Tuesday, May 1, 2007

Welcome to the "Table," fellow writers...

Well, here it is, folks (although I should probably say "folk" considering I'm the only one currently reading this...), the maiden voyage...!

Let me be the first to welcome you to The Crooked Table.

First off, let me explain the blog's name. A few weeks ago, a longtime friend and I were meeting at a local Starbucks to discuss a story idea we've been developing together. He and I have both been working on other projects and had decided that we would work on a novel this summer. Anyway, this was essentially our first real brainstorming session, and we were both looking forward to start fleshing out the plot. It was a nice, breezy day out so we took our lattes outside and sat at one of the little metal tables.

Immediately upon sitting down, we noticed that our chosen table was, well, crooked. Jokingly, I asked my friend if this was a bad omen, since this occasion marked our first "meeting" about the novel. Rather than shrugging this off or ignoring my comment, he posed a radically different approach than my own. Perhaps the table's abnormality was actually a fortuitous sign, indicating that we were setting ourselves on a path of distinction. Although his comments were half-made in jest, something about his answer stuck with me, and for reasons unknown to me, I scribbled down the words "The Crooked Table" on my notepad.

At the time, I had been considering starting a blog, and when it came time to devise a name, I stumbled upon my notepad, littered with plot and character details from that soon-to-be novel I'd mentioned. I was looking to name my blog something unique, distinctive, but not overly blatant. The words jumped out at me, and I started thinking...

That experience, the seeming abnormality, of the crooked table truly fit with the concept of being a writer (bear with me...). As writers, I think we view the world in an entirely different light. I feel like we tend to be a bit overanalytical, suspicious, and inquisitive. But most of all, I think we see more than others. Whereas someone else would have never given that whole "crooked table" story a second thought, I have taken that as inspiration to create this blog. People too often pass by extraordinary people and events, not even realizing what they're missing. Like all writers, my primary source of inspiration is everyday life. Other people always wonder where writers come up with such brilliant ideas, and the answer is THEY PAY ATTENTION!

However, being a writer isn't all "sunshine and rainbows" (that's from a movie, but I can't remember which right now...). It's hard work, dedication, and often means long periods of isolation. It's a constant battle against a blank screen (or page, for those of you who work primarily out of notebooks), and often the most difficult part is just getting yourself to open up and freely and honestly express yourself. Also, since many of us must maintain ordinary (read: boring) jobs, it's a problem simply to find the time to focus your energy on writing.

I know from first-hand experience that being a writer is very rewarding, but it is definitely an inner struggle, which is why I created this blog. Writers, although some would probably never admit it, need to connect with other writers. That sense of community can really make all the difference. "The Crooked Table," as you can see from the top of this screen is designed "for writers by writers." I envision the blog as a forum for writers to interact with other writers, discuss their processes, share/promote their projects, or even post random comments/observations.

Over the past year, I've had the great privilege of meeting and getting to know some really great writers, and my intention is to get some of them to become regular contributors to "The Crooked Table." So continue checking back, as I'm sure we'll have new posts very soon!

So, fellow writers, I hope you enjoy the blog, and if you have any comments or anything you'd like to see, don't hesitate to bring it to the "Table."

Thanks for dropping by,

"I don't want to be a product of my environment. I want my environment to be a product... of me."
-Frank Costello (Jack Nicholson), The Departed

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