Hello everyone. My name is Matthew Kirshenblatt and this is my first ever Writing Blog. While I have had other online journals before this, I am both excited and somewhat daunted by the prospect of making this one. But before I go on some other kind of tangent, I’d like to go into a little more detail about myself and what I want to do here.
Up until fairly recently, I’ve been a Graduate Student at York University working for my Master’s Degree in the Humanities. I guess it might just be easier to say that I have been in school for a very long time and it will be very strange not to be after my Convocation this coming June. At the same time, I am greatly relieved to finally graduate and move on towards some other pursuits. Perhaps I’ll pursue my PhD one day, or perhaps not.
Now I’m finding that with one long-term goal no longer hanging over my head, I have another Damoclean sword to contend with: finding a job. This has forced me to make some very difficult decisions–both financially and personally–but at the same time, it poses me with enough impetus to pursue a whole variety of different possibilities.
As a writer, I have published a few stories on Gil Williamson’s Mythaxis Magazine as well participated in a few writing contests such as Dark Idol, The Friends of the Merill Collection Short Story Contest and Albedo One’s Aeon Award. Aside from these, a whole lot of Amazon comics and novel reviews, and winning first place in Zauberspiegel’s Adventurers in Hell Contest by writing a 400-word entry that sent Friedrich Nietzsche into Hell, much of my work still isn’t out there and I know that I need the means to make myself known. One of these means will be this Blog.
I mention in my site description that the title Mythic Bios created as a challenge and a promise to myself. I began this collection of creative writing sketches, vignettes, and short stories many years ago when I found myself in a creative rut. Really, I think of it as a creative space where I created–and still create–a writing laboratory for myself: a place where I could experiment with what I do.
It was at that time that I sat down and realized that I could only write about what I knew. At the same time–however–I also knew that what I didn’t know I could learn. It’s one thing to know something intellectually, but it is a whole thing to understand it on a deeply intuitive level. It’s awesome when these things line up, but it takes a lot of growing to happen and if there is one thing three years of Grad School and living on campus and downtown Toronto taught me it is closing that gap between knowledge and experience.
I’m still not done doing that, of course, but I have made a lot of progress. Which brings me back to the purpose of this Blog. I now realize that the Mythic Bios that I write for myself in various notebooks isn’t enough. I have written reviews of books that are scattered throughout Amazon, but that is also not enough. I have stories on Facebook, Mythaxis Magazine and other places but they are not unified. Moreover, I need a place to articulate my thoughts.
This Blog is going to function as all of these things and I will do my best to update it as regularly as I can: to make myself known, to find my reader-audience, to have my friends know what I am working on, and to perhaps even find new readers. I am still toggling around the settings here (I do tend to have some difficulty with technology), however please expect to see some short stories, thoughts, the occasional poem, philosophical fragment, book review and anything I find interesting enough that I want to post a link to or talk about.
So, I just want to say hello and actually begin this. I hope that whatever else, at the very least, you will be entertained.