∆ Zadie Smith | Novelist, Essayist, Short Story Writer, Editor…
Zadie Smith’s 10 Rules of Writing
- When still a child, make sure you read a lot of books. Spend more time doing this than anything else.
- When an adult, try to read your own work as a stranger would read it, or even better, as an enemy would.
- Don’t romanticise your ‘vocation’. You can either write good sentences or you can’t. There is no ‘writer’s lifestyle’. All that matters is what you leave on the page.
- Avoid your weaknesses. But do this without telling yourself that the things you can’t do aren’t worth doing. Don’t mask self-doubt with contempt.
- Leave a decent space of time between writing something and editing it.
- Avoid cliques, gangs, groups. The presence of a crowd won’t make your writing any better than it is.
- Work on a computer that is disconnected from the internet.
- Protect the time and space in which you write. Keep everybody away from it, even the people who are most important to you.
- Don’t confuse honours with achievement.
- Tell the truth through whichever veil comes to hand — but tell it. Resign yourself to the lifelong sadness that comes from never being satisfied.
Sometimes, I write what I think, a bit of what’s going on over at Post Huxtable Theory.
To: All Nostalgians
From: A Hybrid Chic
“…constant evolution causes expansion”
(Lewis, “Evolution” Black Cool: One Thousand Streams ofBlackness 130).
Here lies a brief assertion, which deconstructs a thought I have had over a year, on the crippling effects nostalgians can have on the creative culture—when they are afraid of the future. It is with great hope that you will read the following words and evolve courageously, so that our world may expand with the most peculiar and brilliant minds that our culture has ever known.
The Post Neo-Romantics:
Who’s Afraid of the Future?
March 31, 2013
For the past six years, the U.S. has shifted in what many deem a downward motion of economic and social uncertainties, and the view of the good ole days can seem so much brighter. Just as nostalgia was utilized as a trope in Neo-Romanticism, so has it reappeared—remixed—in a Postmodern utopian cultural landscape of the Post Neo-Romantics. As we wrestle with the prefixes ‘post,’ and ‘neo,’ we question ourselves, and therefore deconstruct the notions of newness and originality. How can anything old become new again—without it being just redundant? The simple answer: change the mentality behind the question.
Post Neo-romantics are too in love with the past, yet critical of tradition and uncertain of the future. Ironically, a large population of the inhabitants of this utopian cultural landscape, are mental wanderlusters: people who were not born in a certain decade, in which they culturally identify with, yet they have mentally travelled to that specific space in time, and adopted the cultural, not social, characteristics of decades past—as if it were present day—so, they are unable to connect to present culture, nor add to future culture.
Being too nostalgic can cripple creativity as a thinker is solely stuck at looking only at the past. Yet, if the creative takes inspiration from his/her heroes’ works, eras, cultural concepts, etc., and studies and analyzes it, then add their personal touch to it—innovation ultimately occurs.
I have written this brief memo as a starting point: to cease imitation, which is caused by fear, and to create innovation.
“There is no creativity and innovation without failure.”- dr. brené brown
Cliché as it may be, change is inevitable; nothing stays the same, so you might as well suit up and go for the ride—of course, with plan a, b + c in hand—then again, those plans may require plan d.
Innovation Is Queen
Call it the new Feminist Theory, or just what it is—if “the idea is king,” innovation is queen (Katzenberg, 1991). Sitting on a throne all her own, she is an analytic problem solver, quick witted, charismatic and even ideas are strategically protected by her. Although there are a lot of oppositions to ideas, there is no limit to her innovative moves—don’t give up, victory is a process that sometimes, takes us off course.
pre-order volume II of neonV ”the magazine for the contemporary peculiar woman,” to read this article in its entirety and more, here.
Photo: *Edited version via @stopbeingfamous
Peculiar Women getting DOWN!
I love how Santigold and Wangechi Mutubreaks down the continuum of our cultural shift. I am an adamant believer in the notion that there will be this “explosive renewal after the consumption of everything.” As a theorist and analyst of the shifts within the continuum of African American/Black American culture, mainly within the realm of the creative sector, I am eager to see what fills some of the empty holes in the arts and society in general.
The artistic cultural production is certainly seeing a shift as more artists are taking from the past or utilizing rudimentary materials and found objects. Yes, assemblage has been around, but the mind-frame surrounding the usage of found objects is very different. It speaks to a sense of doing more with ones hands as well as mastering various forms of tradition while re-imagining its use in contemporaneity when consumption is at an all time high. It is not born out of having little, but out of having an array of materials/information and yet critically deciding what information is important enough to stay within the cultural landscape being created. A coded language occurs between the assemblages of consumption and curation.
I myself fall into this shift with the work I am currently producing, more on my new work sooner than later. An artist who questions and seeks to answer his/her questions can come off a bit peculiar during the process. So, I’ll just be still for a bit…haha.
∆ Wangechi Mutu | Collagist, Afrofuturist, Warrior Woman
∆ Photographer | Chris Sanders [pic 1]
what happens when creative director and hybrid chic @tanekeyaword, collaborates with the amazing u.k. papercut artist, @loutaylor? you will have to pre-order volume II of neonV to fully indulge in this fantasy. trust us, you want to curl up with this magazine: in a park, on a beach, or in wonderland with a glass of iced tea.
pre-order your limited edition copy now
-I: tanekeya word
creative + art director
& literature + culture editor
live in neon.
The first day the Quarterly Co. x Pharrell Williams announcement was made—I subscribed. Having been a fan of Quarterly for a very long time, their model is flat out genius and my purpose is to bridge tradition and innovation in everything that I do, so naturally I gravitate to others who authentically do the same.
If you haven’t checked out this no brainer collaboration do yourself a favor and get on board. While you are there, check out the other tastemakers, cultural initiators and cultural producers as it’s so hard not to subscribe to all of them—especially if you’re curious and have an intense hunger for knowledge. I have my eye on two more subscriptions: art, books and design rules everything around me.