#2 RL Newsletter

things, things, and more things

Hey it's Rowan,

Welcome back, and thanks for subscribing. I hope you like this new look, I know it's minor, but the addition of the banner image makes me real happy 😊

September has passed, and October (and subsequently sp00ky szn) is upon us!

Update on how I'm doing: pretty bad. I keep randomly crying (or almost crying), which seems to be a direct correlation with how I'm refusing to deal with many of my problems. Issues "at home," as I would describe similar events in grade school, are leaving me feeling very hurt and scared. It'll take a lot for me to open up again like I have (due to sensitive information being shared that was then used to simply and only hurt my feelings (this is my perspective, I am not being diplomatic)). I want things to be better, I want to be better, but I would be really grateful for reparations.


I'm always struggling with this concept. That I need to have something perfect before I show it to someone, especially before I finish it. I think I mentioned this last week or so; I want to write about more niche and specific topics on my medium page, but I'm having difficulty with deciding to write about a subject I do not know every little thing about. I do not have a specific example in mind but the general idea is this: how can I write exhaustively about a topic without proper and conclusive research to back up any sort of claim I might make. If it's about music then I would like to have examples of how the artist's influences have affected their sound (research required), if it's about a book I would like to look into the bigger meanings, themes, and motifs behind the writing to best illustrate the effect the piece had on me (research required). Movies, the same situation, and any sort of thing I would write about I would feel the pressure to have every base covered, every fact-checked, and every corner of influence referenced. This pressure comes from multiple factors: 1) cancel culture, what if I offend or misrepresent someone; 2) past mistakes, one could say to learn from them but I am simply afraid to make a fool of myself, I once really struggling with the review of a product and would default to simply summarizing an entire movie or book; I remember freshman year of high school really struggling with the deeper part of the analysis when it came to specifically Lord of The Flies. In spite of these notes here I have two book reviews published on my Goodreads profile last week!

The first of which was Collaborative Futures by like fifteen different authors. This book was originally written during a book sprint of five days where five writers, a programmer, and a facilitator sat down to write a book. After initial publication, it was released online as a living document and now has accrued an unknowable amount of authorship being able to be republished anywhere on the web with any sort of revisions or additions to the book. The book serves as a sort of exposé on collaboration and the many facets that that can cover. Here is my review as choppy and incoherent as the book can seem at times:

This book was an interesting read, and if you're present on the internet past when it originally came out, I believe it might be redundant. The prospect of creating a book to serve as a public account, an ever-evolving edition of the public's belief of collaboration, was a triumph at the time and still seems like quite the accomplishment. The chapters will be so self-aware and aware of the finished product, more than you are, so it can make the reading process and bit strenuous. Good ideas are rampant and are more of a collection of other materials focusing around the central theme the book brings to light. That of Collaborative Futures.

As a creative myself, I fell in love with the idea to sit down with a bunch of my friends and try and shove out a book from our collective consciousness. If anyone wants to do something like this, hit me up. The aspect of nonfiction helps this book jump around as it does; creating a collective work on fiction could see to be difficult but equally as intriguing, if not more so.

This book can be found free online and to be further collaborated on on flossmanuals.net.

p.s. I know this review is hard to read. It was a collaboration between me, myself, and I.

In addition, I read the book Steal Like An Artist by Austin Kleon this is just straight up my review from Goodreads:

One of the more important books I've ever read. Really helped me see the impact of the creative process. Steal Like an Artist is filled with inspiring sentiments and quotes to get you thinking about how necessary it really is to be what you might have tricked yourself into believing is 'original.'

I'd recommend this book to any creative person. Which, if we're being honest, is everyone. This book teaches you not to just steal like an artist but to treat yourself like one.

Sexy-sex time 🙄

I really irk myself sometimes. I've been listening to the Rhett and Link's podcast Ear Biscuits and during the last month and ending today, they are talking about sex, specifically their monogamous, Super Christian, cis white male experience with sex. Hearing them talk about masturbation, to the deed, to guilt within the church, has been really eye-opening at times but also, at times made me feel uncomfortable. I'm nervous to talk about specifics and I'm so fucking sensitive and I hate it.

Things to check out this week:


  • I haven't been jamming too much this week but I have been listening to the band Big Thief, any and all their music is great and cohesive which I admire. Their song Not is one of my favorites.

  • Another music thing, but mainly a work thing, is the Spotify "show" called Flow State. It's a podcast comprised of 30-minute instrumental music and then 5 minutes of this dude talking. The songs are really good, nearly all electronic but ranging in ambiance. The higher tempo ones can really get me in the groove of whatever I'm working on. I usually skip his parts, partially due to workaholism and partly due to him being kind of annoying to listen to. He sometimes has bits from books which is neat though.


What I've got for ya:

I'm live streaming!

  • After getting off work one day I decided I would stream on my Twitch channel. The game, Legend of Zelda: Breath of The Wild (BoTW), after about 20 minutes of technical difficulties I finally got the stream to work and streamed for about an hour last Friday morning. But sadly, after reviewing the footage, the audio is pretty fucked. My computer fan is going Mach 10 nearly drowning out my already shallow voice. You can watch this disaster on the Gamer's Wishbone YouTube channel. Next stream we will have learned (hopefully). I'll be streaming live on Twitch tomorrow morning (that's Tuesday, Oct 5th at around 6 am MTN) twitch.tv/rowanliven!

New art series!

  • With the start of October and spooky seazon, on the ol' art Instagram we've got 31 days of Inktober; doing prompted drawings provided by some overlord I guess, I don't really know. But make sure to check in on that every day so you get to see some neat-o drawings.


  1. Being hurt by someone you love is never fun, easy, or nice, but that doesn't mean you can't still lead with kindness. Give someone a compliment today or tell someone who doesn't hear it from you how much you care about them.

  2. Being perfect doesn't matter when no one’s watching. And when you've got eyes it still doesn't matter. Learning out loud is inspiring and should be more acceptable.

  3. Let me know what's on your mind in the comments below, or dm me on anything.

Thanks for reading :)

Share rowan livengood: newsletter