Building The Perfect Beast

Reading, Writing, Wanderlust, and Commentary

Archive for the ‘creative process’ tag

The Making of Pulp Fiction: Quentin Tarantino’s and the Cast’s Retelling

leave a comment

I am not a huge Tarantino fan, but I have to say that, so far, this is crazy interesting reading…

It began with calls where he was just reading pages to me,’ she continues. Then came more urgent calls, asking her to join him for midnight dinners. Chen always had to pick him up, since he couldn’t drive as a result of unpaid parking tickets. She knew Tarantino was a ‘mad genius.’ He has said that his first drafts look like ‘the diaries of a madman,’ but Chen says they’re even worse. ‘His handwriting is atrocious. He’s a functional illiterate. I was averaging about 9,000 grammatical errors per page. After I would correct them, he would try to put back the errors, because he liked them.

The Making of Pulp Fiction: Quentin Tarantino’s and the Cast’s Retelling | via Vanity Fair, via DaringFireball

Written by Jeffery Battersby

February 26th, 2013 at 6:41 pm

Remember that Story Last Week?

leave a comment

The one where Nick Bolton said that you can’t create stuff on the iPad?

I started drawing on an iPhone at the beginning of 2009, and, at the time, I liked being able to work so small. I got so used to the size that the first time I used the iPad, it felt like I had a pinball machine in front of me. In time, however, I became more proficient on the tablet and started using more lines and more detail. To the point that now, it feels primitive indeed to draw on the iPhone.

Mmmhmm… Wait, what? He was creating content on an iPhone too?

Jorge Colombo’s iPad Finger Paintings | via

Written by Jeffery Battersby

February 5th, 2013 at 11:03 am

Posted in Asides

Tagged with , ,

Speaking of Creativity…

leave a comment

A great article in Slate bout Cormac McCarthy and what went on behind the scenes in the creation of Blood Meridian. Not from interviews with McCarthy, but distilled from the drafts of his work.

There is a bit in this that mirrors the creative process highlighted in the Seinfeld interview.

It’s easy to forget that McCarthy is blood and bones. We often fall into the trap of thinking about artists, particularly the reclusive ones, as single-minded and stoic. But releasing your personal papers is, invariably, an exercise in vulnerability—and there are moments of it in McCarthy’s notes. In a letter sent around 1979, he told a close friend that he had not touched the Blood Meridian manuscript in six months out of frustration. In his notebooks he searched for inspiration, jotting down quotes from William James, Joseph Heller, Lord Byron, Martin Luther King Jr., Flaubert, and Wagner. And he was certainly not immune to bad ideas: Early on he fancied Blood Meridian to include period prints, mainly lithographs and woodcuts, illustrating the gang’s Western journey.

Work. No matter who you are, the creative process is work. And sometimes you have to fight your way through until you come up with something you love. Or at least like enough to release it into the world.

Cormac McCarthy’s Blood Meridian: Early drafts and history | via

Written by Jeffery Battersby

December 20th, 2012 at 11:43 am

Jerry Seinfeld Intends to Die Standing Up

leave a comment

Great article and video in the Times about Jerry Seinfeld and the creative process. The video is worth the time, but this little bit sums much of it up. Continuous work and continuous reworking until everything is insanely great.

Perhaps he’s the Steve Jobs of the Comedy world.

For Seinfeld, whose worth Forbes estimated in 2010 to be $800 million, his touring regimen is a function not of financial necessity but rather of borderline monomania — a creative itch he can’t scratch. “I like money,” he says, “but it’s never been about the money.” Seinfeld will nurse a single joke for years, amending, abridging and reworking it incrementally, to get the thing just so. “It’s similar to calligraphy or samurai,” he says. “I want to make cricket cages. You know those Japanese cricket cages? Tiny, with the doors? That’s it for me: solitude and precision, refining a tiny thing for the sake of it.”

Jerry Seinfeld Intends to Die Standing Up | via

Written by Jeffery Battersby

December 20th, 2012 at 11:17 am

The Agony and the Ecstasy of WWDC « carpeaqua by Justin Williams

leave a comment

Justin Williams on how it can sometimes feel to be a developer listening to the WWDC keynote:

WWDC keynotes take a different turn when you transition from being an Apple user or fan to an Apple platform developer. About 70% of those ninety minutes watching Steve Jobs on stage are spent being excited what direction Apple is planning to take the Mac and iOS over the next year. The other 30% is that cautious concern that what is next on the agenda is going to put your product out of business.

I’m not a developer, so I don’t really feel his pain, but I will say that, just as I never took much of a shine to Apple’s RSS feed reader in Safari, I’ll be surprised to find myself trading in Instapaper for Safari’s new Reading List feature.

Marco Arment, the creator of Instapaper, I think, sees this issue in the proper light:

Today, fewer than 1% of iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch owners are Instapaper customers, despite Instapaper spending a lot of time (including today) at the #1-paid-app spot in the App Store’s News category for both iPhone and iPad. The potential market is massive, but most people don’t know that they need it yet.

The reality of the matter is that Safari’s Reading list is more likely to point users in the direction of really excellent, beautifully designed programs. Reading List, as Arment implies, is really more likely to see that they have a need for something that they never really knew that they had a need for.

For me, the non-developer, I’ll take the innovation. I hope that developers take the same cue, and continue to innovate more.

Written by Jeffery Battersby

June 7th, 2011 at 2:44 pm

Elizabeth Gilbert On Genius

leave a comment

Just picked up the very cool TED app from the app store and had the opportunity to check out Elizabeth Gilbert’s talk on genius. I’ve never read any of Elizabeth Gilbert’s books, but what she says about the creative process is excellent.

If you don’t have an iPhone or iPod Touch you can watch the video on the site via the link above.

Written by Jeffery Battersby

February 11th, 2009 at 10:14 am