Some Tangles Give Me Wood


Nymphs truly are in tune to the wood. Many come with berry tops, like Batman’s Poison Ivy (left). It almost seems wrong to picture them in any other way. Poison Ivy often partners with Harley Quinn, the Harlequin; did DC Comics borrow this idea from, John_Reinhard Weguelin’s, 1905 artwork, The Magic of Pan’s Flute (right). Pan like Harley Quinn is a trickster. Maybe they chose Poison Ivy’s, hair color, due to Robert Henri’s painting, Edna Smith in a Japanese Wrap; I don’t know but I do know why I used the painting as the cover for Nathaniel Hawthorne’s Tanglewood Tales. The answer to this “why,” is that Poison Ivy stems from the tale, Rappaccini’s Daughter. Dryads and nymphs from mythology also played a part, but the poisonous kiss comes by way of Hawthorne’s’ retelling of a Robert Burton tale in The Anatomy of Melancholy, which came from the tale, Gesta Romanorum, which came from India’s Mudrarakshasa. Art often intertwines with history and other works of art. The practice of conditioning oneself to poison probably began with a shaman lost in history.

Pan and the very similar, Puck, most likely gave some inspiration to the Joker and Harley Quinn, but Victor Hugo’s, The Man Who Laughed, is an acknowledged source of inspiration.

The making of this post has helped me refine some physical characteristics of two of my characters. I also allude to Hawthorne, the author, in my book. Hawthorn, the plant, also has a role due to its thorny nature, as member of the Rosaceae family.


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Lies in the Truth


All books contain fiction. Writers, like all people, have bias. I enjoyed Team of Rivals, but I noticed Goodwin did not show much criticism. Show me her in-depth analysis about Lincoln signing off on the Scorched Earth Policy; show me where she mentions it. You may call it a sin of omission, but it does evade a truth. Matthiessen does not claim to know the truth in Shadow Country; he shows multiple perspectives about a historical incident. Many Historical fiction authors do vast amounts of research, but they can leave out hard to understand quotes. Language changes over time and Non-Fiction authors use hard to interpret source material. Some say Shakespeare did not write Shakespeare; history often hides the truth. Popular history tends to differ from accurate history.

Fiction writers use creative license to make a better story. A true historian does not get the luxury. Anything more than a century old will have holes and the Historical Fiction writer admits to filling in holes. Non-Fiction writers may just try to hide their tracks. The Scorched Earth Policy helped win the war, but it holds controversy and is ripe for condemnation. Before you blow off Historical Fiction; face some facts about Non- Fiction.

Being Prometheus Bound


In myth, Prometheus gave humans fire. He set fire to the mind; we call this gift enlightenment. In myth, Phosphorus is the light bringer and his name has been given to an element that lights up when exposed to air. Like Prometheus, phosphorus gives us fire; it is essential to life. You often find phosphorous bound to rock; it can’t live free because it combusts when naked to air. You see phosphorus in DNA, carbon is its rock. DNA chains us to our ancestors and their dust is a rock.

Mary Shelley authored Frankenstein: or, The Modern Prometheus. Shelley wrote her novel before the discovery of DNA, but she still knew about the chains to our ancestors. Like the monster, we come from the parts of many; mom and dad are just the last two. Mary used the Prometheus myth in her book, but she is bound to Prometheus in another way. Percy Shelley translated Prometheus Bound and wrote Prometheus Unbound.

I write this because phosphorus plays a role in my book and Prometheus has some links to my book, as well.


Descent Into Lit


The writer’s journey may mirror the hero’s. I have mirrored Dante; I descended into a type of hell. A writer needs to study technique, but realize most techniques deal with generalities. Vogler’s plot structure matches up well with Freytag’s Pyramid and most can see their logic. They both plot tension. Do you limit yourself to one climax? I hope not. Many people choose books on the blurb you use to sum up your book; others go for the first page, others a random page, and a few go straight to the end. Multiple peaks give you better odds. A quick and early hit may not act as the climax, but a slow straight line needs a famous name or master craftsmanship to entice the reader. I use Dante in many ways; I doubt people can agree on his climax. I went for 6 to 9; it sounds like a recipe for a pair of climaxes. Sorry, when you write about a fertility cult your mind starts thinking in buns and puns. I colored up another Gustave Dore woodcut to go with the Gustav Freytag diagram.

Give a Toot


Snail mail blows, but give the Indians credit; they sure knew how to launch a conch. The 3rd pic depicts a Chasqui; an Incan pony express without the pony or the express. Hindu type Indians didn’t blow conch for their mail, but they do blow conchs religiously. My next post has more about conch blowing; this one relates more to horny mailmen.

Thomas Pynchon uses the post horn in, The Crying of Lot 49; a mailman’s tale turned into a paranoid beatnik tale about high tech. Pynchon interests me and I do relate in some ways, but I do have problems with him. I write this blog to help clarify my novel, but I hope people can get some enjoyment without understanding everything. I’m not sure if Pynchon cares. I try to learn from Pynchon and James Joyce because they made ambitious novels; I wrote one, too. Pynchon writes about systems The mail is a system and Pynchon’s horn represents a simple system. Look at a French horn and you will see a much more complex system with valves changing resonance values. Pynchon adds a mute to his horn; I think it represents defeating the system. For every action there is a reaction; for every cause there is a rebel.

(Center Image) Francis Barraud’s original painting of Nipper looking into an Edison Bell cylinder phonograph. I put it in for cuteness and because it steps up from horns; which, stepped from the conch.

In Florida, we had the Barefoot Mailman. I note this because this blog also acts an outline for my final edit. I don’t think I have the barefoot mailman, but I think an easy allusion will get added.

Stuck in Style


How to fix? = Me no know = Do I want to?

I used a site which compares your writing to famous authors. I got Lewis Carroll. It makes sense because he writes nonsense at a children’s level. Most readers prefer less than a 6th grade reading level and I worked to get there. My allusions; which, I refuse to give up will look like Literary Nonsense to those without a key. White Rabbit makes sense.

Why write Florida version of the Irish, Finnegan’s Wake = I’m nuts

Good news = I’m not alone = Someone has worked on a Rock Opera.

You see Joseph Campbell wrote about it. I have read Campbell/Robinson’s book and others, but I can’t read the real thing. Few have read it.

I didn’t plan to write this style book. I didn’t plan to use Freaks, but read about Gibsonton and you will see why a person writing about Florida might consider using them. I planned to use Tricksters, but research showed why a Fertility Cult made sense. Disney’s Fantasia links to the Rite of Spring = Fertility of Flora = Walt Disney’s mother and Flora = Florida.

Do we control the material or does it control us? I envy people who stick to humor, poetry, or art. My book uses them all and my blog tracks my book. I’m stuck. I feel sorry when people follow my stuff and it appears to go off topic. I’m always on topic = my book. I compare modern history to the past, so trivia mixes with history. Florida history stems much from Eurasian and African history, so I jump from place to place and time to time. My nonsense makes sense.