Charles Clanton Rogers

Reflections based on poetry, music, visual art, book reviews, history of science, first-person history, philosophical essays and International Blogging


“He who would learn to fly one day must first learn to stand and walk and run and climb and dance; one cannot fly into flying.” Friedrich Nietzsche

“You should only write if it is not possible for you NOT to write! -“ Elizabeth Hope Jackson – my English Teacher

“Think digging ditches is hard? At least you know when you are done. Think erecting a skyscraper is hard? At least what you have when you are finished is an unequivocally completed project. Think flipping burgers at the fast food restaurant in the strip mall of the nowhere town in which you live sucks? At least you get a paycheck.

Writing is thankless work. It is like housework. It is like laundry. It is like a soap opera. It is never finished. There is always more to do. People may tell you that you are good, but you won’t believe them, or you will believe them too much, or you will not know who to believe, least of all yourself and this thing you created that is nothing more than a mess of letters trying to make sense of things that don’t: life, death, what happens in between.”   Susannah Breslin

I had an Epiphany.

Writers, metaphorically, need to fly in their life.

We want the panoramic view of LIFE. We demand to see everything.

We want to see behind every facade; to tear back the curtain of “The Wizard”. 

To fly we must first learn to stand,

Then walk.

Then run and climb,

Then dance

Finally: flying!

“One cannot fly into flying.”

My epiphany tells me that these are the stages of becoming a writer.

Great writers are flying.

I would say I am at the walking phase, aspiring to “the dance” now with elementary dancing lessons.

Where are you?

Please do not just turn the page!  Make this a thread. Please give us your thoughts in the comments section.

Thank you for “Flying Zebra”!    If you liked this post, consider hitting my reblog button or Share on FB.

Charles Clanton Rogers  August 31, 2015

11 thoughts on “Blogger’s GPS August 31, 2015 – What Drives a Writer?

  1. bbnewsab says:

    Humanity has come a long way in its efforts to gain mastery of language.

    It all, probably, once started by making warning sounds/calls – in order to protect the family or group, and thereby increase its possibilities to survive by escaping deadly dangers.

    Then there is another track we can follow and investigate in the evolution and history of language. the formation of phonems (sounds) aka onomatopoeia.

    Now suddenly the warning calls could be more specific.

    Both brain hemispheres were used in the production and processing of language. The right brain dominated the processing of rhythms, pitches and tones (cf. music, cf. songs). The left half of our brains specialized in what we today call speech and, as a consequence thereof, how to understand more nuances in the uttered sounds and warnings calls.

    Still today there are wordless languages to be found, see for instance this article that landed in my mailbox less than two weeks ago:

    I believe that at least you, Karl, interested in evolution as I know you are, will find that article interesting.

    BTW, have you heard of the bouba/kiki effect?

    That effect gives us even more clues to how language, speech and writing might have developed. Have a look at: .

    But now a big “quantum jump” to today’s speech, writing and language.

    Language seems to lack an end destination. Instead it’s like Universe itself, expanding all the time. Så humanity’s efforts to gain mastery of language has made (clearly seen) progress since the coarse and staggering start when CHLCA, the chimpanzee–human last common ancestor, roamed the African continent, say, 4-10 million years ago. For details, see for instance: .

    Today we even know how to use the words in our language metaphorically. Here is one such metaphor: Using and mastering language is a two-edged “gift”. A gift that contains both carrots and whips. (The carrots are to be eaten, the whips are intended for self-flagellation and other self-esteem destructive activities.)

    On the other hand, failure can be seen as the condiment that gives success its flavor.So don’t be afraid of trying to gain mastery (not only in processing words into sentences).

    Or to paraphrase Nietzsche or your own thoughts about writing. It’s not easy to write something that is worth reading not only by yourself (later on) but also by others (maybe complete strangers).

    But you have reached that level, Karl! You can write what is worth reading. That means you must have understood the difference between good writing and bad.

    And that is a good start, believe me. Many writers to be stumble before reaching that insight.

    In fact you are nowadays testing your wings to see if you are able to fly up in the air/sky togehther with your chosen words.

    I dare say to you, Karl, Yes, you are (able to do that, too). When I look at you, I see a full-fledged test pilot flying, trying to make loops and other skilful “tricks”.

    Remember the other day when you and I discussed Jonathan Livingston Seagull?

    Both Jonathan and you have, by now, developed your skills into the borders of mastery.

    But at the same time, don’t forget that in searching for mastery of the words you’ll never become perfect. Notwithstanding you should try to hide the whip and instead reach/search for the carrots.

    Why? Because you deserve it, Karl”

    Sometimes you’ll feel despair in your brain because such are the rules of the “game”.

    But I urge you, Never give up hope! Never!

    The greatest pleasure of writing is not finding the right words. it’s more about finding the inner music that words can make.

    When you’ve reached that valuable insight, you are also near entering the famous and desirable state of flow, in this case caused by your absorption into your writing efforts.

    You belong there, Karl! You deserve to feel that kind of writer’s flow.

    BTW, your latest blog post reminds me of what Truman Capote once said, “Writing has laws of perspective, of light and shade just as painting does, or music. If you are born knowing them, fine. If not, learn them. Then rearrange the rules to suit yourself.”

    I would like to add: You seem to be born with those talents, Karl. And by the learning by doing method you so resolutely and purposefully use I bet you soon can repeat what Horace once wrote in his third book of Odes.

    He wrote therein: “Exegi monumentum aere perennius.” (“I have made a monument more lasting than bronze.”)

    Having his own poetry in view, Horace meant that his name (and poetry) would outlive any man made bronze monument. (He was right.)

    And be sure that also your memoir like blog posts will outlive you, Karl. They will make your children, grandchildren (and so on) delighted – and thankful – for you taking your time to clothe your thoughts in words.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. clanton1934 says:

    Dear bbnewsab, I will require a long time to absorb your scholarly and admirable treatise on the evolution of human communication. Regarding pre-human communication, our reader should see our recent reblog of Laura Grace Weldon on animals. Citing Horace in antiquity and Truman Capote as representative of modern writers is, I agree, appropriately representative. Anne Dillard and Ernest Hemingway, among others, point out that writing is a craft that one can study, polish and then only attempt
    to perfect until one can no longer hold a pen. I only hope that, one day, I might improve to deserve your very kind words. ccr

    Liked by 1 person

  3. bbnewsab says:

    Please, Karl, don’t underestimate yourself or your talents.

    Use your whip less often (but don’t throw it away or put it in the dustbin because it IS needed, sometimes).

    Anyhow, what’s wrong with carrots?

    I mean, as a complement to all the meat you (we) eat.

    Just remember to cook your food first, both meat and carrots.

    Cf. Richard Wrangham and his book “Catching Fire: How Cooking Made Us Human); see .

    After all, Kung Karl, you’re a man of good taste!

    Don’t ever forget that!


  4. bbnewsab says:

    Came to think of an interesting thing. In the Swedish Royal Academy, whose members are special protectors of “les Beaux Arts” and also are given the honor to select the authors who are to be awarded the Nobel Literature Prize, unusually many physicians have taken a seat.

    I can see a connection there. Physicians are normally well educated, they usually show a wide reading of both novels and nonfiction literature, they are interested in philosophical and escatological questions, they often muse on (what is) life, (what is) death, (what is) love, (what is) awe, (what is) the meaning of life and so on.

    That’s why they are no commonplace persons. Instead they are worth to be listened to.

    So it comes as no surprise to me that you, Kung Karl, runs an unusually interesting blog, and are so good at writing and expressing your thoughts on both small and big matters.

    In short, you’re really worth being listened to. You’ve got both knowledge and wisdom!

    And by these words “whispered” in your ear, I now say Good night to you, and all your readers, from Sweden


  5. Janice Wald says:

    Hi Charles!
    1. I am linking to this post in tomorrow’s Best Links of the Week Thursday Weekly Roundup. Yay! Thanks for the link submission.
    2. Guess what? Your atheist friend bbnewsab followed my blog! Isn’t that cool?! I am making connections because of you, too.
    We help each other. You have been a friend to me.
    Thank you,

    Liked by 1 person

    1. clanton1934 says:

      Terrific! “One hand washes the other!” Thank you so much. (You might enjoy my review of “geisha” being published at 01:00 EDT 9/10/15
      Your Blogging Buddie, c

      Liked by 1 person

    1. clanton1934 says:

      In just a couple of hours, your kind words has given 5 new followers. Now that’s remarkable, Janice!c

      Liked by 1 person

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