagged little pills. The monster screamed in agonizying joy, shouting, It’s too much… too much!

It was just enough – just enough because now I shared the secrets of the abyss. Nietzsche was right: the abyss met my gaze. But more besides, for the abyss crept inside my face, inside my mind even as my essence seeped into it. I sucked in wisdom it had vomited out, and it coddled me by the cold embrace of eternity.

Together we become one, the finite and infinite—organic flesh and the cold kiss of graveyard soil.

10 words per day is the price of admission What is it? Join Liquid Imagination’s private web office. Writers and editors gather to chat and write, to workshop and edit. The price of admission is just 10 words per day, written by you. If you only show up once per month, then when you log into the site all you have to do is post 10 creative words of prose or poetry. How much you write beyond the 10 words is up to you.

You should join to jumpstart your writing, each and every day. You should join if you’re a writer who wants to network with other writers. You should join if you’re an editor who wants to network with other editors. Over 370 writers, editors, poets and artists belong to this private office. Members have contributed work to a wide-range of publications from “Necrotic Tissue” to “GUD Magazine.” A lesser number of members edit a wide-range of publications.

Simply log on to American Zoetrope and sign up. It’s free. American Zoetrope is a website created by Francis Ford Coppola (Godfather fame) for directors and producers to work in an interactive online community. It’s also used by writers of script and fiction. They have open boards to post stories and poems, as well as open boards to post artwork and music. Everything from writing flash fiction to novellas entices you to get involved. Once you join, look up “John Arthur Miller” and request an invite to my private web office called “Liquid Imagination.” Then begin to network with writers and editors, and be prepared to pay the price of admission: 10 words per day.

Let your creativity flow at Liquid Imaginatoin’s private web office (weblink won’t work until you’ve joined American Zoetrope) located at American Zoetrope.

Welcome!

Ray Bradbury’s name sells books. But I’ll bet there’s one thing you don’t know about him. And this is something that I know (or think I know), and it concerns his writing. You see, I studied his writing and came away confused. Then I took English Composition in the local junior college, and it led me to understand something concerning Ray Bradbury’s writing. I would like to share this with you, but I would also like to share a story I wrote using these learned technique. The story is already posted at Aurora Wolf and it’s called “Watching Paint Dry.” You see, I was chatting with some writers (online) about the challenge of taking the cliché of watching paint dry and trying to write about it… but making it INTERESTING.

362943w4at4q6qt5.jpg wolf - Aurora Borealis image by johnsadim

Well, I did the best I could with that concept. But I also used another technique called TOPIC SENTENCES. And I am convinced that Ray Bradbury used this is many of his works. Not all of them, but he employed the TOPIC SENTENCE in enough of his short stories to indicate the usefulness and validity of the technique.

bradbury-1.jpg Ray Bradbury image by AngusYounngACDC09

First of all, the writer is supposed to use a TOPIC SENTENCE in all written work. Books on writing state this over and over, but many writers in the small-press don’t do this. I first learned of TOPIC SENTENCES from the Studio at Illinois Central College (the Studio is a tutoring program for colleges students, and well worth it!). The instructor spoke of T.E.D. TED helps us write essays. The acronym stands for T (TOPIC); E (EVIDENCE); and D (DISCUSSION). It’s the proper way to set up a paragraph while writing an essay or article.

Now let’s take this into fiction. Let’s change the EVIDENCE and DISCUSSION to only one word: DETAILS. That changes our acronym of TED to TD (TOPIC SENTENCE and DETAILS). And let’s pretend TD is closely related to VD (the sexual STD). You want TD to infect your readers; you want your readers to know exactly what you’re writing about. Hitting them over the head with rich details is great, but without a TOPIC SENTENCE writers jump the gun. Readers become more quickly lost. TOPIC SENTENCES can prevent this from happening.

After learning about TED, I went back and reread my favorite Ray Bradbury story “The Kilimanjaro Device.” It is quite simply the most awesome story I’ve ever read. Not a stroke of horror resides in it, but the AWE I feel while reading this story sends tingles down my spine. The almost-psychic connection between the main character and a hunter in the bar (during their conversation in which they often communicate by citing what each other is thinking) is incredible. And then Bradbury does something considered taboo by many publishers: he uses this hunter as a prop, but does NOT include him in the ending of the story.

In today’s publishing world (especially among the small-press), we are hit over the head with the same two clichés by publishers: LESS IS MORE and REMOVE UNIMPORTANT CHARACTERS.

Well, Bradbury didn’t do that. His hunter character isn’t in the conclusion of the story. To some, that would indicate that the hunter is a nonessential character. But I learn from this story that Bradbury uses the “nonessential character” as a prop to bring out facts, feelings and emotions (even an ambiance of mood) that would not have existed in the story had he not included the hunter (nonessential character). Thus, the nonessential character becomes essential, but is NOT a part of the conclusion.

Oh, way to break the rules, Ray Bradbury! You teach and entertain us so well!

While reading much of Bradbury’s work, you will find TOPIC SENTENCES setting up the each paragraph he writes. Especially in his award-winning “I Sing the Body Electric,” another awesome short-story read and highly recommended.

I wrote “Watching Paint Dry” with the concept of TOPIC SENTENCES, and that was all I worried about originally. But as I wrote it, I realized it began to sound similar to Ray Bradbury. Now nobody can write as good as he can, but just read my story and consider the similarities between it and ‘some’ of Bradbury’s fiction. I didn’t set out to write like Mr. Bradbury; I just set out to use TOPIC SENTENCES. I think you will find many similarities, the only detraction being my story falls beneath the genius of Bradbury (but that goes without saying for 99.9% of all writers in the world today).

My friend and role model AJ Brown (see his blog linked to the left) says he wants to write in the style and methods of the old-time writers, wanting to write longer works. He doesn’t see publishers putting out fiction similar to the old horror writers (AJ is a dark fiction and horror writer of repute). Is it possible that something new, that some new concept that is “outside the box” in today’s publishing world, is it possible that something OLD could simply be rediscovered and reinterpreted as something NEW? Is it possible that writing from the Twenties to the Nineteen-Sixties could have an impact on today’s world of instant coffee, fast food and new experimental fiction? I find it remarkable that great literary writers like Hawthorne are REDISCOVERED in different generations for new things and concepts. What Hawthorne was celebrated for originally isn’t what he’s known for today.

Sometimes thinking (and writing) outside the box in order to create something new requires only visiting the past writers of yesterday. Sometimes studying their work adds value to today. People talk about Lovecraft and Bradbury, but do they study how they wrote? What valuable lessons does Bradbury bring to today’s fiction? What are the writers today missing that Bradbury had?

Ladies and Gentlemen, I present to you the TOPIC SENTENCE. I also present to you my ‘attempt’ at using the TOPIC SENTENCE in my story published at Aurora Wolf. You can read just the first 3 paragraphs and understand what I’m talking about. Then skip the rest if you want. Lesson learned. Or continue reading “Watching Paint Dry.” I pray my story breaks the rules just enough to be different, but upholds the rules just enough to be acceptable.

The choice is yours whether to use TOPIC SENTENCES in your writing or not. The choice is also yours to figure out how to use TOPIC SENTENCES (I won’t explain it; you’ll master it fully if you discover the INFO on your own). Of course, you can choose to ignore this information. But then, it is my impression and opinion that you’ll be ignoring Ray Bradbury’s advice. And although he hasn’t come out and said WRITE LIKE THIS, I think his fiction speaks for itself, as well as the TOPIC SENTENCES on every page in all his works.

1873235365.jpg Sole sun image by haven75

While this is merely a BLOG post, I dedicated this BLOG Post to Ray Bradbury. I also dedicate my story “Watching Paint Dry” to Mr. Bradbury. He’ll never know of me nor read my story. But that’s not the point. The point is directing my attention to something wonderful and great, and that is the power of TOPIC SENTENCES, as well as the structure of pure genius found within that most fabulous story “The Kilimanjaro Device.”

You can buy Bradbury’s work here to read “The Kilijamaro Device.” It’s a short story in his anthology of short-stories entitled “I Sing the Body Electric.” And while you may not love it (but only if something’s major wrong with you), you will find that there are other concepts within that story that I haven’t discussed, things most writers (including and especially me) cannot even come close to duplicating. And if you don’t believe me, read the story. Some of you may have to read the story twice or thrice, because there are overlapping layers (like onion peels) that deserve to be uncovered. Also, I would honor discussion concerning this story by anyone and everyone.

Read my story here at Aurora Wolf, if you wanbt. But definitely buy Ray’s story here at Amazon.com.

NOTE: Since Sue Babcock set this BLOG up for me and called it JAM’s Liquid Imagination, I realize that this is MY liquid imagination. As it relates to Liquid Imagination Online and Liquid Imagination the Magazine, but also as it relates to pure creativity and inspiration flowing through me. So it makes sense to me to use this blog for my own creativity and stories. But you will never read my fiction “published” in Liquid Imagination Online or in Liquid Imagination Magazine, so help me God.

Emily Dickinson died in obscurity. Like H.P. Lovecraft, she changed the world through her words. I’d like to talk about her because she did what her heart told her to do; she followed liquid imagination flowing through her. Despite what editors told her, contrary to the “editing rules” of the day, she followed the liquid imagination flowing like a current through her heart. And damn the consequences.

emily-dickinson.gif Emily Dickinson image by georgan

Before I continue, let me explain what liquid imagination means to me. Despite my online magazine “Liquid Imagination Online,” and despite the print “Liquid Imagination Magazine,” those two words mean more than mere publications. At least, to me.

The word Liquid denotes a substance that changes in order to fill in the low spaces, like water.

Imagination is what artists use to create new works.

So Liquid Imagination is the current of creativity through a culture, subculture, or through the individual.

Surreal_World_2008_by_riolcrt.jpg abstract- world image by porro_x 

There is a reason that Emily Dickinson felt compelled to write as she did, and she allowed her creativity (liquid imagination) to flow through her. It is what separates her from her contemporaries.

Despite having only ten poems published in her lifetime, Dickinson became one of America’s most famous poets. Her topics are a Goth’s dream: spirituality, death and solitude. But she also wrote of the natural world with great insight, and she created new and daring idiosyncratic forms by brazenly dancing in the free verse of our minds.

emily_dickinson.jpg emily dickinson image by Megshea24

Dickinson was a recluse, and there are some strange things that occurred in her life, possibly deserving enough to fill tabloids with much speculation and adieu. However, not everybody believes Dickinson became a recluse because of eccentricity; some modern experts claim that Dickinson became a recluse so that she wouldn’t have to fulfill the mold of the single woman of her time.

In those days, if someone’s grandparent was sick, they would often find the “single woman” in town (the spinster) and request that the spinster watch over their sick grandparents or relatives. In those days, a single woman was used not just by the family, but by the entire community. Some modern experts believe Dickinson cultivated her reputation as a hermetic recluse in order that she could write.

And write she did. After her death from kidney disease at the age of 55, her family discovered 1,700 poems Dickinson had penned. Thomas Higginson (literary critic) and Mable Todd (family friend) recognized Dickinson’s talent. They edited her work according to the editing rules of the times, hurting the impact her poetry had upon the reader. They did this to make it FIT into the editing rules of the time, because they could not think outside the box, because they could not fathom the liquid imagination that had flowed through Dickinson, pure creativity compelling her to write from the heart and not according to editing rules.

The purity of her work wasn’t published until 1955, in its natural and original form.

The strange thing is that Dickinson had an opportunity to publish her work while she was alive. A friend who was an assistant editor of a literary magazine attempted to get her to “fix” her poetry according to the standards of the time. Dickinson stoutly refused. It’s ironic that Higginson and Todd “fixed” Dickinson’s poetry after her death, and by “fixing” her poetry, they detracted and lessoned the impact it had upon society.

emily.gif Emily Dickinson image by scrapperdc

Like Dickinson, I’ve decided to not “fix” my fiction according to the editing rules of my time. While I will never become a literary figure of grandiose achievement, I will follow in Dickinson’s example. I will post my fiction at a new blog. It will feature fiction that does not always follow the rules. The reason for this is not because of some silly attempt at post-mortem fame. The reason is to place my feet upon the path leading to my own liquid imagination, to delve within and denounce guidelines created by editors of publications. Because those guidelines are based on the creativity and liquid imagination of those said editors.

But what about my liquid imagination? What about my creativity?

I need to write for me and forsake the guidelines. I want to step outside the box. The dream lingers, the dream that says I need to steep myself into pure creativity and just wallow, to fly on the wings of this dream and just… soar.

e22bscd.jpg Soar image by nightlife001

I want to soar. I need to drown in liquid imagination.

box-4.gif outside the box image by shake69

So I’ll be creating my own writing blog. I guess I could use this blog, but this blog is to promote Liquid Imagination Online (www.Liquid-Imagination.com). It’s not my goal to slide into vanity press publishing by posting my own stories through any faucet of my own publication(s). My friend Brandon Rucker is about to do this very same thing, and he will call it “Rucker Files.” Doing this just feels right. I told my girlfriend that I have enough  publishing credits, somewhere around 70, and I don’t feel the need to do that any more. If I worked at it, I could exceed 100 publishing credits, and then go beyond that.

But for what purpose?

purposeofart.jpg Purpose of Art image by tobisneek

I have been honored to appear in “Necrotic Tissue” 3 times, and “Morpheus Tales.” I won Story of the Month at “SNM Horror Magazine,” and I’ve been interviewed around 10-12 times in either print, online or at blog-radio programs. All these things have been a great honor, and I am thankful.

IG1264.jpg Angel image by lova_03

But now I am moving on. Not for fame or fortune, but for something else entirely, something deeper and purer; I’m moving into the deeper waters, feeling compelled to bring my experimental fiction into blog-presentation where more readers can find it. Criticism and critiques will be welcome, life will go on, the world will continue to turn.

And in obscurity, my fiction (my stories, my babies) will die. But that is okay, because I am chasing a dream. This dream is a liquid current that flows outside the box, an intensity that often works beyond the standards or rules of any age. I want to capture that dream by latching onto something great, by grasping the phantasmic story that wafts through my mind along the currents of liquid imagination.

Alone.jpg alone image by L101O101S010T010

For me, it is my dream. I still have publishing dreams, and I will continue fulfilling those hopes. With 335,000-445,000 internet hits at Liquid Imagination Online (www.Liquid-Imagination.com) per year, and with interest from major distributors concerning our print projects, those dreams will more-than-likely come true soon. But my dream, my own personal dream… is just to breathe in the inspiration that comes floating down that current from the far country.

And then to bring it to life with my pen. To let it live and breathe. To raise it to full maturity and teach it language. Ask it to teach me when I’m older, and follow it down laden paths of gold and silver.

And then to die happy.

John “JAM” Arthur Miller

imagesinbubbles.jpg liquid imagination image by jazzsings57

Note: This is from New York Times Bestselling author David Farland’s Newsletter. To join Mr. Farland’s daily newsletter, go to Runelords and look to the right of the page.

David Farland’s Daily Kick in the Pants—Transcending

One artist that I’ve found inspirational over the years is Niccolo Paganini (1782 to 1840), whose skill with the violin so transcended that of traditional artists in his day that it led to rumors that he had gained his virtuosity through frequent visits from the devil.

Paganini recognized that the violin could be made to do far more than traditional composers imagined, so when he composed, for example, he did things like make his violin mimic farm animals. In one creation, he had his violin echo the sighs and groans and squeals of two people making love—and I suspect that it was this composition that led to tales of women swooning as he played, or throwing off their clothes.

In any case, a few years ago, my son Spencer began to play the tuba, and one day he showed me a video of Oysteen Baadsvik, who made the tuba sound like the didgeridoo, who played two notes at once, who sang into the tuba, and so on. I recognized immediately what he was doing: Baadsvik was transcending the traditional role of his instrument. So I had my son begin to learn his techniques.

For a couple of years now, I’ve felt like my son had hit a plateau. It’s a good plateau—one that has the best tuba players in the country excited—, but it’s a plateau nonetheless.

So I’ve been quite pleased that this week he has made some breakthroughs. He had a composition that he has wanted to play for a year, but it’s written in too high a register. He hasn’t found anyone who could quite get it, and even his instructors couldn’t help. This week he suddenly figured out how to play it, and last night he said that he had figured out how to play a triple-high C.

I’ve been listening to him play this piece, and I have to say, it’s rather mesmerizing, and unlike anything I’d have imagined on a tuba. It almost sounds as if he’s playing a French horn, but there is so much more bulk and depth to the undertones that it could not be played on any other instrument.

I think that our writing should be this way. Very often, new writers look at well-wrought stories and think, “Ah, if I could just write like that!”

They don’t look at traditional tales and try to imagine methods for enlarging the scope of the art. It seems sometimes as if it is hard enough just to follow in the footsteps of some other writer.

Yet consistently, if you look at authors who achieve great popularity, you’ll find that often they’re doing something quite exciting with their craft, they’re transcending the current bounds of the medium. Oh, they might not be great at everything, but they usually are great at something. When you look at James Joyce’s FINNEGAN’S WAKE, you can find plenty of weaknesses. The book is dense and difficult for many reasons, primarily because Joyce abandons so many conventions—yet when it is superb, it’s untouchable.

I often suspect that writers I meet have their own genius brooding within them. They’re just so eager to write like the best, that they don’t really open themselves to developing new methods for transcending the art.

So consider your stories—your characters, your plots, your style. Is there some way that you see to write something better than you’ve seen done before? Can you see how to craft a great simile, or write the most powerful love scene ever written, or develop a new and fascinating character?

If you see even a glimmer of hope, a crack in the darkness, follow it!

Ingram Periodicals Inc (IPI) offered Liquid Imagination Magazine a 4 year distribution contract that we had to let go. But that’s in the past. In the future, we will approach IPI again. We will bring to the table the same exact product style as before, the same high-quality art and the same high-quality stories copy-edited by numerous editors (what enticed IPI the first time). Our first issue of the print Liquid Imagination Magazine will be Dreams and Screams

While we’re offering Dreams and Screams now as a POD through Lulu for for a limited time only, Dreams and Screams will become the first issue of Liquid Imagination Magazine, a product that will be nationally distributed.

This is a sneak preview for our friends, for the fans of our contributors (which are many), and it’s for a limited time only. Within these pages are the best prevously published fiction, as well as the best NEW fiction, from four different publishers (Silver Blade, House of Horror, Aurorawolf, and Liquid Imagination). Dreams and Screams promises to deliver the best fantasy (dreams) and the best horror (screams) from these four hot publishers.

Brandon Rucker’s poetry sets the mood for this entire collection, and the pace is fast and furious. We believe our dreams will scream into your mind through the pages within. The work of each contributor lives and breathes, and it wants to live and breathe inside you.

Open your mind to Dreams and Screams.

dreams_and_screamsOFFICIALCOVER.jpg picture by Liquid_Imagination

Also, look for these other hot anthologies from two of the publishers involved in this product! These will be available soon!

Novus Creatura is put by Aurorawolf!

Stitched Up is put out by House of Horror!