I’ll always remember the first review I ever got for a stand-up comedy show. Sometime in the late eighties, when I had just started to land paying gigs, the Minneapolis Star-Tribune reviewed a show that featured me and several other ‘up and coming’ comics. The reviewer, apparently having exhausted all of the show business metaphors then in use, and at a loss for a way to describe my act in comedy terms, instead went for a more visceral approach, describing my part of the show as being like:
…taking a cold bath with someone you dislike.
The American dramatist Gene Fowler once said, “Writing is easy: All you do is sit staring at a blank sheet of paper until drops of blood form on your forehead.” There’s some encouragement for you.
I wrote and published my first book a while back, and I learned a great deal from the experience. I feel obliged to share what I learned with aspiring writers. The word ‘aspiring,’ of course, is derived from the Latin aspirare, to breathe, which implies that aspiring to write is as easy as breathing. In my experience, writing is more difficult than that, although both, for me, involve some wheezing. Continue reading