Friday Fun Quotes: Advertising (well, not so much) & Others

This week I offer some different types of quotes that have more to do with writing and clarity, important to all writers. Still, some of these could also apply to speaking as well. The sources are varied as are their backgrounds and some are better known than others.

Nevertheless, take heed, take heart, and take a read . . . Enjoy, learn and then act accordingly. But, it’s Friday, so have Fun!

Quote

A sentence should never be cruel and unusual.— William Burton, Esq.

I have made this letter longer than usual because I lack the time to make it shorter.— Blaise Pascal, mathematician

Clarity begins at home.— Edie Schwager, speaker with the American Medical Writers Association

The trouble with so many of us is that we underestimate the power of simplicity.— Robert Stuberg, author and speaker

I never write ‘metropolis’ for seven cents when I can write ‘city’ and get paid the same.— Mark Twain, author

When writing about science, don’t simplify the science; simplify the writing.— Julie Ann Miller, former editor of Science News 

This report, by its very length, defends itself against the risk of being read.— Winston Churchill, former British prime minister

If you don’t have time to read, you don’t have the time (or the tools) to write. Simple as that.— Stephen King, author

All good writing begins with terrible first efforts. You need to start somewhere.— Anne Lamott, author

Good writing is clear thinking made visible.— William Wheeler, journalist and author

Easy reading is damn hard writing.— Nathaniel Hawthorne, author

No compulsion in the world is stronger than the urge to edit someone else’s document.— H. G. Wells, author

 

So which one or ones resonate with you? Drop me a line and let me know why.

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Friday Fun Quotes: Masters’ Collection

This Friday’s edition of the blog again highlights various quotes in yet a different manner. Their authors don’t necessarily come from the advertising industry but are involved in some aspect of creativity.

Serling, Poe, Van Gogh, Einstein – quite a master’s collection, wouldn’t you say? While I am definitely a fan of Rod Serling and his Twilight Zone series, I also enjoy the works of my relative, Edgar Allan Poe. Yes, I am a writer. I learned years ago in reading a Louisiana history book, that my great-great-great uncle (Poe) was Edgar’s cousin or something like that.

And, yes, I do believe there is some truth to what “Uncle Edgar” (as I call him) says in the first quote below.

Uncle Edgar Quote

Edgar Allan Poe-silhoutte quote

Albert Einstein quote

Van Gogh Quote

Whenever you write, whatever you write, never make the mistake of assuming the audience is any less intelligent than you are.                                                                        –  Rod Serling 

...No matter what the future brings, man’s capacity to rise to the occasion will remain unaltered. Our  potential for tenacity and optimism continues, as always, to outfight and outlive any and all changes made by society. – Rod Serling. Twilight Zone “Steel.”

 

Rod Serling Profile:Quote

Rod Serling-Graduation

So long as you care, so long as you commit, so long as you concern yourself with the human condition, you have it in your power, perhaps twenty years from now, to be called to deliver a Commencement Address against a background of an infinitely finer world. – Rod Serling

Rod Serling-Behind Curtain

The writer broadens, becomes more observant, more tempered, wiser… It  is not something that is injected into him by a needle…  It doesn’t  work that way. It’s a tedious, tough, frustrating process, but never,  ever be put aside by the fact that it’s hard. – Rod Serling.

So, do you have a favorite? Which one really speaks to you? Let me know, and I may pass it on to Uncle Edgar!

Lady of the Living Room

A short, “short” (story).  This “short” came to me in a dream sequence recently. It was so vivid yet I could never identify the Lady, but I sort of recalled the Living Room.

 

I found her standing in the middle of the living room. But whose? This is not my house but for some reason it’s familiar. How did I get here? Who is this woman?

Attractive, stylish, middle-aged woman, dressed like 60’s women, complete with non-bufont hairdo. She’s in a silver-white business suit with dress buttons down front leading to a big belt buckle.

Martha Stewart Silhoutte

Silhouette by marthastewart.com

She’s actually from the sixties. Aside from her appearance, I seem to know that for some reason.

She never says her name.

Gazing intently into my eyes, she seems to know what I’m thinking and wondering.

She then proceeds to undress.

She gradually strips off her clothing, asking for some assistance from me. During so, she openly talks about having black underwear but not like the conservative styles of sixties’ fashion for “women her age.”

She embraces me and coyly purrs that she’s ten years older – – how does she know?

The Lady stands there before me, completely nude except for shiny black dress high heels. She appears to be completely comfortable and says she’s always been very open and passionate about sex, and with men of all ages.

We embrace and have a passionate kiss. Only then do I break away to get a drink when I discover the surroundings have changed.

We’re still in a house but not “that” house. Don’t know what’s happened but now I seem to be back in the sixties.

What power has she? Can I get back to my reality? Have I changed? Why has she done this?

“You told me I looked like a lady from the sixties,” she declares. “Well, you’re right; I am a lady from the sixties. And now you’re back in the sixties, too, dah-ling,” she purrs rather matter-of-factly.

“Where you’ll stay!” she blurts out flatly.

Martha Stewart Silhoutte 2

Silhouette by marthastewart.com

She starts laughing slowly; first a chuckle, then intensifying into full blown, hysterical laughter, all the while having a slight but wicked twinkle in her eye.

Then in a flash, she’s gone. Poof!

Startled, I begin to look around when I notice the windows and how pretty a day it is outside. Maybe my reality still exists beyond that window. As I near the window, however, I’m shocked to see that it’s just a painting. That’s not all; as I look around the room, I notice that ALL the windows are paintings.

What’s going on?

I move toward another window/painting, but as I pass in front of what I know is a mirror, I stop dead in my tracks. The reflection is of myself; yet, it can’t be.

Then I hear, faintly but distinctly, her hysterical laughter once again.

It appears I have now become the Lady of the Living Room.

Friday Fun Quotes: Advertising & Others

Continuing a series of various illustrious quotes, here are some worth-remembering “sayings” which I find interesting and inspiring. Hopefully, you will, too.

Some quotes are from the American Advertising Federation newsletter “Smart Brief,” while others come from various sources. Enjoy!!

Not everything that can be counted counts; and not everything that counts can be counted. – George Gallup

Innovation demands that you take risks, make mistakes, and fail.            – Keynote speaker Dr. Tony Wagner at #SASInstitute2018

My definition, then, of the creative process is that it is the emergence in action of a novel relational product, growing out of the uniqueness of the individual on the one hand, and the materials, events, people, or circumstances of his life on the other.Carl R. Rogers

I found that after meditating I would go down to my desk in my studio and sit there to write. And nothing would come. Everything was so peaceful, so harmonious; I was blissed out. And I had to realize through harsh experience that the secret of being a writer is to go to your desk with your mind full of chaos, full of formlessness—formlessness of the night before, formlessness which threatens you, changes you.Rollo May (making an identical observation about his creative process. He was also a visual artist and worked full-time as a writer before becoming a psychologist.)

We were created to be creative, and every day is a battle to turn that into more joy than frustration. – Lee Clow

Now that I have your attention, here are 94 characters making you regret that you gave it. Just like most advertising today. – Lee Clow

The secret of change is to focus all your energy not on fighting the old but on building the new. – Socrates

Second hand books are wild books, homeless books; they have come together in vast flocks of variegated feather, and have a charm which the domesticated volumes of the library lack.  Virginia Woolf

The saddest aspect of life right now is that science gathers knowledge faster than society gathers wisdom.  Isaac Asimov

It is difficult to produce a television documentary that is both incisive and probing when every twelve minutes one is interrupted by twelve dancing rabbits singing about toilet paper.  Rod Serling

 

Dreams . . . Cancer . . . Nightmares . . . Sleeplessness . . . What of Insomnia?

Note: This week begins a celebration of World Creativity and Innovation Week, April 15-21. I thought it appropriate to highlight some intriguing, insightful and, hopefully, entertaining bits and pieces of creativity and innovation from around our globe.

My initial offering deals with Insomnia and how, for some people, it can be truly nightmarish. This post includes information and images from both a presentation on insomnia and select photos by a photographer who has severely suffered from insomnia.

In this excerpt from an issue of Adobe Create Magazine, the photog takes us into his bizarre world of striking, nightmarish illusions.

And his fight with insomnia.

Photographer Nicolas Bruno has suffered from sleep paralysis since he was seven years old. In Bruno’s case, when he enters REM sleep, his mind becomes conscious, or awake, but his body remains asleep. During these recurring episodes, he experiences shortness of breath or pressure on his chest and the feeling that he’s being choked or is going to be killed. Screaming shadow figures menace him in bed. He’s unable to move, and the state seems to last hours. Sometimes it stops because he awakens; other times he moves into another dream. All of it is out of his control.

And you thought you had nightmares!

BrunoSleepless-3

When Bruno was fifteen, he began experiencing sleep paralysis almost every night. To help process the resulting stress, he kept a dream journal and then turned to drawing and photography. At first, he photographed mostly landscapes and abandoned places. Over time, he started making work directly inspired by what he goes through during sleep paralysis.

“Transforming my experiences with sleep paralysis into artwork not only helps me understand the dreams,” Bruno says. “It gives me a universal voice to speak about something almost impossible to describe with words. After I complete a photo shoot and see my final image, I feel so relieved to have transformed a once uncontrollable nightmare into something positive and tangible.”

BrunoSleepless-1

“The characters I portray within my work are figures I’ve documented within my sleep paralysis episodes. Faceless men in suits often stand at the foot of my bed, and women in dresses might float across my bedroom to shriek in my ear. Sometimes I’m grasped by hands that attempt to drag me off of my bed. These characters reoccur, transform, and sometimes reveal more about themselves as time goes on,” explains Bruno.

Though Bruno still suffers from regular episodes of sleep paralysis, he has learned to minimize the contributing factors, which include excessive stress, too much screen time before bed, an irregular sleep schedule, and sleeping in unfamiliar locations.

BrunoSleepless-2

“As I’ve become used to the feelings,” he says, “I’ve found that riding out the experience subdues the terrifying nature of the dream and can leave room for analysis, and even a quick exit. If you allow the fear to win, you’ll never have control of the situation. My advice is to build up your courage to face these dreams head on, whether it be through strength, religion, logic, or spiritualism.”

I struggle with sleeplessness and insomnia, too. Strange dreams of partially true vignettes of moments in my past life sometimes intermingle with “newly scripted” happenings, making for a weird combination of mental nighttime gymnastics.

I’m a cancer survivor as well as a caregiver to my wife. No stress here!

When I consider the various meds I take daily as well as the numerous decisions and judgement calls my wife and I make on a daily basis, it’s probably no wonder why I have insomnia. And weird dreams.

I was interested when I heard about a lecture recently given by MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston relative to sleeplessness and insomnia. Here’s a link to a presentation I received that evening so you, too, can gain insight into this all-too troubling disorder.

Please don’t hesitate to share your own insomnia stories, especially if you have learned some techniques to counter or offset this malaise.

 

 

 

 

Friday Fun Quotes: Advertising and Otherwise

Continuing a series of various illustrious quotes, here are some worth-remembering “sayings” which I find interesting and inspiring. Hopefully, you will, too.

Some quotes are from the American Advertising Federation newsletter “Smart Brief,” while others come from various sources. Enjoy!!

quote

Maybe that’s enlightenment enough: to know that there is no final resting place of mind; no moment of smug clarity. Perhaps wisdom… is realizing how small I am, and unwise, and how far I have yet to go.   Anthony Bourdain, 1956-2018

There is no way for the American economic system to function without advertising. – John O’Toole

He who can no longer pause to wonder and stand rapt in awe is as good as dead; his eyes are closed. – Albert Einstein

Imagination is not only the uniquely human capacity to envision that which is not, and therefore the fount of all invention and innovation. In its arguably most transformative and revelatory capacity, it is the power to that enables us to empathize with humans whose experiences we have never shared. – J. K. Rowling

I’ve always felt advertising was a major instrument of the free enterprise system. Effective advertising can not only have a truly powerful impact on clients’ fortunes but for their stockholders and employees as well and therein a great ripple effect on our economy. Liener Temerlin

To succeed, planning alone is insufficient. One must improvise as well. – Isaac Asimov

I have a theory that the best ads come from personal experience. Some of the good ones I have done have really come out of the real experience of my life, and somehow this has come over as true and valid and persuasive. – David Ogilvy

Be honest, truthful, and altruistic. If you concern yourself with taking care of others, there’ll be no room for lies, bullying and cheating. If you’re truthful you can live transparently, which will enable you to establish trust, the basis for making friends. – Dalai Lama 

There is no material with which human beings work which has so much potential energy as words. – Earnest Elmo Calkins

Inspiration can strike at anytime, anywhere. But usually not at 1 a.m. in the office. – Lee Clow via Lee Clow’s Beard tweet

So, whatchathink? Gotta favorite? Lemme know.

Ad Speaks Houston: A New Kind of Podcast

Do you have a favorite podcast? Have you ever participated in a podcast? Do you have any idea how many podcasts there are? That’s okay, neither do I!

If you’re in the Houston, Texas area and are involved in some way with the advertising industry, you’re in luck. Even if you’re not in the area, you’ll still find this interesting and may even learn a thing or two.

Curious about what is happening at AAF Houston? That’s the American Advertising Federation Houston for those who may not know. Check out Ad Speaks Houston, which airs on KPRC 950 AM from 10 am to 11 am on Sundays. If you can’t catch it on air, all of Ad Speaks Houston podcasts are on SoundCloud. 

It’s the first time AAF Houston (AAFH) has done something like this. We just want to reach out to our members and those who may be interested in joining. You’ll find a variety of topics and interviews conveying thoughts about the industry and happenings in Houston. Many thanks go to Ray Schilens (longtime supporter and current AAFH board member) of Radio Lounge for spearheading the Ad Speaks Houston podcast.

Being a longtime AAFH member myself as well as a past board member and officer, I was honored when Ray approached the board for interviews. I was glad to help launch the project. My interview with Ray is number 19 in the series. Take a listen.

Ad Speaks Houston