A blog is short for “web log,” an individually driven discussion forum available on the World Wide Web where nearly everyone in the cosmos can tune in to a yak farmer in Outer Mongolia to learn the craft of making yak butter, or to an Inuit hunter on the North Slope of Alaska to admire a sled maneuvering over sea ice. The word individual suggests that anyone can instigate a blog, for any reason, and hope to reach the eyes and minds of everyone out there in Computer Land. That’s just about everyone everywhere except the aboriginal tribes of the rain forests of the Amazon. Them we should leave alone. If you own or can borrow a computer and an Internet connection, you can communicate regularly with people you don’t know and don’t owe any money to. In democratic fashion, even with people to whom you do owe money.
This blog is named Ink Flare, a reminder that even the tiniest spark of light will dispel darkness. It is no longer pitch black when that light, whether by wisp of candle flame or glow of battery powered flashlight, projects a ray. Like any light bulb flaring in a dark cave, you can now see. Literally you can see the stalactites protruding from the cave ceiling and avoid getting stabbed in the head as you hike through narrow passages. Figuratively you open your mind to discoveries that you didn’t even know other folks were, well, discovering. The addition of the word ink suggests something to do with mark making, in this case, specifically words made in pursuit of writing stories. We’re not fussing here over whether they are truly written in ink on paper or on a new document page of a computer. Either will suffice. This blog will address issues that writers confront as we pursue our work and our passion.
My idea is that we are part of a team. Not one of those competitive athletic groups demanding that weekends and holidays be spent on a field, slugging baseballs. We are a team of like minded literary folks with assorted story interests, getting together whenever we darned well feel like it and pitching ideas. This isn’t Writing 101. If you’re at the very beginning of your writing education, you probably should take that course and a slew of others to learn the basics. It’s more like Walk-In Writing Clinic, open 24-7 for well baby writer’s check-ups. Make sure your writing temperature is about 98.6, your story pressure around 118 over 78.
During the first year of writing this blog I intend to address a range of topics that writers might consider as they labor on their tomes. I want to point out plot, character, language, and structure traps, provide solutions, and ease the task of completing a story. I hope to help you improve your skills as I do mine. I aim to build a supportive group of writers and thinkers to become an audience and a speakers’ panel that will provide worthy feedback on all topics.
I’ve left the light on for you. The door is always open, walk in any time. Just bring your own pen.