The most common mistake I see in the work of young writers is what I call “lack of blocking”. Blocking, as you may know, is the process of placing actors on a stage so that the action and dialogue are clearly visible to the audience, or the camera. Without blocking, you get what you often get in “reality television”: a great shot of someone’s back as he says or does something.
The equivalent of that for a writer is to neglect important details. One minute, our heroes are in a submarine; the next, they are on an airplane. How did they get there? A new character speaks up — but how did he arrive on the scene? Recently, my successor at TTAC wrote en entire post about his plans for TTAC without mentioning the fact that he was taking the reins as the site’s Managing Editor. Without that critical piece of information, later added in a helpful bracket at the head of text, the editorial didn’t make a lot of sense.
With that in mind, let’s make explicit what many of you have already guessed from looking at this site’s new layout:
* This website, which previously featured my work and a smattering of guest posts, is now a joint website.
* My partner in this joint website is “Bark M”.
* “Bark M” is my younger brother, who writes for Jalopnik and TTAC.
* There are two URLs that will work for this site in the foreseeable future: jackbaruth.com and jackandbark.com.
* There will still be guest posts, and they will be identified as such.
* The author byline of each post will clearly state “Jack Baruth” or “Bark M” so you know who is who.
* We are brothers, born in 1971 and 1977. We agree on many things. But we also disagree on many things.
* So don’t blame him for my hippie-dippy pan-theistic musings…
* …and don’t blame me when Bark says that “Nickel Creek” sucks.
I’m excited about the merging of the sites. I think it will increase our posting rate, I think it will give the two of us a chance to have some reasonably interesting dialogue on a variety of topics, and I think it will keep my mother from having to memorize two web addresses.
What this will probably not do is ease the confusion of people in the automotive business who think that Bark and I are the same person. For those people, a brief recap:
* The older brother
* 6’2″, 246lbs
* Long hair, beard, vaguely Leon-Russell-esque appearance and demeanor
* Raced BMX from 1986-2003
* Plays guitar, badly
* Terrible autocrosser
* Has raced with NASA, Skip Barber, Grand-Am, B-Spec, AER, Lemons, ChumpCar, WRL
* Social conservative, fiscal populist, encourages the overthrow of the current system
* Enjoys long walks on the beach and holding hands, with your wife.
* The younger brother
* 5’9″, 165lbs
* Curly hair
* Raced BMX from 1986-1988
* State championship wide receiver
* State championship 4×400 (I think)
* Gus Macker tournament winner
* Tours internationally as a saxophonist
* Has appeared on multiple recordings on different labels
* Wrote and performed this cd that you can buy from KMart!
* Has toured with a winner of the International Blues Challenge
* SCCA National Solo trophy winner
* Races with LeMons and AER, with WRL to come
* Social conservative, fiscal conservative, former deacon of a church
* Does not own any Pat Metheny records
* Once thought that he could escape being held accountable for something by reversing the first letter of his first and last name
I think that covers it. As always, thank you for visiting and reading.