Read or listen to the first 25 pages for free. Ordering links for hard copy on Amazon, Kindle, Nook and Ibook versions.
Just published this on Reality Sandwich http://realitysandwich.com/256534/the-demonization-and-deification-of-cannabis-sex-drugs-and-enantiadromia/
http://www.zaporacle.com/deification-demonization-plant-me…/ Since I live in Boulder and don't know any weed demonizers but do know quite a few weed deifiers who continually hype cannabis as a cure for everything---this post is meant more as a challenge to them. http://www.zaporacle.com/deification-demonization-plant-me…/
A new Zap Oracle card featuring an amazing photo by my friend, the visionary Dutch painter, Thijme Termaat http://www.zaporacle.com/card/journeying-2/
Following the Creative Muse
For those few people interested in the vicissitudes of the creative process, a volatile three month cycle for me reached a culmination yesterday and shifted decisively this morning. This personal account is an illustration or example of the the path of creativity I have developed and written about in The Path of the Numinous---Living and Working with the Creative Muse http://www.zaporacle.com/the-path-of-the-numinous-living-and-working-with-the-creative-muse/ (also available as a podcast and Youtube).
I just spent 3 hours and 15 minutes engrossed in a very productive revision/ writing session on my fantasy epic, Parallel Journeys (Chapter One and some notes on the history of this project: http://www.zaporacle.com/parallel-journeys-beta-test/), and this was a complete departure from what’s been going on recently.
For the last three months, my predawn writing sessions (see Predawn Window Zone http://www.zaporacle.com/predawn-window-zone/ for why I need to write predawn) have fluctuated unpredictably between Parallel Journeys and intense inner work/writing sessions. Both types of creative work involve almost continuous writing, especially the inner sessions which have been turned into a personal oracle, called the Coaxial Oracle which, as of yesterday, contained 101,294 words (over 500 pages) about two thirds of it written in the last three months.
Starting December 30th, the muse wouldn’t allow me even five minutes of Parallel Journeys work and every morning I was ineluctably pulled into inner work during writing sessions that had huge word counts but no public content.
For the last few days, despite daily downloads of new realizations and voluminous Coaxial Oracle writing, I felt that this inner work might be reaching a culmination and that I would be able to return to Parallel Journeys soon. But I also felt that this might be wishful thinking because although I realized that inner necessity, the muse, whatever you want to call it, demanded this other work predominate, I also had this guilty feeling of neglecting Parallel Journeys, and even got a concerned email from my editor, Austin (http://www.austiniredale.com/), who wondered why I hadn’t even commented on the edits he had sent in the first week of the new year.
Then on Thursday, traveling from Bronx to Boulder via two subways, two airplanes and two buses (the liminal zone of traveling between two such polarized places always magical for me), I had some culminating insights that also took the form of a new chaos magic practice (see Two Chaos Magic Practices http://www.zaporacle.com/two-chaos-magic-practices-to-enhance-life/ for a brief definition) and a new form of an imaginal object (used in the practices) which I began working on in the Eighties.
On Friday morning I had a powerful dream that added to the culminating insights. I worked with the dream and then polished and refined the insights, magical practices and imaginal object on Friday morning and spent the day applying what I had learned and created.
I could feel the inner tectonic plates shift as three months of work resulted in culminating insights and a new magical technology (an inner practice involving the imaginal object) that was immediately effective.
And then this morning, this predawn writing session, I found that the tide had turned and the irresistible gravitational force pulling me, day after day into the inner/ Coaxial Oracle work was gone and replaced by a wide open portal into Parallel Journeys.
And once I started revising I noticed something else. Instead of feeling rusty, my fiction writing/revision skills seemed enhanced by the time away. Rereading a part that I thought of as finished work, I found ways to improve most of it and wrote a whole new section.
Austin’s edits, which had been gathering dust in my hard drive for two and a half weeks, proved to be invaluable and incisively accurate. They perfectly accorded with my stated intention to make the writing more cinematic and present tense. As I hoped, all the acting work Austin had been doing for the last few years had enhanced his editing skills and in the same direction of cinematic immediacy that I’ve been aiming at.
A few days ago in New York, my friend Michael said something that had been replaying in my mind. I repeated my spiel about having way more than 10,000 hours in with nonfiction writing but not with fiction and he dismissed that as not as major as I was making it out to be, “Yeah but if you have been working for decades in the arts, then you bring all of that to bear on whatever medium you adopt.”
Just as Austin’s acting career enhanced his editing skills, working in any art form can enhance what you bring to other art forms.
A brief Parallel Journeys phase in 1996 was interrupted by an immense gravitational pull into collage and decoupage work, an unexpected and highly unwelcome call that occurred right in the midst of a Parallel Journeys session and which I tried mightily to resist, but couldn’t. (I wrote about this in The Path of the Numinous).
The immersion into handcrafted visual art went on for a few years, and when I emerged from it I found that my writing was more aesthetic and visual. The artwork phase was right brained, guided by feelings, intuitions and visual ideas and when I resumed work in the medium of writing all that came with me.
The last three months of inner work was a realigning of my whole being and that realignment applies to my fiction writing and allowed progress to occur during the time I was compelled toward other sorts of writing.
But I don’t want to indulge in too much self-congratulation because I also sense that progress will stall immediately if I neglect the new inner practices and physical disciplines. I need to walk the talk the whole day for the next predawn writing session to be a portal. Also, no matter what I do today, I am not in control of the creative process and I can’t be sure what tomorrow will bring till I get there.