From International Viewpoints (IVy) Issue 11 - April 1993
See Home Page at http://www.ivymag.org/
Writing and Auditing
by Frank Gordon, USA
Ron was born in 1911, and turned 18 in 1929, the year of the crash.
The difficult depression years following can be seen as incubating
the philosophy of 'Survive!' in its simplest and most naked
form. Making a living as an author is not easy during the best of
times, and the 1930s were not the best of times.
The Need to Survive
One sci-fi author(1),
a contemporary of Ron's, relates in his autobiography 'The Pulp
Jungle' how he managed to eat during those times in New York. He
would enter an automat, get some hot-water, ketchup, and crackers,
which were all free, and make himself a tasty tomato soup. An
example of 'Survive!'.
Fiction as a Touch Assist
There are several attitudes that a writer must have, which can carry
over into auditing. In a very real sense, writing is what 'you
can get away with', what the reader or pc will accept and enjoy.
From the reader's viewpoint the writer is giving him a touch assist,
one that mildly restimulates his pain and upset. The hero can be
like him, but not too much. The fictional environment can be
but not too close to home. Hong Kong, perhaps.
So the author provides a carefully calculated aesthetic distance.
As an example of the need for this, I doubt very much if you have
read a story which goes into the details of diarrhea.
In my case, I found I did not enjoy reading 'Moby Dick' while
at sea on a tanker. It only made my sea-sickness worse, and I waited
until I was on solid ground before finally finishing it.
The reader wants to view himself as a good and brave hero who is up
against the wiles of various villains, including perhaps, even his
wife. And he may enjoy help in harmlessly fantasizing some of his
1.1 hostilities. In the old (10 cents!) 'Detective Fiction Weekly'
there were many stories in which one spouse ingeniously disposed of
his/her partner (or tried to), only to be caught by some simple
These painful areas (and aspirations) needing a touch assist must
be delicately titillated or restimulated so as to draw the reader
into the world which the writer has created. As one article on writing
titled it, 'The Lure and the Hook'. The reader must be lured
into the story and then hooked on finding out what happened. Thus
the term 'a page turner'. It could also be called a 'mystery
'How is Joe going to get out of this one, when each thing he tries
simply makes things worse!'
Common Elements of writing and Auditing
These elements are discussed in Jack Woodford's 'How to Have a
Brain-Child', a manual for the would-be author. He speaks of the
amateur's tendency to resolve conflict too quickly without drawing
out the drama. A good author (paid by the word) must hold and build
the tension as long as possible.
Auditing parallels are inventing problems of comparable or
magnitude (NOT immediately solving the current problem as the
amateur writer does). 'Think of something worse than a bad foot',
and mocking up 'orrible fates' (terrible futures).
If one wished a process to parallel a common and popular pulp fiction
formula, it might be: 'Give me a solution to that problem that
will actually make it worse.' This is similar to Ron's view (a
writer's one) that it is better to think 'How can I get into things'
rather than 'How can I get out of things', and is reflected
in his proposed epitaph for the earth on one his tapes: 'They
wanted to stay out the trouble!'.
I had an opportunity to observe one writer's method of 'making
something worse' when I attended a talk by Stephen King at
the local State Hospital. After the talk, I presented him with a copy
of 'The Way To Happiness', and he looked at it, then turned to
the group and asked in a timid, frightened voice, 'Could someone
please show me the way out?' This gave me some idea how he gets
his plots. He goes around thinking up ways to frighten himself.
In the necessary 'tolerance of confusion' of scn axiom 54(2),
we have a recognition
of the need for an ability to let tension persist and, if desired,
make it worse. A question one might ask either an aspiring writer
or a pc is: 'How could you cause that problem to continue?'.
As an editor builds a stable of writers, so a writer builds up fans.
And once he has loyal fans for his particular genre, he knows
what they want and will continue to want. If they want an endless
stairway to some kind of heaven, that, of couse, is what they must
get if he wishes to be successful.
Successful writing also must carefully tread on the edge of the
acceptable and gently touch commonly held missed withholds. A good
and financially successful writer knows what he can 'get away
with' in culturally tabooed areas. This is a matter of skill and
knowing where restim is pleasurable but not yet painful.
Ron gives an example of this with his falsely smiling old man (he
had false teeth) saying to a girl, 'I see you like dogs',
on SHSBC tape 206, 'The Missed Missed Withhold' (6211C01).
You will have noted, I am sure, that the listeners did not respond
with a chilly silence, but with laughter. It is the mark of a good
writer and Auditor that he can so delicately tread on the topic
The Writer as Operating Thetan
To sum up, writing is creative processing of the reader where the
author presents fictional solutions to those difficulties (lovingly
and technically augmented) which he shares with the reader.
A writer creates a fictional world in which life is what he
makes it, and thus he becomes a high-level OT within the bounds of
his own created universe.
(1)Frank Gruber in 'The Pulp Jungle'. Jon Atack
refers to Gruber's other stories about Ron in A ' Piece of Blue
Sky' on p.64. Sci-Fi in the 50's was often about one man (with
abilities or advanced tech) against a planet. See A.E. Van Vogt's
Slan (reviewed in IVy 6 p. 28), Eric Frank Russell's
Wasp, or LRH's 'Ole Doc Methuselah', DAW Book (pbk) 1970.
A tolerance of confusion and an agreed-upon stable datum on which
to align the data in a confusion are at once necessary for a sane
reaction on the eight dynamics. This defines sanity.
Tue Jul 11 19:00:08 EDT 2006