why writers write

Here is where we focus on separating the facts from the fiction, identifying what we KNOW from what what we DON'T KNOW about the life and work of Townsend Brown

why writers write

Postby Madison » Fri Jun 23, 2006 7:58 pm

I thought I would respond to something Paul said earlier in this section, about why it was important for him not to get off the track of "truth" as difficult as it might get while investigating Townsend Browns life and work. There has been so much disinformation, so many flights of fancy. In a world that automatically assumes that anything written about the man will have "The Philadelphia Experiment" branded all over it.

But instead of following that twisting path of half truths and sometimes pure fabrications, Paul is revealing something far more exciting and and yes, I believe, TRUE.

And then I asked myself why would someone devote all this time and energy to this project?

Yes, I am sure that there will be financial rewards and even fame at the end of the trail for Paul. But I don't REALLY believe that is his main reason in approaching this subject. This is a great country and anyone with any sort of enthusiasm for doing it can at least make a good living and some, who seem to be luckier or perhaps more in line with the flow, can go beyond all expectations.

So if you can make money doing anything.......... Why beat yourself up mentally going in this direction? I ran across a guote from a famous writer and I think that it might start to answer that question.

And with this post here I ask others to step in too and add your answers to "Why do writers really write?"

E.L. Doctorow (writer of "Ragtime" (great!) and "Book of Daniel") answered that question this way:

"I've never had a rational or thoughful answer to that question. Basically, you want to make something that STANDS. Its really very selfish. You want to make something thats good and true and something that didn't exist before. You hope it will last. Thats all, thats all but its EVERYTHING. its a monumentally arrogant wish, and desire, but its also very simple. Just out of your own inadequate mind, to make something that stands and holds and becomes something that someone else will use to walk us up another bit further toward whatever it is that our destiny might be. Enlightenment, one hopes. Salvation. Redemption, All those things."

Paul, my suggestiong . When you find yourself with the blankets pulled over your head and the thoughts hitting you "WHY,WHY, WHY am I doing this? Thats maybe the answer.

And I think that maybe thats the answer from Townsend Brown too. I never met the man but I'll bet thats the answer.

Vegas in November for all the bright reef fish out there! Madison
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and why do singers, sing?

Postby Victoria Steele » Fri Jun 23, 2006 8:56 pm

Great post Madison. Yes! Vegas in November!

And you know my standing deal at Margaritaville! Though we might end up being too big a crew to hit that place all at once!

Speaking of Jimmy Buffett (hello there, if your ears have been burning!) I need to copy some of the lyrics from his "Coastal Confessions". Paul, are you familiar with this song?

Part of it

"They say that time is like a river
And stories are the key to the past
But now I'm stuck in between
Here at my typing machine
Trying to come up with some words that will last.

Its so easy to see that we live history
and if I just find my beat
I know I'll land on my feet
I always do hadn't got a clue
Does it come from above?"

A gift to you Paul from a parrothead for sure. Victoria
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the space

Postby Elizabeth Helen Drake » Fri Jun 23, 2006 9:06 pm

Hello Madison and Victoria,

Thankyou for your refreshing new post. Interesting to just simply ask talented and inspired people WHY they are doing something. When you get a wildly honest answer , like the one we all got from Trickfox recently, its a wonderful and exhilarating experience!

And thankyou Victoria for bringing Jimmy Buffetts lyrics to our attention again though they are never very far!

It is interesting though that one of the phrases "happens" to be " but now I'm stuck in between" which was our topic of conversation just this morning. So I take that as sort of a boost from the "parallel" side and just wanted to express my appreciation.

Oh, Victoria .... I know there has been a delay in the story and I have no real idea of when Paul will post. I just wanted to thank you for not chewing too badly on him .... its fun knowing that you are out there .... but the wait will be worth it, I promise you. This one will be ..... well, worth waiting for. Elizabeth
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Re: why writers write

Postby Paul S. » Sat Jun 24, 2006 2:41 pm

This is a wonderful, supportive and encouraging post, Madison, and I truly thank you for it...

Madison wrote:In a world that automatically assumes that anything written about the man will have "The Philadelphia Experiment" branded all over it.


Many moons ago, when Linda Brown and I first embarked on this project, we used the analogy of bowling to describe how challenging it would be. We're trying to bowl a "strike" down what amounts to a very narrow alley, and on either side there are deep gutters: on one side, the gutter of dis-information like TPX, on the other side the limits of conventional scientific understanding. It would be very, very easy to roll the ball into either one of those gutters. So far, though, I think we're doing an adequate job of aiming straight for the pins.

But instead of following that twisting path of half truths and sometimes pure fabrications, Paul is revealing something far more exciting and and yes, I believe, TRUE.


And I cannot tell you how valuable it has proven to be to have people here who can hear the first raw inklings of where this story is going to take us and have them say, "OK, we'll go there with you."

And then I asked myself why would someone devote all this time and energy to this project?


Uh... I often wonder if my wife isn't asking herself the same thing. But I know she's along for the long haul, and we are very very fortunate that our domestic situation here is secure and stable enough that we can afford to follow this trail without sacrificing home or hearth. I dunno, maybe we're a bit too comfortable, but everything seems about right to me.

"Why do writers really write?"

E.L. Doctorow (writer of "Ragtime" (great!) and "Book of Daniel") answered that question this way:

"I've never had a rational or thoughful answer to that question. Basically, you want to make something that STANDS. Its really very selfish. You want to make something thats good and true and something that didn't exist before. You hope it will last. Thats all, thats all but its EVERYTHING. its a monumentally arrogant wish, and desire, but its also very simple. Just out of your own inadequate mind, to make something that stands and holds and becomes something that someone else will use to walk us up another bit further toward whatever it is that our destiny might be. Enlightenment, one hopes. Salvation. Redemption, All those things."


I am going to print that paragraph in big bold letters and put it up over my desk where I'll be sure to see it every day.

Paul, my suggestiong . When you find yourself with the blankets pulled over your head and the thoughts hitting you "WHY,WHY, WHY am I doing this? Thats maybe the answer.


Maybe I'll pin a copy on the inside of my blankets, too. Or on the ceiling, where I'll see it first thing every morning...

Thanks again for a wonderful post.

--PS
Paul Schatzkin
aka "The Perfesser"
"At some point we have to deal with the facts, not what we want to believe is true." -- Jack Bauer
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Re: and why do singers, sing?

Postby Paul S. » Sat Jun 24, 2006 2:59 pm

Victoria Steele wrote:Speaking of Jimmy Buffett (hello there, if your ears have been burning!) I need to copy some of the lyrics from his "Coastal Confessions". Paul, are you familiar with this song?


Oh yeah, we've talked about that song around here. Maybe I should go listen to it again.

And, you might want to pay careful attention to the spoken bits in the fade-out at the end. Something about peanut butter...

--PS
Paul Schatzkin
aka "The Perfesser"
"At some point we have to deal with the facts, not what we want to believe is true." -- Jack Bauer
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Location: Psych Ward

peanut butter

Postby Victoria Steele » Sat Jun 24, 2006 5:41 pm

Hi Paul,

Yes, I have read this somewhere about Buffett. That he keeps a "survival kit" with him most of the time and one of the things in it is a jar of peanut butter. I'll try to find that for you. Someone I guess had told him that you can survive for days and days on Peanut butter and he has that and just a spoon. Funny to think of a multimillionaire running around with a jar of peanut butter in his suitcase! So I guess swiping somebodys peanut butter when you set such store in it would have been a thing worth a coastal confession huh?

I just can't imagine what could be so important that you would "hold the presses for it". Thats why I haven't bugged you. I know its gonna be good.

Oh, thanks for putting that picture up on the White Ponies discussion group. I have a feeling thats going to be a good place to go so that we can communicate a little bit with Linda and that picture is really all we have of the things that mean a whole lot to her. (other than of course, I know this book) She doesn't seem to mind going in that direction and actually its wonderful having that thin thread to her. I have discovered that if I just sit down and shut up for awhile I can learn alot from her. Victoria
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