Dissection of a Misanthrope

The Writing Diary of M Brace DeFreak

Flesh-Eating Maenads

Maenads were the orgiastic followers of Dionysus. The wild women tore various forms of wildlife apart and one unlucky man (Pentheus). Plausibility exists within this myth because crazy people can show crazy amounts of strength and cannibalistic tendencies. Wine by itself does not provoke this effect, but a combination of factors may do the trick.

My novel entails a drug frenzy, but never strictly follows this myth. I may consider Maenad-like characters for the next book. Donna Tartt uses Maenad mythology in her novel, The Secret History, but I’m surprised by the lack of use in film. Wikipedia lists a few films on their page for The Bacchae.

Images from Wikimedia:
Description: Maenads A detail view of two Maenad figures, part of the Rites of Dionysus, an installation sculpture by Tim Shaw, within the Hot,Dry Biome.
Date: 27 March 2006
Source: From
Author: Phil Williams
Camera location: 50° 21′ 38.61″ N, 4° 44′ 34.61″ W
Description: Pentheus being torn by maenads. Roman fresco from the northern wall of the triclinium in the Casa dei Vettii (VI 15,1) in Pompeii.
Deutsch: Pentheus wird von Mänaden zerrissen. Römisches Fresko von der Nordwand des Tricliniums in der Casa dei Vettii (VI 15,1) in Pompeji.
Date 13 March 2009
Source Marisa Ranieri Panetta (ed.): Pompeji. Geschichte, Kunst und Leben in der versunkenen Stadt. Belser, Stuttgart 2005, ISBN 3-7630-2266-X, p. 366
Author WolfgangRieger

The Freakish Desire To Freak

Many people desire a deviation from the norm and my fictional fertility cult relies on such people. I use the SuicideGirls logo because they also represent such people. Tattoos and piercings are commonplace, nowadays, but some take these practices to further extreme. Tattooed ladies were sideshow novelties, but the SuicideGirls prove some things never change.

If genetic splicing allows people to have tails, many women will grow a tail because women love accessories. Men will have tails, too, but I wager women will have more.

The Road To A Barony

A pretty face goes a long way. Peggy O’Neal Timberlake Eaton caused a ruckus in Washington when wives of Cabinet members started gossiping about her–historians nicknamed this incident the–Petticoat Affair; which led to John Henry Eaton, Peggy’s second husband, becoming Governor of Florida Territory; and afterward, becoming the U.S. Minister to Spain; which led to a third husband and another scandal; she married a much younger man who later ran off with her money and a granddaughter who he later married.

How does this relate to the Baroness? Olga de Meyer is Peggy’s great-granddaughter and the events above led to a European connection. My interest involves the lesbians of Les Ruches with whom the Baroness had relations. Peggy Eaton and the Baroness are members of my fictional cult.


Images from Wikipedia have the following credits:
Description: Olga, Baroness de Meyer
Date 1907
Author John Singer Sargent († 1925)
Description: Olga, Baroness de Meyer
Date 1907
Author John Singer Sargent († 1925)
Description: Old Cigar box lid depicting Margaret O’neal who became the wife of the Secretary of the Navy under Andrew Jackson.
On the left we can see the President Jackson offering flowers to Margaret O’neal after the scandal with the Washington wives. On the right picture, we can see her husband during a duel with a man who insulted her.
The original size of this Old Cigar box is about 6 inches by 10 inches
Français : Illustration d’une vieille boîte de cigares : portrait de Margaret O’Neal, qui fut la femme du sénateur John Eaton, et qui fut au cœur du scandale Petticoat.
Sur l’illustration de gauche, on voit le Président Jackson lui offrir des fleurs après que le scandale a éclaté et qu’elle a été l’objet de la haine des épouses des autres sénateurs. Sur l’image de droite, on peut voir son mari tuant un homme durant un duel provoqué par des insultes proférées à l’encontre de Margaret O’Neal.
La taille original de la boîte de cigares était d’environ 15 cm par 25 cm
Date 15 September 2011
Source Cigar box
Author Unknownwikidata:Q4233718

Edith Bunker the wise fool

We have too many Bunker-heads and Meatheads, if you’ve seen the TV series, All In The Family, you understand the reference. The extremism in society presses the people, in the middle. I finally had a day without depression that allowed me to send out queries to literary agents, but that sent me into a world of extreme liberalism. Extreme conservatives drive me nuts, too, but I’m fed up with White Elitist meatheads.

I spent many years, in the manufacturing industry, and it is depressing to see no matter how hard you work—you job can get shipped overseas. I understand and sympathize with immigrants who want a chance, but I’ve been placed into the wringer myself and no one is more native to Florida than me unless they are related to me; even the Seminoles are foreign invaders compared to me. The liberals seem to want me displaced. Immigrants have somewhere else to go, I have no other affiliation with another country and I feel alienated.

I get attacked for being a White Native American in Florida and this dumb retarded nuke is struggling to control the anxiety and rage of today’s society. Almost all the literary agents I researched on twitter were extreme liberal meatheads. Get off my land, I’m native to Florida and you are not I’m sick of being attacked and I’m most likely much more dangerous than you. The point I make with the title was that Edith was in the middle and she defended one against the other. Archie and Meathead were often wrong in different ways.

I wrote this post a long time ago, and I just decided to post it.

Did Natalie Clifford Barney bed Mata Hari?

Natalie Clifford Barney bedded many women and Mata Hari performed at Barney’s salon, so It’s conceivable. Both play a role, in my novel, because they fit the profile of my fictional cult members. I mind mapped several of Barney’s conquests and may share the map, one day.


Description: Portrait studio photograph of Natalie Clifford Barney and Renée Vivien in Directoire-era costume
Date: ca. 1900
Author: Otto Studio
Description: Mata Hari
Date 1906
Author Unknownwikidata:Q4233718

If anyone wants a writing challenge try writing without modals

I’m trying to weed out the modals in my novel. Reducing my use of the word ‘should’ took several hours and that was my easy one, Three other modals ‘will, ‘can’, ‘and may’ will be much harder. I can’t imagine writing a story without any. My novel is dialogue heavy, and we speak with modals, so I aim for a slight reduction. If anyone wants a writing challenge, I suggest a 2000 word short story with modals.

Can I fix my modal problem?


Modals are helping verbs and it’s best for the verb, not to need help. Three words atop my word frequency list are modals– can, may, and should. I also need to count how many times I use ‘have to’. My percentage is acceptable, but just barely The Expresso App measures me at 5%. This may be the most useful function in the Expresso app, for me. 3% would be preferable, but I’m not sure if I’ll manage that amount.

These are examples of modals: ‘Can and could’; ‘May and might’; ‘Shall and should’; ‘Will and would’; ‘Must and have to’; ‘Ought to and had better’; ‘Dare and need’; ‘Used to’; and be ‘able to’

The image above shows my Expresso grade in comparison to James Joyce;s Ulysses and what stands out is the modal percentage. I earned a better grade for strong verbs and most everything else is roughly the same. The clustered noun score is tricky, so I ignore our difference there. James has a better score for nominations, but my percentage is fine. The entity substitution refers mostly to pronouns and that;s an easy fix and I’ll probably drop it to 25%.

My modals looked less problematic in my two other samples and I suspect I average less than 4% but I’ll try to reduce the percentage to 3%

Me versus Ulysses

Switch out the pronouns and my word pattern starts looking eerily similar to James Joyce. The Gunning Fogg Index shows our readability rating, nearly matches. His lexical density is tough to beat, but I’m certainly above average. Joyce used more passive verbs, the practice is frown upon now, so I’m theoretically the better writer, in that regard.

I’ve used the app which tells you which writer you resemble and this novel resembles James Joyce’s style. He writes about Dublin; I write about Florida, and we both use a boatload of allusions. I’ve written a theoretical masterpiece and few will ever read it.

An alternate reality rather than a Roman à clef

My use of trivia creates questions of legality. I prefer an alternate reality approach, but the name changes of a Roman à clef may be safer. In an alternate reality, my fictional cult exists and sexuality is more permissive and Paris Hilton would have needed to hum two guys, at the same time, to rise above the ho-hum of the normal new cycle.

Dujana Barnes’ wrote the classic Roman à clef, Nightwood. Barnes uses an alias for Natalie Barney, in Nightwood. The novel is an early classic in lesbian literature and one of my lines about Naiad Press purred this post. I’m into Florida trivia, but I often steer clear of political correctness. Naiad Press publishes correspondences with Dorothy Allison who founded the Lesbian Sex Mafia, so I’m not sure how out of line my line really is.

Les Ruches, the school which Natalie Barney attended plays a role in my novel, and I make use of coincidences to form a conspiracy led by my cult. Are there elements of truth–Yes, but the conspiracy and the cult is fictional.

One poll I studied shows one out three of lesbians dabbles with BDSM, in my hypersexual version, the ratio would become two out of three. If the Maenads of ancient Greece endured until contemporary times, hypersexuality would be the norm.


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