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Ever wanted to challenge yourself artistically? Write a story every day, photograph something or illustrate something on a regular basis? John Urbancik has done that, on a grand scale: InkStains was originally a year-long daily writing project, in which he wrote a story a day every day for a year. By hand. Now, as he attempts to do this for a third time, he’ll share with you his secrets of how it’s done. Or maybe you just want to hear some of the stories that have resulted from this. InkStains is now a weekly podcast featuring stories of any and every genre as well as discussions about creativity and personal challenges and what it takes to make a thing – and the kinds of scars and stains that might leave.

Jun 20, 2018


Let's talk about characters.
What makes a good, compelling character?
Is it the color of their eyes
or the song on their lips?
Or is it something else entirely?
The most elaborate
InkStains challenge yet.
Summer of Movies continues with
The Incredibles 2,
directed by Brad Bird.
Stories about heartbreak,
a poet's death,...

Jun 13, 2018



It's time to pack up and move. Again.
As a means of rediscovering inspiration?
Spanish Lessons.
Closing the Library.
Naming Your Characters.
And the Summer of Movies continues with
How to Talk to Girls at Parties,
based on the Neil Gaiman short.
Stories this week include
breakfast in New Orleans,
the god of love in...

Jun 6, 2018


The Summer of Movies
begins with Solo: A Star Wars Movie
and this near-spoiler-free review.
Spreadsheets, dry erase boards,
index cards, sticky notes, and
other ways to organize future projects.
Stories this week include
a random stranger at gunpoint,
discussion of time as a river or city,
and a man waking up in...

May 30, 2018



To build suspense in fiction,
we look at the movies.
Psycho and The Matrix: Reloaded
and look at the motorcycle freeway chase.
We discuss conflict,
and issue a new
InkStains challenge
with multiple possibilities.
Then we talk about music,
the listening of music,
and the advantages of vinyl
over iPhone music

May 23, 2018


Our host takes a part time gig
at the movies.
Which feels like failure.
But is it?
Some thoughts on Mo*Con and
The Scares that Care Telethon.
We get into titles,
their purposes,
and how to find them.
And Summer of Movies
officially began in February.
Talk about Black Panther,
Avengers Infinity War,
and Deadpool 2,