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Take the drama out of creating interesting work

All images by Jason McBride


How to live with ghosts

All images by Jason McBride

My mom died on Christmas Day 2018.

My dad died in May of 2019.

But lately, they’re everywhere.

Today I saw my mom in my oldest daughter’s face when she laughed.

When that hard-working drive-thru employee asked me if it was okay if the freeze we ordered was only three-quarters full, and I asked if it was okay if we only paid three-quarters of the price, I heard my dad.


Title card. Background is a black and gray maze. The title in green letters reads “Trapped in the Maze”.
Title card. Background is a black and gray maze. The title in green letters reads “Trapped in the Maze”.
All images created by Jason McBride

She wears her enemies around her neck.


Nobody wants your content

Image is a collage created by Jason McBride from licensed stock photos and public domain images.

Content is not a useful term. It doesn’t describe anything. Content is generic, and we live in a time ruled by hyper-specificity.

Saying you create content is as meaningful as saying you make stuff.

The world has enough stuff. Nobody needs more stuff. Somebody may need a new pair of mittens, and someone else may want a solar-powered fan, but nobody is online searching for stuff.

Nobody wants your content.

Everyone has to wade through too much content as it is.

If you want to be a successful marketer, if you want to run a successful business, if you want…


Fiction

Daddy always carried a big sack of stories that he generously shared with everyone he met.

Image by Jason McBride

Downtrodden strangers and eager children alike delighted in the strange tales he pulled out of the musty canvas sack, mottled with patches.

He never told the same story twice. Each time the story he pulled out was the perfect match for the audience.

Daddy told tales about magical lands, lonely mothers, and recaptured lost loves.

He was generous with the yarns in the bag — sharing them at wakes, in line at the store, and with anyone holding a sign reading “Anything Helps”.

Somehow, the old raconteur managed to trade tales for food, rent, and even our electric bill.

After…


Do you have an archetypical story from your life?

One that foreshadows who you would become while also symbolizing who you always were?

Mine happened when I was 18-months old.

Mom thought I had swallowed a diaper pail deodorizer. This was before the days of poison control.

The pediatrician told her to give me some ipecac syrup — which apparently was something everyone had laying around in the 1970s — to get me to vomit up whatever I had swallowed.

Mom gave me some and nothing happened. The doctor told her to give me more.

Again, nothing happened.

The doctor…


They didn’t all die in a blaze of swashbuckling glory

Image licensed from Canva

I recently discovered a treasure trove of pirate obituaries. The strange thing about these death notices was that they were all written in haiku. Who knew buccaneers were such poets?

These 17-syllable obituaries paint a much different picture of pirate life than you may be used to. It turns out there were a lot of ways for a pirate to meet their end.

I have taken the liberty of poorly sketching a few of my favorite pirate obituaries on index cards.

Jason McBride

Indie Comic Artist. Haiku Poet. Storyteller. FREE newsletter http://bit.ly/weirdonewsletter

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