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ATELIER SPECIAL: THE SKY AT HER BACK -- M. Allen Cunningham announces a special workshop opportunity and reads his short story "The Sky at Her Back," which first appeared in Issue 10 of Catamaran Magazine. (All music used by courtesy of the artists through a licensing agreement with Artlist) --- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/in-the-atelier/support
WHY IT'S DESIRABLE TO BE ECCENTRIC: "Originality is the one thing which unoriginal minds cannot feel the use of." In 1859 the great English thinker John Stuart Mill published, in Chapter Three of his treatise On Liberty, one of history’s most cogent essays on the subject of Individuality, originality, genius, and eccentricity. To Mill’s view, mass opinion (what we might call “mass culture” these days), is an undeniable blight to individuality, and therefore directly threatens freedoms civic and intellectual, cultural, and democratic. While explicitly political, Mill’s argument reaches down to the foundations of human nature and culture, articulating many of the challenges artists and writers face in a media-driven society fixated upon dollars earned, hits per day, and “going viral.” Mentioned in this episode: John Stuart Mill; Mill's "On Liberty"; Victorian England; keeping up with the joneses; Ray Bradbury; bestseller lists; Billboard charts; Oprah endorsements; culture vs. commerce; becoming valuable to oneself and to others; despotism; John Gardner; the National Endowment for the Arts; the tyrannical majority; unpopular vs. uncommercial; persons of genius; arts funding.  Music: "Hands of Time" by Narrow Skies; "Interspacing" by Yehezkel Raz; "Fragments" by Borrtex; "Birds & Daisies" by Racoon Racoon (All music used courtesy of the artists through a licensing agreement with Artlist.) --- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/in-the-atelier/support
PLEASE PROVE YOU ARE NOT A ROBOT: You haven't posted in a while. Say, "OK, Google." Everyone's watching. (Recorded Sept. 2019, Brooklyn NY) --- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/in-the-atelier/support
SOUL SCHOOL, WITH JOHN KEATS: "Do you not see how necessary a world of pains and troubles is, to school an Intelligence and make it a Soul?" John Keats is saying here what Rilke put another way in 1904: "Let life happen to you. Believe me, life is in the right, always." Mentioned in this episode: John Keats; Shakespeare; Christianity; Rilke Music: "Another Green World" by Loyla; "Papyrus" by Kyle Preston; "Ballo in Casa Capuleti" by Bottega Baltazar. (All music used by courtesy of the artists through a licensing agreement with Artlist.) Episode reprised from the ITA archives. --- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/in-the-atelier/support
About Discouragement

About Discouragement

2022-04-2704:15

ABOUT DISCOURAGEMENT: Artists and writers, at some point (or several points) you're going to receive the message that your work is insignificant. You're going to wonder what use there is in continuing to do and share your work. It's unlikely that you will escape this unpleasantness. But when it arrives, remember that almost nobody escapes it -- that you've come to a new threshold. (This is a bonus Installment of IN THE ATELIER. Check out our longer episodes too.) Music: "For the Broken Hearted" by Yehezkel Raz (All music used courtesy of the artists through a licensing agreement with Artlist) IN THE ATELIER is produced by the award-winning literary publisher Atelier26 Books and hosted by M. Allen Cunningham. www.Atelier26Books.com / www.MAllenCunningham.com --- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/in-the-atelier/support
ATELIER VISIT WITH WRITER ANN STINSON: Atelier Visits take you into the creative workspaces of artists we admire. We're asking writers, visual artists, musicians, and filmmakers to bring you right inside their respective ateliers and share a bit about their process, their creative preoccupations, whatever is on their minds lately. It's an opportunity to spend a little while with various brilliant people who are busy doing good imaginative, artistic work. They'll speak to us directly about what life and creativity is like for them.  Ann Stinson is the author of the memoir The Ground at My Feet: Sustaining a Family and a Forest (Oregon State University Press, 2021). In this visit, she takes us outside, amid the trees of her family's forest in southwest Washington. In her writing, Stinson veers away from the narcissistic conventions of contemporary memoir to give us a book that is brilliantly capacious in spirit and form. Deeply personal, attuned to the big issues, and yet lastingly artful, The Ground at My Feet is an emotionally resonant family portrait and also a deliciously complex journey through time, strata, and culture. It's a nature book for the jaded urbanite, a grief report for the saccharine-allergic, and an account of transformational forest stewardship imbued with reverence and realism. Mentioned in this episode: the Cowlitz River; Mt. Rainier; the Columbia River; Douglas Firs; saw-whet owl; the stories of the forest; Richard Powers's book The Overstory; tree stumps and tree rings; the Cowlitz tribe; being alive to the possibilities of the future and the past; understanding the past anew; Thas-e-muth; Simon Plamondon; the literary utility of coat pockets; Rite in the Rain notebook; walking a trail for 50 years; Himalayan Blackberry; losing oneself to one's work; listening to the land.  Music: "Walking in Forests" by Ben Winwood; "Godnattsaga" by Beneath the Mountain; "Empty Beaches" by Paper Planes (All music used courtesy of the artists through a licensing agreement with Artlist) --- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/in-the-atelier/support
A famous author's invitation leads to a lesson about opportunity and the unexpected forms inspiration can take. Mentioned in this episode: Denis Johnson; Johnson's "Jesus' Son"; Johnson's "Tree of Smoke"; National Book Award. Music: "Anthem of a Quirky Hipster" by Rex Banner; "Lemonade" by Shtriker Big Band; "The Beat of the Land" by Assaf Ayalon (All music used by courtesy of the artists through a licensing agreement with Artlist) --- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/in-the-atelier/support
ATELIER VISIT WITH FILMMAKER & PIXAR WRITER JASON HEADLEY: Atelier Visits take you into the creative workspaces of artists we admire. We're asking writers, visual artists, musicians, and filmmakers to bring you right inside their respective ateliers and share a bit about their process, their creative preoccupations, whatever is on their minds lately. It's an opportunity to spend a little while with various brilliant people who are busy doing good imaginative, artistic work. They'll speak to us directly about what life and creativity is like for them. Jason Headley is the writer and director of the feature film A Bad Idea Gone Wrong, which won a Special Jury Prize at the South by Southwest Film Festival, and which you can view online, and co-writer of Pixar’s 2020 film Onward. Headley's short film work has been featured by NBC’s Today Show, Sundance TV, and the TED conference. He created the viral short film It’s Not About the Nail, in which he also acted, and also created the viral short film F*ck That: an Honest Meditation, and the accompanying F*ck That book and F*ck That app. But these are only few of his projects. You can find out more about them and many others at jasonheadley.com.  Mentioned in this episode: purposeful emptiness; letting the story be the distraction; West Virginia; Green Bay Packers; yard sales in San Francisco; an old man and his microwave; not adorning the inoperative; Pixar's "Onward"; cake then icing; getting the reason right; getting down in the rhubarb; perspective versus intention; weirdly angled notions; keeping it simple; Headley's film "A Bad Idea Gone Wrong"; being stuck in one's own life; South by Southwest Film Festival; South by Southwest Special Jury Prize for "A Bad Idea Gone Wrong"; hot buttered chaos; being a night person; Pixar working hours; making use of the day; the guilt of not writing; story-building and cards; Pixar telecommuting; Mural digital workspace; extra wide monitors; the incredible power of procrastination; kicking one's own ass; getting the document open; tinkering; just sort of doing it; writing versus surgery; existentialism; narcissism; fear of failure; guitar playing; joyous noise; pork parts. Music: "Working the Fields" by James Paul Mitchell; "In Awe" by Evolv; "Reborn" by Swirling Ship; "Cold (instrumental)" by Anthony Lazaro; "Make Me Mad (instrumental)" by Ofrin (All music used courtesy of the artists through a licensing agreement with Artlist) --- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/in-the-atelier/support
M. ALLEN CUNNINGHAM ON THE BROADS & BOOKS PODCAST: In the Atelier is going from weekly to occasional, but don't worry: there's lots of good listening still ahead. To make sure you hear about it whenever a new installment hits the podwaves, sign up for the Atelier26 newsletter at Atelier26Books.com. For today’s installment: a special from Broads and Books, the funny and feminist book podcast whose hosts love sharing books as much as they love sharing embarrassing stories and crackpot business ideas. Hosted by Amy and Erin, both voracious readers, Broads and Books is some of the most refreshing listening you’ll find. We can’t think of any other show that could match the fantastic chemistry and conversational rhythms between these two quick-witted bibliophiles. Recently, after listening to many many episodes of the Broads and Books himself, M. Allen Cunningham had the surreal pleasure of being a guest on the show, and it was the best time he's ever had discussing his reading life and his work as a novelist. They got him talking about his earliest formative reading, his conversion experience while accidentally watching Shakespeare’s Hamlet on screen at age 12, the classics he struggled with, the books he thinks everyone should read -- and they even got him to share the story of one of his most awkward author events. Have a listen, and check out Broads and Books wherever you get your podcasts! --- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/in-the-atelier/support
ATELIER SPECIAL: YOU, ME, AND THE SCREEN BETWEEN (AN ELEGY) -- A novelist doesn't have to write about the here and now in order to be writing about the here and now. In this special installment of In the Atelier: a new essay by M. Allen Cunningham about how today's civic breakdowns are rooted in a pandemic of screen-addiction that goes back to a misunderstood chapter of American history. Cunningham's new novel Q&A reimagines those historic events in light of our own time.  You can read Cunningham's essay in full at: medium.com/@M_A_Cunningham Find excerpts from Cunningham's novel at: mallencunningham.com/qa Mentioned in this episode: clarity of mind and clarity of line; M. Allen Cunningham's novel Q&A; what screens gave us; agitation; neverending flood of images; instantaneousness; Daniel J. Boorstin; involuntary commitments; landfills; questioning the value of privacy; all things reduced to equivalence; performing our lives; sharing economy; attention economy; gig economy; creative class; the Arab Spring; Occupy Wall Street; the Million Women March; Black Lives Matter; new neural networks; from ideas to memes; bots and trolls; 45th American presidency; impeachment; big onscreen metrics; television history; quiz shows; quiz show scandals; Twenty-One; Charles Van Doren; Columbia University; Pulitzer Prize; TV fakes; Van Doren's Congressional statement; disinformation; conspiracy theories; CBS Radio's Invitation to Learning; the warped logic of the small screen; rewards come to those who fake; Lionel Trilling; Trilling's Sincerity & Authenticity; self-deception; seeming over being; JFK assassination; Vietnam War; OJ Simpson trial; reality TV; "likes," "friends," & stats; Facebook; Twitter; Instagram; techno-cultural remodeling of self and society; democratic breakdowns; The Apprentice; counterfeit selves; ideological entrenchment; bamboozling the self; web-enabled tools of self-delusion; viral falsehoods; Covid; the 2020 election; windows versus mirrors; screen addiction; narcissism; the screen mind; YouTube; the insanity of January 6th, 2021. Music: "Youth" by ANBR; "Tremors" by Spearfisher; "Tell Me You Love Me" by Kick Lee; "Unknown" by Kutiman; "Blood Meridian" by Spearfisher; "Thoughts" by ANBR (All music used courtesy of the artists through a licensing agreement with Artlist.) --- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/in-the-atelier/support
ATELIER VISIT WITH WRITER BESS WINTER: Atelier Visits take you into the creative workspaces of artists we admire. We're asking writers, visual artists, musicians, and filmmakers to bring you right inside their respective ateliers and share a bit about their process, their creative preoccupations, whatever is on their minds lately. It's an opportunity to spend a little while with various brilliant people who are busy doing good imaginative, artistic work. They'll speak to us directly about what life and creativity is like for them. Bess Winter's debut short story collection, Machines of Another Era, appeared from Gold Wake Press in January 2021. Her work appears in American Short Fiction, Gettysburg Review, Alaska Quarterly Review, Ecotone, W.W. Norton’s Flash Fiction International, and elsewhere, and has been awarded a Pushcart Prize and the American Short[er] Fiction Prize. An Assistant Professor of English at Eastern Illinois University, she’s Editor-in-Chief of Bluestem Magazine. Visit BessWinter.com. Mentioned in this episode: Urbana, IL; Roger Ebert; David Foster Wallace; Stanley Elkin; William Gass; old dolls; ghosts. Music: "Deep Brown Eyes" and "Grace" by Raccoon Racoon (Music used courtesy of the artist through a licensing agreement with Artlist.) This episode reprised from the ITA archives. --- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/in-the-atelier/support
WHY IT'S DESIRABLE TO BE ECCENTRIC: "Originality is the one thing which unoriginal minds cannot feel the use of." In 1859 the great English thinker John Stuart Mill published, in Chapter Three of his treatise On Liberty, one of history’s most cogent essays on the subject of Individuality, originality, genius, and eccentricity. To Mill’s view, mass opinion (what we might call “mass culture” these days), is an undeniable blight to individuality, and therefore directly threatens freedoms civic and intellectual, cultural, and democratic. While explicitly political, Mill’s argument reaches down to the foundations of human nature and culture, articulating many of the challenges artists and writers face in a media-driven society fixated upon dollars earned, hits per day, and “going viral.” Mentioned in this episode: John Stuart Mill; Mill's "On Liberty"; Victorian England; keeping up with the joneses; Ray Bradbury; bestseller lists; Billboard charts; Oprah endorsements; culture vs. commerce; becoming valuable to oneself and to others; despotism; John Gardner; the National Endowment for the Arts; the tyrannical majority; unpopular vs. uncommercial; persons of genius; arts funding.  Music: "Hands of Time" by Narrow Skies; "Interspacing" by Yehezkel Raz; "Fragments" by Borrtex; "Birds & Daisies" by Racoon Racoon (All music used courtesy of the artists through a licensing agreement with Artlist.) --- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/in-the-atelier/support
ATELIER VISIT WITH WRITER AMY LEE LILLARD: Atelier Visits take you into the creative workspaces of artists we admire. We're asking writers, visual artists, musicians, and filmmakers to bring you right inside their respective ateliers and share a bit about their process, their creative preoccupations, whatever is on their minds lately. It's an opportunity to spend a little while with various brilliant people who are busy doing good imaginative, artistic work. They'll speak to us directly about what life and creativity is like for them. Today: award-winning fiction writer Amy Lee Lillard at home in Des Moines, Iowa. Lillard's debut book, the kick-ass short story collection DIG ME OUT, is coming from Atelier26 Books in October 2021 and available for preorder now at Atelier26Books.com.  Mentioned in this episode: election seasons; rad Raygun tees; living on your own; old houses; bats; feral cats; maintenance calls; rainbow fire; working from home; Broads and Books podcast; Sleater Kinney; Bikini Kill; Nine Inch Nails; Trent Reznor; Iggy Pop; profane cross-stitch; owning your creative identity.   Music: "Wellington Joke" by Manos Mars; "Du Da" by Ian Post; "Broken Radios" by Stanley Gurvich; "Start Over" by Skygaze; "Just Right" by Generation Lost (All music used courtesy of the artists through a licensing agreement with Artlist) --- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/in-the-atelier/support
ABOUT DISCOURAGEMENT: Artists and writers, at some point (or several points) you're going to receive the message that your work is insignificant. You're going to wonder what use there is in continuing to do and share your work. It's unlikely that you will escape this unpleasantness. But when it arrives, remember that almost nobody escapes it -- that you've come to a new threshold. This is a bonus Installment of IN THE ATELIER. Check out our longer episodes too. IN THE ATELIER is produced by the award-winning literary publisher Atelier26 Books and hosted by M. Allen Cunningham. www.Atelier26Books.com / www.MAllenCunningham.com. Music: "For the Broken Hearted" by Yehezkel Raz (All music used courtesy of the artists through a licensing agreement with Artlist) This installment reprised from the ITA archives. --- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/in-the-atelier/support
The Value of Travel

The Value of Travel

2021-03-1716:01

THE VALUE OF TRAVEL: Reflections on travel and inspiration, on travel and parenting, on travel and expense, and on travel as a personal, creative, and maybe even moral responsibility. Mentioned in this episode: where ideas come from; spurring inspiration; child-rearing; American passport holders; innumerable (and numerable) benefits of travel; the "go while you're young" mindset; travel and affordability; travel as excessive expense; prioritizing travel; serendipity; artists on national currency; small cultural differences; Adam Gopnick; Gopnick's Paris to the Moon; unquantifiable value; bringing a child abroad. Music: "Mood" by We Are the Good; "Flight of the Inner Bird" by Sivan Talmor; "Lives" by Angel Salazar (All music used courtesy of the artists through a licensing agreement with Artlist.) --- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/in-the-atelier/support
Produced by Atelier26 Books, hosted by M. Allen Cunningham --- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/in-the-atelier/support
ATELIER VISIT WITH WRITER WOODY SKINNER: Atelier Visits take you into the creative workspaces of artists we admire. We're asking writers, visual artists, musicians, and filmmakers to bring you right inside their respective ateliers and share a bit about their process, their creative preoccupations, whatever is on their minds lately. It's an opportunity to spend a little while with various brilliant people who are busy doing good imaginative, artistic work. They'll speak to us directly about what life and creativity is like for them. Woody Skinner's debut short story collection, A Thousand Distant Radios, was published by Atelier26 Books and was a semi-finalist for PEN America's  PEN/Bingham Prize for Debut Fiction. His work has won the Sherwood Anderson Fiction Award and appeared in Mid-American Review, The Carolina Quarterly, Hobart, Booth, Another Chicago Magazine, and elsewhere. Mentioned in this episode: chalkware cowboys; 1950s beer cans; cluttered desk-space; mid-century masculinity; Arkansas; Cincinnati, OH; Chicago, IL; objects and the imagination; Luke Geddes' novel Heart of Junk; Bess Winter's Machines of Another Era; Skinner's short story "The Knife Salesman"; writing in coffee shops; crust punks; scones; the value of corporate environments; the virtues of boredom. Music: "Winner" by Ofrin; "Tunnel Vision" and "Memories" by Stanley Gurvich; "Lost in the Future" by Swirling Ship (All music used courtesy of the artists through a licensing agreement with Artlist) This episode reprised from the ITA Archives. --- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/in-the-atelier/support
IT IS NATURAL TO NEED HELP: Once upon a time I relished the idea of “making it” on my own. I didn’t foresee the hazards. Mentioned in this episode: Being a lone wolf; acting versus writing; self-reliance; the rat race; grants and fellowships; Malcolm Gladwell; Gladwell's "Outliers"; Thornton Wilder; meritocracy; Alain de Botton; Botton's "Status Anxiety"; Andrew Carnegie; success myths; moral debts; editors Music: "Killing Time" by Stanley Gurvich; "Drift" by Be Still the Earth (All music used courtesy of the artists through a licensing agreement with Artlist) This episode reprised from the ITA Archives. --- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/in-the-atelier/support
ATELIER VISIT WITH FILMMAKER BRIAN PADIAN: Atelier Visits take you into the creative workspaces of artists we admire. We're asking writers, visual artists, musicians, and filmmakers to bring you right inside their respective ateliers and share a bit about their process, their creative preoccupations, whatever is on their minds lately. It's an opportunity to spend a little while with various brilliant people who are busy doing good imaginative, artistic work. They'll speak to us directly about what life and creativity is like for them. Brian Padian is the writer/director of the award-winning web series Microagressions, which played at NYC Webfest, the feature-length film The Black Sea, the forthcoming web series Man of La Mansion, and the forthcoming feature-length film Sister/Brother. Mentioned in this episode: telecommuting; breakfast for the kids; day jobs; something to push against; laziness; the problems with monomaniacal ambition; monotony and the "meaningless"; Final Cut; Padian's first feature film The Black Sea; American Film Institute; Ingmar Bergman; Mike Leigh's Naked; David Lynch's Lost Highway; Jim Jarmusch's Dead Man; artist Noah Nakell; Sight & Sound magazine; Film Comment magazine; Filmmaker magazine; American Cinematographers magazine; naivete; Padian's short film "The Big Black Dark"; bookshelves as totems; screenplay versus finished film; budget limitations; screenwriting as travel planning; primacy of image, cast, and crew; the hazards of the artist's waiting and wanting; power in the doing; the Oregon coast; sneaker waves; dolly tracks; letting go; aspiration versus reality; tiny miracles. Music: "Retrospecting" by Yehezkel Raz; "Per Paura Che Si Rompa" by Bottega Baltazar; "Momentum" by Borrtex; "Roots" by I Am Fowler (All music used courtesy of the artists through a licensing agreement with Artlist) --- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/in-the-atelier/support
SOUL SCHOOL WITH JOHN KEATS: The English poet John Keats died unknown to the world at age twenty-five. The odds were against him from the start. Today his poetic mastery is often cited as being second only to Shakespeare. In this episode we look at a letter Keats wrote in 1819, in which he called the world "the vale of Soul-Making."  Mentioned in this episode: John Keats; Shakespeare; Christianity; Rilke Music: "Another Green World" by Loyla; "Papyrus" by Kyle Preston; "Ballo in Casa Capuleti" by Bottega Baltazar. (All music used by courtesy of the artists through a licensing agreement with Artlist.) Episode reprised from the ITA archives. --- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/in-the-atelier/support
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