On Writing As Art
Creation is the act of bringing one’s vision to life in one or more mediums. Art is an act of creation. Art is visionary. Writing is art.
The founder of AetherBound Creatives acknowledges writing as a fundamental act of creation and acknowledges that writing is art. It is creative in that it takes something that did not exist before, and brings it into being. It is art in that it does so in a way that is wholly unique to the writer — the artist. You can give ten people the same idea, and, left to their own devices, they will find ten different ways to use that idea to create.
The concept behind AetherBound Creatives is that the artistry and vision that comes from a writer should not need to be compromised. It should be able to remain that artist’s vision. It can be refined… the edges polished… the flaws smoothed. But a writer’s vision should not be compromised by trying to fit that creation into an artificially created box — a niche in which it may rest uncomfortably at best. And a writer should not have to compromise hir vision out of fear that there is no place for hir in the world of authors and that the beauty and value of hir work will not be recognized by -someone-. That the effort will go unnoticed and unappreciated in the clamor of the Writing World.
On Electronic Media
AetherBound Creatives is an electronic media publishing cooperative. We only handle electronic publication.
The world is faster now, space is more dear. Resources are more precious. Electronic publication is the best of both worlds. It is an environmentally sound medium that allows readers to have all of the benefits of the written word with the advantages of convenient, quick, and near-universal access to the works of readers and writers.
For writers, electronic publication offers the advantage of reduced resources and overhead as well, in addition to access to readers across a broad and diverse range of locations, language-barriers, and accessibility needs.
It is for this reason that AetherBound Creatives has chosen to fully embrace electronic publication without hesitation and holding nothing back. Our authors hold full rights to their work and are encouraged to seek out hard-copy publication if they choose to go that route.
AetherBound Creatives believes that the cruelest thing you can do to an artist is to force that artist to have to choose between being able to market the creations that have been carefully wrought or to be able to hold on to the rights to own the creation that xhe has so carefully created. We believe that beneath everything, an artist’s work is hir own magic… hir own power… spilled out into a concrete form for others to enjoy. AetherBound would no more steal ownership of another’s creative work by holding those rights hostage to the desire to share those words with readers than literally steal by plagiarization.
On the Power of Communal Action
When we act alone, we struggle. Human beings are meant to work together to achieve our best goals. Introvert, Extrovert — those are labels that society places on us to make us feel unworthy to help one another. Yes, we all have different skillsets, but the point of AetherBound Collectives is to work together as a community to overcome the challenges of our natures and to exploit the advantages of our natures for shared benefit. If people work together, looking out for one another and offering a hand up to the ones reaching out for help and offering a stable foundation and safety net for those who are charging ahead and breaking new ground, then we allow ALL of us to take more risks, take on greater challenges, and strive for bigger things, because we KNOW that we are not doing it alone.
But AetherBound Creatives is also about shared work. In order to be able to function this way, everyone has to contribute something. We all have to throw something into the common pot, or there is no soup. This isn’t a place to come to get a hand held or a pat on the back and give nothing back to the community. This isn’t a place to use just to make a name for yourself and then forget where you came from. This is a community that works together and works HARD. It is an investment. It is a labor of love. It is more than a tool — it is a community. And when we act in our mutual best interests, we all have a chance to benefit from the nature of community. If we only think about ourselves, then we fail not only ourselves but the greater readership and greater art community that we strive to profit from.
On Books, Television, and Movies
Everything on television and movies started with writers telling stories. The difference for those who read is that they get to create, in their own way, right along with the writer who has poured hir world out onto a page. The reader gets to create the vision of what the people, places, and things described in those books look like, through the wonder of their own mind’s eye, which gives them a small taste of creativity.
Television and movies are passive. They don’t require anything from the consumer except to sit there and consume. They don’t require that sense of shared creativity — of building worlds in your mind, along with the writer who has given you the words that are the building blocks of that creation. Passive entertainment makes for passive people. There are those who want a civilization that has become passive and dependent on being told how things ‘should’ be. We at AetherBound Creatives are not those people. We want to encourage creativity. We want to encourage imagination and daydreams and hopes and wishes and wonder. We want to create, and put our creations in the hands of those who will share that creativity and grow in their own creativity out of what we have worked so long and so hard on.
On Life, Liberty, The Pursuit of Happiness, and on Revolutionary Ideas
Writers have always had revolutionary ideas. They’ve always been on the cutting edge of the status quo. They’ve entertained and, at the same time, they’ve taught people to desire, to hope, to dream. Writers let us want more. They let us see further than what is right in front of our eyes. They let us dream. Because of that, writers are revolutionaries.
The Pen is Mightier Than The Sword — Edward Bulwer-Lytton
This phrase has a weight to it. A texture. A substance. It says that there will be things spoken of that are powerful, uncomfortable, and even outrageous by society’s standards.
There is a HUGE responsibility where so much power lies. In the shadow of that responsibility are the decisions about what kind of work is suitable for a creative community like AetherBound Creatives. So here is our vision in regards to all things born of dissent.
First, Context is Everything. Each work that comes into the Collective, whether it is coming in to be looked over by our Writer’s Group, gone over by the editors who participate with us, go out to our alpha and beta readers, will be judged on the context of the story. We’ve taken to this idea that certain words, terms, phrases, and ideas are, somehow, seditious or wrong, all on their own — but in writing, the voice of the speaker of the tale and those whom xhe surrounds hirself with are the critical voices.
Second, we will not allow those who write overtly hateful work simply for the purpose of spreading hate a place in our community. This is not because we wish to stifle what they have to say. Rather, it is because it is IMPOSSIBLE for a community to work if we do not trust one another, and those who live to spread hate cannot be trusted. Therefore, they will never be able to find a fit here among such a diverse community. There will always be friction between the hater and the group that he or she hates, which will impede the community’s ability to lift one another up and be supportive of one another.
How do we decide whether something is contextually necessary or just hate for hate’s sake? Well, first, we count on the community to bring things to the attention of the leadership of the community. There will be a place set aside for items like that to be placed and discussed. In the end, though, it will be the decision of the community leader(s) whether controversial items in a work are contextually important or whether they are designed for nothing other than to promote hatred. Pieces that are produced with a clear intent to spread hatred will be rejected, and the submission of more than one of such pieces to the group for consideration will result in the individual in question being told that there is no place for them this community
What about other controversial things like sexual content or different forms of love?
Again, context is everything, but the truth is, even explicit sexuality and alternative sexual expression have a place in good storytelling and have a readership that enjoys those things. We will have a section specifically for certain areas that are considered geared to those who enjoy such work. Those who participate in this area will need to be over the age of 18, in order to assure that we comply with local laws, but beyond that, this area will be open to developing works that are creative on topics that are more explicit, more violent, more bloodthirsty, more erotic, and/or more fringe than is considered common in our culture. These materials are NOT in the same category as hate-promotion. They are an act of creation, are welcome in our community, and those who create such things will be treated as full members of the community, and as artists in their own right, whether someone likes their art or not. You do not have to like someone’s expression to acknowledge that they are artists. But you do have to be mature and capable of dignity, respect, and compassion — and we demand all of those attributes in those who participate here.
On Essential Humanity
Everything — creativity, trust, cooperation — depends on our humanity. Our mortality is the font of our desire to create, and our striving to understand our world. This is a universal constant. All other differences can fall away if we focus on our common need to leave a resonance behind when we leave this life. Because of this, and because our creativity is fueled by our experiences and perceptions of our world, AetherBound Creatives welcomes voices from the diverse landscape of human existence.
We expect our authors to work with one another with respect for one another’s experience, but without allowing those experiences to limit our ability to work together for something bigger, greater, and more inclusive than we have had. AetherBound strives, in its small way, to be a microcosm of a world where it is not our differences that define us, but our similarities.