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A Writer's Life: A Podcast About Writing Books and Music

Updated 9 days ago

Arts
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Music Commentary
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A weekly podcast on reading, writing music and books, and any thing else that takes my fancy. If you are looking for writing tips and NPR whisper-voices, this isn’t the podcast for you.If, however, you’d like to join in on a conversation about the life that surrounds writing books and songs, then you’ve found a home, a friend, and a passionate lover.

Read more

A weekly podcast on reading, writing music and books, and any thing else that takes my fancy. If you are looking for writing tips and NPR whisper-voices, this isn’t the podcast for you.If, however, you’d like to join in on a conversation about the life that surrounds writing books and songs, then you’ve found a home, a friend, and a passionate lover.

iTunes Ratings

62 Ratings
Average Ratings
37
7
1
2
15

moniqueamelie

By moniqueamelie - Aug 20 2019
Read more
The funniest podcast on writing... Glad your back.

Dan sounds insane.

By Dissonantly - Feb 11 2016
Read more
I have no problem with this. What writer isn't?

iTunes Ratings

62 Ratings
Average Ratings
37
7
1
2
15

moniqueamelie

By moniqueamelie - Aug 20 2019
Read more
The funniest podcast on writing... Glad your back.

Dan sounds insane.

By Dissonantly - Feb 11 2016
Read more
I have no problem with this. What writer isn't?

Listen to:

Cover image of A Writer's Life: A Podcast About Writing Books and Music

A Writer's Life: A Podcast About Writing Books and Music

Updated 9 days ago

Read more

A weekly podcast on reading, writing music and books, and any thing else that takes my fancy. If you are looking for writing tips and NPR whisper-voices, this isn’t the podcast for you.If, however, you’d like to join in on a conversation about the life that surrounds writing books and songs, then you’ve found a home, a friend, and a passionate lover.

Rank #1: 017 - How (not) to Write a Novel

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Is our writing adding to the noise, or do we have something different to offer? What are we looking for as writers? Dan tries to flesh out these questions and comes to a conclusion as to whom we write for.

A Writer’s Letters

Sign up now for Dan Black’s semi-weekly letter. Plus get writing tips, essays, recommendations, book discussions and who the heck knows what else. This content is only available in the newsletter, so sign up now and don’t miss out!

Dan’s Recommendation of the Month

The Buried Giant by Kazuo Ishiguro http://amzn.to/1DQsdAb

Your Kindness Makes Us Squeal with Delight!

Support through Patreon or PayPal.

Contact

Email your poetry to: dan@awlshow.com General questions: info@awlshow.com

All links are affiliates in support of this wonderful program and its very, very good-looking host. This is a production of Pale Fire Creative © 2015 http://www.palefirecreative.com

Apr 14 2015

1hr 2mins

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Rank #2: #48 - Bad Anxiety, Isolation, and Fat Bad Boys

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Today I talk about my anxiety troubles and how I got out of them. I also get into why I think stand up comedy is experiencing such a boom.

Mentioned:

Saul Bellow ("Henderson the Rain King")

Stephen King ("The Institute" - his newest book)

Bad Boys 3 trailer (on YouTube)

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Subscribe on iTunes: https://apple.co/2ZlJDFH

Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/awriterslifepod

Youtube: http://www.youtube.com/palefirecreative

Goodreads.com: https://www.goodreads.com/awriterslife

Review us on ios: https://link.chtbl.com/writers-life-podcast

Email me, bro: dan [at] palefirecreative [dot] com

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Support: If you would like to advertise on the show you can contact us at palefirecreative [at] gmail [dot] com http://www.palefirecreative.com

Sep 09 2019

1hr 5mins

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Rank #3: 023- How to Write Like Neil Gaiman

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How important is finding a daily rhythm in a writer’s life? If it’s broken and we find ourselves not doing our job, how do we get that rhythm back? Dan talks about how important it is both to find it and, once in a while, lose it.

Also on the show Dan gives 5 ways to write more like Neil Gaiman, the award winning author of such works as Neverwhere, Coraline, American Gods, and several short story collections.

Visit http://awlshow.com for complete show notes.

Mentioned on the show

The works used as examples on the show all came from Neil Gaiman’s short story collection, Fragile Things

Other Works by Neil Gaiman:

Anansi Boys

The Ocean at the End of the Lane: A Novel

Neverwhere

Coraline

American Gods

Other Mentions:

Rabbit, Run by John Updike

The Book of the New Sun by Gene Wolfe

Seize the Day by Saul Bellow

The Great Book of Amber by Roger Zelazny

Dan’s Recommendation of the Month

Leaf Storm and Other Stories

by Gabriel Garcia-Marquez

Buy on Amazon:

http://bit.ly/Leafstorm

Email your poetry to: dan@awlshow.com

General questions: info@awlshow.com

May 27 2015

58mins

Play

Rank #4: 009 - Smarter Than Everyone / Starting a Short Story

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Dan talks about his neurotic way of crafting insults out of acts of kindness. He also reads the first lines of Hemingway's "Indian Camp" and "A Clean, Well-Lighted Place" and wonders about the best way to begin a short story.

Email your poetry to: dan@awlshow.com

General questions: info@awlshow.com

This is a production of Pale Fire Creative © 2015

http://www.palefirecreative.com

Mar 27 2015

1hr 2mins

Play

Rank #5: #45 - Who's the Boss, Short Stories, the C-Word, and Victor Hugo

Aug 19 2019

1hr 3mins

Play

Rank #6: 007 - A Full Writer’s Life / Predicates

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Dan gets a little heavy and discusses how he feels the world is pulling away from him. Also, he handles a different way to think of a sentence construction. Seriously, this guy may be going mad.

email questions and poetry to: dan@awlshow.comGeneral questions: info@awlshow.com This is a production of Pale Fire Creative © 2015 http://www.palefirecreative.com

Mar 25 2015

1hr

Play

Rank #7: 006 Blue Pencil Ed. - Chubby Renaissance Men

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Dan explores why he came to writing so late and the calculated risks writers take to begin their careers. Also, the value of being a renaissance man (or woman) if one is going to write from the unconscious mind.

email questions and poetry to: dan@awlshow.comGeneral questions: info@awlshow.com

http://www.palefirecreative.com

Mar 24 2015

29mins

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Rank #8: 021 - How to Use Writing Prompts Effectively

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Dan’s not a fan of writing prompts. But if you have to use them they should serve a twofold purpose.

Join Dan as he talks about the joys and frustrations of writing and

Mentioned on the show

Dangerous Visions by Harlan Elision In which his story ‘The Prowler in the City at the Edge of the World’ http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Prowler_in_the_City_at_the_Edge_of_the_World appears as a sequel to Robert Bloch’s “A Toy for Juliette”

Space Raptor Butt Invasion by Chuck Tingle The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown Star Wars Novels Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin Ulysses by James Joyce enter link description hereA&P by John Updike

Buy on Amazon: http://bit.ly/Leafstorm

Contact

Email your poetry to: dan@awlshow.com General questions: info@awlshow.com

All links are affiliates in support of this wonderful program and its very, very good-looking host.

This is a production of Pale Fire Creative © 2015 http://www.palefirecreative.com

May 14 2015

1hr

Play

Rank #9: 020 - Becoming a Competent Self-editor

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How deep does Impostor Syndrome run in a writer? Can a brother ever snap out of it and make the jump from poseur to”real” writer.

Also on the show, Dan defends his assertion that Garcia-Marquez is better than Hemingway and then gives some tips on how to become a competent self-editor. Not an easy thing to do, but absolutely essential to art of writing well.

Get a FREE copy of Rilke’s ‘Letters to a Young Poet’

Just go to iTunes and leave a written review. When you’re done, email Dan (dan@awlshow.com) with your name, address and itunes nickname and he will send you a copy of Rainer Maria Rilke’s famous work ‘Letters to a Young Poet’.

The first six to email will get the book and maybe some other cool stuff too.

A Writer’s Letters

Sign up now for Dan Black’s monthly newsletter. Plus get writing tips, essays, recommendations, book discussions and who the heck knows what else. This content is only available in the newsletter, so sign up now and don’t miss out!

Mentioned on the show

Leaf Storm

A Farewell to Arms by Ernest Hemingway

How Benjamin Franklin learned to write

Love in the Time of Cholera by Gabriel Garcia-Marquez

Need proof that some people need to stop writing? Here you go :

Sex Raptor Butt Invasion by Chuck Tingle (Yep, this exists)

           [Taken by the T-Rex by Christie Sims](http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00FI9JFFO/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=9325&creativeASIN=B00FI9JFFO&linkCode=as2&tag=palfircre-20&linkId=Y3SNSDFHKVOPRQUH

A little info on wild strawberries

Dan’s Recommendation of the Month

Leaf Storm and Other Stories by Gabriel Garcia-Marquez

Buy on Amazon: http://bit.ly/Leafstorm

Your Kindness Makes Us Squeal with Delight!

Support through Patreon or PayPal.

Contact

Email your poetry to: dan@awlshow.com General questions: info@awlshow.com

All links are affiliates in support of this wonderful program and its very, very good-looking host.

This is a production of Pale Fire Creative © 2015 http://www.palefirecreative.com

May 04 2015

1hr

Play

Rank #10: 026 - The Art of Self-Sabotage

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The Art of Self-Sabotage

What does it mean to write broad fiction? If everyone likes your work, is it still art? Join the ol’ DB for a discussion on popularity and the dangers of being an internet hipster and maybe we’ll even take a stroll through a forest called ‘Holy Crap Why Am I So Intent On Self Sabotage’. It’s full of nettles and not many return from the journey, but who doesn’t like an adventure?

Also on the show, what all good writers have in common when it comes to details in a narrative.

Visit http://awlshow.com for complete show notes.

Help out the show and clickthrough our Amazon page!

Mentioned on the show

Haunting of Hill by Shirley Jackson

Why Reddit Sucks (Washinton Post Article)

Led Zeppelin IV

Antifogmatic by Punch Brothers

The Phosphorescent Blues by Punch Brothers

G. by John Berger (Not “Nine” as was said on the show)

Finders Keepers by Steven King (his newest novel)

Seize the Day by Saul Bellow

Dan’s Recommendation of the Month

Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel

Email your poetry or questions to: dan@awlshow.com

Copyright 2015 - Pale Fire Creative

Jul 05 2015

45mins

Play

Rank #11: 014 - Pleasure Your Characters

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The necessity of pleasure to the writer. Also, characters and how they must come into contact with their worlds.

A Writer’s Letters

Sign up now for Dan Black's semi-weekly letter. Plus get writing tips, essays, recommendations, 

book discussions and who the heck knows what else. This content is only available in the newsletter, so sign up now and don’t miss out!

Your Kindness Makes Us Squeal with Delight!

Support through Patreon or PayPal.

Contact

Email your poetry to: mailto:dan@awlshow.com

All links are affiliates in support of this wonderful program and its very, very good-looking host. 

This is a production of Pale Fire Creative © 2015 http://www.palefirecreative.com

Apr 01 2015

1hr 2mins

Play

Rank #12: 016 - Beautiful Women / Literary Narrative Voice

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Dan meets the most beautiful girl he's ever seen and gets into certain narrative voices that can poison your novel.

Your Kindness Makes Us Squeal with Delight!

Support through Patreon or PayPal.                     

Contact

Email your poetry to: mailto:dan@awlshow.com

General questions: info@awlshow.com

All links are affiliates in support of this wonderful program and its very, very good-looking host. 

This is a production of Pale Fire Creative © 2015 http://www.palefirecreative.com

Apr 08 2015

1hr 1min

Play

Rank #13: 027 - The Patterson Effect

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What is the difference between popular books and “Literature”? The DB shares his opinions.

Also, The DB contrasts cheap suspense with the idea of a “flowering” narrative.

Sign up for the newsletter HERE

Pale Fire creative ©2015

Visit http://awlshow.com for complete show notes.

Help out the show and clickthrough our Amazon page!

Mentioned on the show

James Patterson Masterclass

Freakonomics Podcast

Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson

Kafka on the Shore by Haruki Murakami

The Sound and the Fury by William Faulkner

One of Harlan Coben’s Books

Underworld: A Novel by Don DeLillo

An interesting (and controversial) article on MFAs

Bel Canto (P.S.) by Ann Patchett

All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doer

Dan’s Recommendation of the Month

Kafka on the Shore by Haruki Murakami

Email your poetry or questions to: dan@awlshow.com

Copyright 2015 - Pale Fire Creative

Aug 02 2015

42mins

Play

Rank #14: 012 - A Writer's Money/Publishing World

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Writing is difficult and the temptation to simply float your work out on the internet is tempting. But maybe, Dan muses, that isn't the best thing to do.

DB talks about a writer's time on earth, and how it looks a little different than the regular person's.

Also on the show, Dan reads from the introduction of a William Saroyan short story collection written by the author. Saroyan gives us insight into a writer's life in the year 1943. Much has changed in the last 70 years. Has it been for the better? Hmmmm.

Join the discussion as Dan sifts through the murky waters that are his opinions and tries to figure it all out.

One More Thing:

We are making a big push for iTunes reviews to move up in the rankings

Help poor, neurotic DB in the quest to elevate the show in the rankings and review it on iTunes HERE.

Thank you!

Mentioned in the show:

Someday I'll be a Millionaire by William Saroyan

The Human Comedy by William Saroyan

Ulysses by James Joyce

Amzon's Top Books This Week (A link in the show notes to make up for what Dan said about authors who publish on Amazon)

Your Kindness Makes Us Squeal with Delight!

Support through Patreon or PayPal.

Contact

Email your poetry to: dan@awlshow.com

General questions: info@awlshow.com

All links are affiliates in support of this wonderful program and its very, very good-looking host. 

This is a production of Pale Fire Creative © 2015 http://www.palefirecreative.com

Mar 31 2015

1hr 2mins

Play

Rank #15: #44 - A Proper Introduction of Your Humble Host

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Today I give a proper introduction literally from birth. There's also some stuff about short stories and religion.

Books I Mention:

Lost Horizon by James Hilton

The Great Divorce by C.S. Lewis

The Space Trilogy by C.S. Lewis

Some of the STAR WARS books I've read:

Heir to the Empire by Timothy Zahn

Truce at Bakura by Kathy Tyres

 The Courtship of Princess Leia by Dave Wolverton

Jedi Search by Kevin J. Anderson

Aug 11 2019

1hr 9mins

Play

Rank #16: 010 - Working the Angles /Irony Part 1

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Dan talks about taking a look at things from another angle and the opportunities writers miss whilst being normal. He also disrespects irony and the popular method of beginning a work of fiction.

Letters to a Young Poet by Rainer Maria Rilke

Short Stories 1896 - 1904 (The Complete Short Stories of Anton Chekov)

(A&P - short story) My Father's Tears: And Other Stories by John Updike

Fifty Shades of Grey (The Fifty Shades Trilogy) (if you have to buy it, might as well do it here.)

Your Kindness Makes Us Squeal with Delight!

Support through Patreon or PayPal.

Contact

Email your poetry to: dan@awlshow.com

General questions: info@awlshow.com

All links are affiliates in support of this wonderful program and its very, very good-looking host. 

This is a production of Pale Fire Creative © 2015 http://www.palefirecreative.com

Mar 27 2015

1hr 10mins

Play

Rank #17: 013 - Print is Good/Building Characters

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On today's show Dan apologizes for his disparaging remarks on self-published authors.

Our big push for iTunes reviews.

We are making a big push for iTunes reviews to move up in the rankings.

Help poor, neurotic DB in the quest to elevate the show in the rankings and review it on iTunes HERE.

Thank you fir your support!

A Writer’s Letters

Sign up now for Dan Black's semi-weekly letter. Plus get writing tips, essays, recommendations, 

book discussions and who the heck knows what else. This content is only available in the newsletter, so sign up now and don’t miss out!

Mentioned in the show:

Pale Fire by Vladimir Nabokov

How Fiction Works by James Wood

Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov

Ethan Frome by Edith Wharton

Joseph Conrad: A Personal Rememberance by Ford Maddox Ford

Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad

Queen Hortense by Guy de Maupassant

Your Kindness Makes Us Squeal with Delight!

Support through Patreon or PayPal.

Contact

Email your poetry to: dan@awlshow.com

General questions: info@awlshow.com

All links are affiliates in support of this wonderful program and its very, very good-looking host. 

This is a production of Pale Fire Creative © 2015 http://www.palefirecreative.com

Mar 31 2015

44mins

Play

Rank #18: 024 - Ticking Passage of Time Bomb

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The most skillful writers know how to manipulate time. Today DB gets disects the ins and outs of a writer's life and ponders the irony of loving something so much one finds ways to avoid it.

Get free two-day shipping with Amazon Prime

Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel

Herzog by Saul Bellow

The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafón 

The Angel's Game by Carlos Ruiz Zafón 

Of the Farm: A Novel by John Updike

Email your poetry to:

mailto:dan@awlshow.com

General questions: mailto:info@awlshow.com

www.awlshow.com

Jun 14 2015

45mins

Play

Rank #19: 025 - The Robin Thicke of Literature

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Do we rebel against certain conventions in a clumsy attempt to be unique? Dan covers a lot of topics this episode, everything from sympathetic characters to gaining insight from our natural inclination to controvert things that work in literature.

Visit http://awlshow.com for complete show notes.

Help out the show and clickthrough our Amazon page!

Mentioned on the show

Antifogmatic by Punch Brothers

The Phosphorescent Blues by Punch Brothers

Deadfall Hotel by Steve Rasnic Tem

That Thing You Do (Love this movie!)

Yeah, he exists: Chet (effin’) Hanx

…and his “music” video

Blurred Lines by Robin Thicke

Growing Pains: Season 1

Finders Keepers: A Novel by Stephen King

Seize the Day by Saul Bellow

Dan’s Recommendation of the Month

Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel

Email your poetry or questions to: dan@awlshow.com

Copyright 2015 - Pale Fire Creative

Jun 23 2015

42mins

Play

Rank #20: 015 - Micro Macro-me

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Getting all micro in your prose is a killer and makes your narrative plain and laborious to read. On this episode Dan talks about getting "Macro" and talks about giving your sentences purpose lest they become a mere list of actions. Also, he tells people how to write after telling them it's none of his business how anyone writes.

Oh, the madness is getting deeper!

Your Kindness Makes Us Squeal with Delight!

Support through Patreon or PayPal.

Contact

Email your poetry to: dan@awlshow.com

General questions: info@awlshow.com

All links are affiliates in support of this wonderful program and its very, very good-looking host. 

This is a production of Pale Fire Creative © 2015 http://www.palefirecreative.com

Apr 03 2015

39mins

Play