The Demon

The room is empty and I feel like there is someone watching me. It is 9 A.M. and the sun pours in though the open window of my office as I sit at the computer watching the colorful animated bubbles of the screensaver dart around aimlessly. I turn back and look out the window across the drive to my elderly neighbor who is diligently watering her fern garden again. Is she looking at me? Impossible. The child inside me tells me to slide open the closet door, and though I don't believe there is anyone there, I look anyway. Jackets, binders containing stashed away writings and old forgotten Halloween costumes, but nothing else.

 It has been almost a month since the second draft of my novel has been complete and I have double edited 99 pages of it so far. I am mourning the writing of story and hating the editing of it. I have no plans today to edit and I have a nagging guilt about that. With no realization of doing so I open the Word document containing my manuscript and I find myself staring without focus at page 100. I can't see the words clearly and they begin change shape before my zombie like gaze."You could start the new book. I know you want to." said a raspy voice projecting itself directly into my brain.

I can't move as the written word on the screen begins to shift and the words form a face with sinister blank white eyes staring through me. 

"NO. I have to edit." I scream at the monitor as if it were alive.

"Did God edit his creations? I think not. Start the new novel, no one will know."

"I'll know. I have to see this to the end."

"Who are you writing for? People don't deserve your work. We should keep on writing and not worry about edits or formats. These things are not important."

"Fuck you. Leave me alone. I need to edit so I can get my story polished."

"Your story is shit. You know that in your heart. Lets scrap it and write a new story. Oh, the rush of adventure. You know you want it. Just let go, it is fine. It's all fine."

"You don't control me you bastard." I say and press the power button on my monitor and the screen goes black.

"We will see." came a whisper from behind the wall. 

How My Novel Was Killing Me

I'll keep this short, but I wanted to mention how writing has recently changed my life for the better. I am a smoker and I realized that when I was working on my manuscript I was smoking 5 times as much as when I wasn't writing. Writing was slowly killing me and I wanted to hang around a little longer.

My bank account was draining and my lung capacity was shrinking so rather than giving up on writing or giving up on my routines I switched to a tobacco free alternative of a vaporizer pen. It's been over a month now and I haven't even thought about a traditional tar filled cancer stick. I love to smoke and now I have a healthier alternative. If you smoke and write, maybe you should consider this. I'm not preaching, just saying.


The Loss Of Character

So I am in the editing stage of my manuscript and I came to the horrible realization that I will need to cut three chapters from the book. This will in essence undo two characters that I had grow to love in the story. They are ultimately unnecessary and bring the story to a halt.

When I wrote the first draft online I cut a major character, but she was honestly not important to the story and her role was absorbed into another character, so no great loss. For any who have not read the online draft (Available warts and all for a limited time here) The story involves a female serial killer that may or may not be from another world. I did an enormous amount of research involving the FBI. In the manuscript I had two FBI agents who had been uprooted from their homes and shipped off to a small town to work on the case. They were interesting characters but I found that their perspective slowed down the story and seemed out of place. It was hard to let them go because I worked so hard to make them believable.

In books you read/write are there any characters you think served no real purpose? I will mourn them for now, but may have to resurrect them in one of the later books of the series.


The Writers of Google+

   I've recently been making my presence known on Google+ within the writing community there. I am truly enjoying the experience and am happy to see less snobbery than was my previous experience with other literary types offline.

    There is a lot of information out there and they are very supportive of one another. There are several new or unsure writers who are gaining much from their interactions with professionals. Writing is lonely and the process takes up much of a writer's mind. I have had some interactions where the writer is so caught up in their heads that reality has become twisted for them. If there is anything I have learned from my time online is that I refuse to be tortured by what I love. I've listed things I've learned from Google+ so far on what I don't want to do.

Obsess over word count

Sound like a know it all

Be a tortured artist

Half read a comment and then sound like an idiot

Ask unique questions

Use +1 rather than repeating a comment.

Well that's my short list. I encourage any artist that has not done so already to join a community on Google plus.


The Creative Mind aka Crazy Brains

I am laying in bed a few years back trying to sleep and my wife can tell I'm still awake because I'm not snoring like a jet engine as per usual. "Why can't you sleep, boo boo?" She says as I reveal to the blog readers that I am also known as boo boo.

"Brain movies." I say simply.

"Brain Movies?"

"Yeah they are very weird tonight and I can't stop watching."

"Just stop thinking about it."

"I'm not thinking, I'm just watching and it's keeping me up."

"I don't know what your talking about. What the hell is a brain movie?"

"You know swirling changing images on the backs of your eyelids when you close your eyes."

"Are you sure your not having a brain embolism?"

"What, you don't have brain movies?"

"No, I don't think that's a thing boo. Tell me what you're seeing now."

"There is an elephant and his trunk is gone now he turned into a shark and then a flower that is purple now there is a skyscraper and its filled with green lava and the sky is furry like grass and"

"are you on some kind of drugs?"

"No. Just brain movies. You sure you don't see anything when you close your eyes?"

"Just blackness. I think about things, but I don't see images. Are you sure you're okay?"

   I thought this was the way that everyone was until she pointed out that I have crazy brains. Every time it's quiet and I close my eyes I am immersed in a vibrant world of violently changing images. I've talked to some people and they look at me like I'm crazy, but my tattoo artist when probed said that this was how his brain worked as well. So my question is this an artist thing? Do artists all have a swirl of imagery in their minds that is visible when they close their eyes? 


Damn My Brand


    Back before the internet I used to write articles about tropical fish and made some money doing so. I used to love to see my name in print more than the meager paycheck and I kept a little scrap book with my published work in it. At the same time that my nonfiction was getting published I was also writing poetry and getting it published in poetry magazines.

    What I just realized this last week is that every time I change a genre I have changed my name. When doing non-fiction I was Robert Bergner and when doing poetry I would do so as Robin Paris. Did I somehow make little brands for myself without thinking about it? Did I have a need to keep my poetry life secret from my nonfiction? When I wrote my two children's books I did so under the name Bobby Bergner and now that I am working on a Horror/Fantasy novel I had decided to go with RL Bergner. The last two mentioned were intentional due to the vastly different subject matter. I would hate for my self illustrated kitty poo book to be sitting next to my dark novel because of the shared name.

    So even in the early days of my career I was all about branding and didn't even realize it. I guess it is important and so I thought I would bring up my personal experience with it. Still one day I would like to see the world where this would be okay:

    From the mind that brought you into the exciting world of Chemoautotrophic Bacteria, Tortured Dreams of a Poet, Why Kitty Is Afraid Of Poo, The terrifying Dead Stir and Intentionally Terrible Paintings of Bunnies comes the new epic sheep herding field guide, Perdy Herdy!

    Point of this is I think it may be important to think about your brand especially when using social media to promote yourself.