A Sadist

Meet Nate Sawyer.

The perfect kid. That is no exaggeration. He really is. So perfect that it made you queasy with envy. The whole package; quite a remarkable specimen. Tall, dark haired, gorgeous, and a body like one of those on the front of a Men’s Health magazine designed to make you self-conscious of your meagre frame. His perfection manifested itself in every wake of life, believe it or not. He was the school jock. He placed in the top three academic performers in the grade. Worst of all? He was insufferably charming and polite. It was impossible to hate the kid, no matter how desperately you wish you did.

Perhaps if you knew more, knew what did…you may just find that hatred.

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A Mask

My name is Guy Garrison.

I am a nobody. Well, nobody I would like to be. Plain, plain as the cruel God above would have me be. Without any special talent. Absent of any remarkable ability. I am not the beating heart of any party. I bring not the light of the rising sun. I am simply here. Insufferably, obnoxiously, here.

I wake up. I accept the sin of life. I pretend for my family. I attend school. I socialise. The last bell rings. I return home. I rest. I wake up. A cycle. A hand on a clock. The notion of routine simply maddening.

There is only one aspect of my life that keeps me sane – if that is appropriate a word to use. It is the fact that I am insane. Surely that is paradoxical! Yet can one be aware of one’s own insanity? Can I know that I am probably – most definitely – mad? Or am I of some modicum of sane thought to examine the possibility that I may be…too sane? Hmm. Super sane.

My head is a cloud. The outside world is vast and senseless. My colleagues and classmates and teachers and friends are nought but an obligation to me. I want something more for myself, but I am not worthy of more. I am flesh. I am moving parts stripped of purpose. I am without identity.

I am only ever whole in the safe, quiet darkness of the night; through one single secret. My sweet, sweet secret, hidden in a pit.

In a man-made hole in my wall, buried beyond my belongings, is a mask.

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Don’t Hide Your Work From The World

I know a fair amount of writers. By that I don’t necessarily mean that these people write books, but they write. They’re a mix of journalists, passionate writers, bloggers, novelists and editors. It doesn’t really matter what the objective is. They’re writers. It’s as simple as that.

One of the most common problems I’ve found among said writers is a vice that to some degree many of us have buried down somewhere. It’s the fear of having our work exposed, critiqued, ridiculed or torn down by an outside party. It’s the vulnerability we face by putting our writing out there and having its fate rest in the hands of its beholders. It’s the fear of what you do and love to do leaving the safety of your mind. It’s the fear of judgement day.

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The Use Of Profanity In Writing

Profanity is an interesting topic to me because of people’s vastly different reactions to it both in real life and literature. Some people cringe and can’t take swear words at all, others aren’t bothered by them in the slightest and some people consider them only to be effective when used in a good context. You even get those who feel profanity is a crutch for the inarticulate.

I don’t quite fall on any particular side in this debate because I’m totally an advocate for freedom in writing and creating art with as little rules as possible. But I do like to entertain all sides of the discussion.

My desire to talk about the topic arose recently when out of interest I checked the ‘fuck’ count in my upcoming book, The Black Glass Killer, and discovered that the word appeared a whopping 150 times in the novel so far, and that number can go up or down during the editing process.

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Crafting A Psychopath

In case you’re thinking it this isn’t actually my personal origin story. Insert Bane quote here about you merely adopting psychopathic tendencies while I was born with them. However I do have to take a few steps back to briefly mention that when I finally published my first book, The Sorrow, two years ago it was intended to be a deconstruction of a hero. I wanted to take a sort of clichéd premise and write something interesting with it.

While I’m happy with the result despite an average-ish opinion of it from me, numerous shortcomings and things I would absolutely do differently given a second chance (and that’s the beauty of writing), I always felt that my goal with my next book would be to better capture my own voice and identity as a writer, and ultimately differentiate myself.

That’s part of what attracted me to the idea of reversing core themes in my first book to create something darkly written – excuse the pun – and closer to the kind of thing people have expected of me over the years.

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Poem: Dark Light

I am extremely close to the next big progress update on my second book, which is absolutely on track to be completed this year. In the mean time I felt in the mood for some more abstract creative writing, and turned back to some of the poetry I used to write in High School.

I thought it would be pretty cool to share a slice of that poetry, even though it’s primitive and, well, teenage level.

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Dealing With Audience Oversensitivity As An Artist

In the world we live in today one of the greatest dangers facing artistic expression and creative freedom is often declared to be the oversensitivity of the audience, especially on the internet. Controversial material, whether through humour or graphic or television or writing, is constantly under threat of scrutiny often not for the actual quality of the art, but for whether it should be allowed to exist. In other words, whether it’s acceptable. This is a problem that all artists must face, and it’s especially important in a time where censorship is an always looming danger yet the volume of material is at an all time high and barriers to entry at a lovable low.

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