We have been sitting at this godforsaken desk all damn day, staring at the blank white spaces and wondering when little squiggly lines will fall from heaven (or bubble up from hell) and choke this terrible emptiness. We have drunk all the liquor in the place, have had the kettle steaming for nearly seven hours, have let all the old tales race through our terrible putrefied brain so many times we may soon vomit until there is nothing left but the skeletal framework. . . .

This is here more for us than it is for you, but you may take something away from it if the hatches of your brain are open and ready to receive the world. And they should be. If they are not, then what in god’s name are you doing here, you beast?

Anyway, a little Hemingway to throw into the mind’s fire:

The most essential gift for a good writer is a built-in, shock-proof, shit detector. This is the writer’s radar and all great writers have had it.

Now, we put hands to keys—silent ones, damn them; no clacking at all—and perhaps a story will emerge from this godless pollution.

Mother and Father, forgive us.

And to the Oakland Police Department, we have just five words for you: It was not an accident.