Tag Archives: #CharlesHash

…and the third great Guest Post offering from Author, Charles Hash… enjoy…

…little did I suspect when I opened my web page for my usual seasonal Guest Post invitations, that one contributor would delight with three superb pieces… I’ve enjoyed immensely each one of these jewels from my friend, Author, Charles Hash… here’s his third … enjoy…

Winter has embraced my tiny part of the world, and time often seems to stand still amidst the darkness and cold. While the last few leaves persistently cling to the branches as an indicator of the impending slumber of the season, I’m reminded of my childhood spent in the mountains. I was a lonely child with no brothers and no sisters, isolated away from the nearest neighboring children, but the three years I spent there were wonderful. One of my favorite activities in the fall was chopping wood for the stove, our only source of heat. I don’t know why I liked it so much, but I found myself getting lost in the rhythm, and within my thoughts. Chop, chop, chop. It was meditation in its purest form to me, and I wouldn’t trade it for anything in the world. It never seemed like hard work, because I enjoyed every bit of it. To this day, I miss chopping wood in the fall and through the winter.

Perseverance is not a long race; it is many short races one after the other.
-Walter Elliot

In many ways, chopping wood is a lot like writing a book. It can make your hands cramp, and your shoulders sore, and your head echo with the empty thump of a headache. It can seem endless, with another pile of wood waiting to be turned into kindling or stacked to dry. It becomes tedious and monotonous, overwhelming to some, but comforting to others. And I suspect, like writing, chopping wood is not as enjoyable now that I’m older. Some days I hate it. Everything has always come so effortlessly to me, but not writing. I’ve grown bored with most other pursuits that I’ve enjoyed, and while I’ve never mastered anything, I’ve molded myself into a Jack of All Trades. But writing…is an elusive concept, with a wider variety of subjects, styles and applications than any other art form. The potential is unlimited for what can be created or destroyed with little more than a sentence or two. Hope can be restored, or hearts can be broken. Shadows can dance with sunshine in every word you write, if you so desire. But I digress.

Perseverance is failing 19 times and succeeding the 20th.
-Julie Andrews

Time is a luxury none of us can afford. We all need more of it. No one will ever have enough. There is nothing you can do to stall its passage. That is why we need perseverance. That is why we must keep chopping wood even as the snows begins to pile around our knees. No one will write it for you. Few will care until is finished. Some won’t care until you win the only award they’ve ever heard of, or you sign a movie or television deal. It doesn’t matter anyway. All that matters is that you keep writing, keep pushing ahead, keep swinging that axe. The best thing about chopping wood? At the end, is spring. A glorious reward for the hard work you have done. I get the same feeling from spring as I do finishing my writing, whether it is a short story or a novel. I hope that feeling never gets old.

Patience and perseverance have a magical effect before which difficulties disappear and obstacles vanish.
-John Quincy Adams

The only way to succeed is to persevere. All of the talent in the world will only get you so far, which is usually couch surfing for a few years in your 20s while you make grand excuses for your grand failures. If you don’t do it then it will never get done. Don’t worry about the things that are outside of your control, they are just distracting you from the real work at hand, which is finishing your next book. Chop, chop, chop.

I do not think that there is any other quality so essential to success of any kind as the quality of perseverance. It overcomes almost everything, even nature.
-John D. Rockefeller

Almost everyone has heard “you never fail until you give up”, and I believe this to be true. I consider it one of the few hardline philosophies I have, but there is a wonderful benefit to it. Until the day you turn off your computer, put away your keyboard, and never write another creative or informative word for publication again, traditional or otherwise, you are an Author, and no one can take that from you unless you let them.

By perseverance the snail reached the ark.
-Charles Spurgeon

Some days the miles fly by as I type out words by the thousands. Some days, I crawl along like a fly without wings, measuring progress in increments of nothingness. Often, the well dries up completely, and the crops wither in the drought. Doubt sets in and I begin to wonder if I will ever write another word again. Perhaps not everyone feels this way, but I certainly do. Sometimes the words flow through me like a torrent, as though they were once a trickling stream, swollen to a raging, gushing river by the spring thaw. Other times it feels like I’m stranded in a desert, and no matter how deeply I dig into the shaded sand, I cannot produce so much as a drop. Those tough times, those lean stretches where I wonder if I’ll ever finish anything ever again, are what makes the good times so damn good. If it were easy, I don’t think I would appreciate it as much as I do. Sometimes it certainly feels easy enough. The rest of the time, it is impossible, insurmountable, overwhelming and beyond my capabilities.

Thinking is an experimental dealing with small quantities of energy, just as a general moves miniature figures over a map before setting his troops in action.
-Sigmund Freud

So, I keep writing. I keep chopping wood. As the sun sets earlier each day, I remind myself that at the end of the long, frozen nights and cold, shortened days is another beautiful, wondrous spring.

Chop. Chop. Chop.

…thanks for the excellent Guest Post contributions, that man, Charles… see yeez later… LUV YEEZ!



Filed under Blether, Scribbling & Stuff

…standby for terrific Guest Post #2 from Author, Charles Hash…


Filed under Blether, Scribbling & Stuff

…the first of three superb Guest Blog posts from Author Charles Hash…

Author and Blogger pal, Charles Hash, has delivered not one… not two… but three excellent pieces for inclusion as Guest Blog posts on my ‘umble page… and each is superb… but I’m gonna give yeez these staggered over the next week or two, Lads and Lassies of Blog Land… we don’t wanna spoil yeez with too much quality all in one shot!… here’s the first:


I wonder exactly why I am doing this. What do I hope to accomplish? Do I just want some fleeting attention? Do I want fame, fortune, and all of the pressure that comes with it? Why would anyone seek to be put into a cage, to be put on display for gawkers and critics alike, poked at and dissected endlessly for some abstract concepts like respect or adulation, or even a more concrete reason like financial security? Begging strangers for the right and priviledge to be raked thin over the coals, before being doused with a liquid of suspicious origin? Don’t forget to thank them for the luxury of being read. Today is the day that I no longer care about the system or gaming it.

Just the word submit rubs me wrong and makes me clench as a singular muscle.

I am not just an Indie Author, I am an Outlaw Author. What does that mean? I have my own rules, I have my own standards, I have my own style, and I will not let anyone take that from me, even if that means my work remains unsold and dusty on the shelf. I wish there were more of us in every genre. Whether in music, painting, film, we need those that reject convention.

We believe technique to be nothing more than failed style. -Cecil B Demented

Artists of any walk have never gotten very far by playing by the rules. Art is about cutting away at the conventional, whether you use a scalpel or an axe. Personally, I prefer hammers.

Human beings were born to be free to choose the chains that they wish to bind themselves with.

But my writing, my work, my authorship, my babies…why should I subject them to submission? For profit? For accolades? Should I throw them on the table to be butchered, dissected, culled, broken, and then reconstructed for mass consumption until they are no longer recognizable? Should I bow to the insistence that you need an army of visionless leeches to declare your work valuable and worthy, and therefore profitable? No. I need to work harder. I need to revise more. I need to reread it again, and again, and again. Without so much as a professional proofer, I have to revise, edit, and cultivate the entirety of my work more than a dozen times. Still things slip through. I need to make sure that I am focused and dedicated to my work in every way that I possibly can be, to the point of obsession and distraction. I should never forget what I am working on, what I hope to write next, and then after that, beyond all of those. It is an addiction, an obsession, a primal craving deep inside to communicate with others on a level that I am incapable of through any other medium.

I like the freedom. I like the control. I like knowing at the end of the day I did things my way, on my own terms, and I succeeded or failed by my own standards, and not those set by some detached, voracious, faceless shareholders. I offer my sweat and blood, my dreams and fears directly to the readers, and not some agent or publisher to be dismissed and tossed into a grave and abandoned to rot. I work on my own schedule, on my own time, to meet my own demands. I do not write for myself. I do not write for the readers. I write because I cannot communicate like this verbally with other humans.

What you get by achieving your goals is not as imporant as what you become by achieving your goals.

Henry David Thoreau

I have always preferred the unbeaten path, the wild, untamed weeds where mysteries are unfurled, solved. The dark, twisting depths where treasures are still to be found, where you have to dig deeper and push harder before you can finally pull yourself up to the crest to enjoy the view. Solemn, melancholy places where the dirt and grime authenticate your achievements. Where you develop character and resilience; the resolve to keep chopping wood for the winter while the snow gathers around you in drifts, deeper and deeper.

I’m not condemning anyone for choosing a different path, or accepting a lucrative contract. I wish all of the luck and fortune to the other Indies and Outlaws that I can, no matter which path they choose for themselves. That would be hypocritical and contradictory to what I am, and why I chose the path of the Outlaw. When someone offers constructive criticism, take it. Let it hurt. Roll it around inside of you like a dirty little ball until you’ve learned everything you can from it. When someone offers just criticism with no constructive dialogue, just brush it off and keep writing. In a perfect world we’d all have publishing contracts, with editors and professional cover artists, and enough money to sail around the world while we write our next novel. But that’s not why I write. Being an Outlaw Author is what ultimately makes it worthwhile to write, and being an independent author is why what I write becomes more than an exercise in futility.

I simply reject the industry. I no longer need it. They can keep the flesh they’ve taken from me. The next time they darken my door, it will be on my terms. But that is probably just the bourbon talking.

…thanks for whetting our appetite with this first offering, Charles... see yeez later… LUV YEEZ!


Filed under Blether, Scribbling & Stuff