Many people register success (in writing, in life) by money and awards. Many people believe things I don't. I try not to hold it against them when they tell me this.
I don't use other people to measure success. Sure, I like it when other people say nice things and give me shit... but who doesn't like that? (Though there's this rumour going round that I don't deal with people saying nice things to me real well. Who started that? I like nice things. Tell me I'm pretty.) But people are people and if you want to keep sane, you'll take the money and whatever, and try not to think about it. Same goes for negative things. I don't dismiss negative comments, but you got to be someone in my life for me to listen to that shit. So: that leaves the question, how do you measure success? Well, I keep it simple: I have a little pot plant in the corner of the veranda. It's coloured orange and red when it flowers, and green and brown when it doesn't. A little society of green flesh and brown blooded humanoids live in the soil. They once built an ugly statue of me. You can't win, I guess. Still, every day I go out, water the plant, move it into some sun, check the soil, maybe break up a dried apricot for the little people living there. I figure if they're all alive in the morning and still doing things they like, then I'm successful. The day I walk out and everything is dead, that's the day I know I failed.
The best death in terms of "Fucking hell, that's one way to die," belongs to a pair of men in Germany. The man who died (for only one of them did) was named Bernd-Jurgen Brandes. He wanted another man to slice deeply into his flesh, to cut a piece off, and cook it up. Then he wanted the man cutting into him to eat his cooked flesh with strong, yellowed by cigarettes and coffee teeth, and swallow so that the meat ended up in his stomach. It would be digested. Broken down. Dissolved. It would become part of the eater. It could be argued that it was a perverted oral sex fantasy, taken beyond the fun confines of the argument of spitting or swallowing for love, dear.
The man cutting into him was also German, but named Armin Meiwes. He had a fantasy about consuming a man, about having that individual in his stomach much like a mother does when she finds out that she is pregnant, only he believed that there would be no pain, and that the man's soul would be forever linked to his. The perverted mother instinct, warped through his subconscious for reasons I can't even begin to understand. Still, he was (and is) a polite man, amenable to the suggestions of the Brandes, and so he chopped off the other man's penis and flambéed it, and then the two ate it together.
Shortly after, Brandes died, and Meiwes kept eating. Both men participated willingly.
I didn't make a word of that up.
(I am answering thirty questions. I think it's gotten out of hand, but it's funny. Anyhow, all the previous rules and such have been chucked. Ask anything, leave a word, a link, whatever. It'll be turned into one of these.)