When I sent a close friend of many years a proud copy of a novel I’d been writing for quite a while, she came back with a couple comments. One, she liked the characters (yeah!); two, she thought the sex scenes were good (coming from an aficionado of the form); and three, I sure used ‘fuck’ a lot in my story.

But Gorman uses ‘fuck’ and ‘fucked’ and ‘fucked up’ like most people employ prepositions. Fuck if I could. I’m not going to say I love everything he writes, but when he’s on, he makes me think this writing thing is worth doing. Makes me want to head down to Starbucks for a four-shot cappuccino and get started.

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Photo by Nathan Dumlao on Unsplash

Why No One is Reading Your Writing — I think you know why” is worth a few thousand claps, maybe more. I won’t paraphrase the piece; he can damn well speak for himself. So read it and come back. I can wait.

I’d add Gorman’s happy, smiling mugshot here, except he don’t smile. Kinda like that guy hanging at the 7-Eleven sipping coffee, at least I think that’s what he’s doing.

Steven Pressfield has an advice book “No One Wants to Read Your Sh*t,” another kick in the ass kind of article for writers — “The Most Important Writing Lesson I Ever Learned.” Gorman’s article reminds me of it. So read this one too.

How Gorman puts it is:

Pressfield’s comment is no doubt the more professional, but Gorman’s sentiment made me smile. Continuing in this vein:

I suspect hanging with Gorman at a 7-Eleven, or even Starbucks might not be good for my health. He’d get me in too much trouble with the f-bombs. Fuckery? He really said that?

I don’t remember the first writer I ran across who said he/she/they didn’t write for any reason other than the need. Gorman is that kind of writer, which makes his work engaging — because he needs to stay engaged. I spent years writing poetry after my son Ryan killed himself — because I had to. That or just give up and crawl in a hole. Some lines, even verses, would drop on my brain from outside myself and other lines, reading them in edits made me cringe and want to give up.

Finding what’s authentic is the real work. If you write, you know in your heart when you’re coasting. Like that eighth grade essay when you just threw some words at the page and called it done so you could chase after that cute girl down the street hoping you could catch what she got.

I agree with Gorman when he says ‘write like nobody’s reading.’ I don’t know how to write for an audience. I know what I’ve enjoyed reading, and sometimes I try to put that into words of my own, always with the hope that someone else might enjoy the same thing. Nothing new under the sun, but you can have fun trying.

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A practicing writer and architect, he is now squandering hours making a mess from writing.

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