Saddle Up Saloon; Howdy Clark Farley!

Written by D. Avery @shiftnshake

       Read my writing and see my books at

April 12, 2021

“Kid, who’s thet feller jist come in? I don’t think he’s from aroun’ here.”

“Well, I’ll be a six sentence gun-of-a-son. That’s Clark Farley.”

“Some sorta writer, Kid?”

“Some sort fer sure. Thinkin’ he might be sortin’ it out. Let’s talk to ‘im. Howdy Clark! Welcome ta the Saddle Up Saloon.”

“Well are ya er ain’tcha?”


“Wondrin’, are ya er ain’tcha a writer?”

“Well, I have written a Six Sentence Story every week since sometime in July 2015. Six Sentences is where I met your writer.”


“Easy, Kid, ya know it ain’t never been a ‘sclusive relationship. Writers kin carry on with all sorts a dif’rent characters an’ dif’rent blog hops. Wouldn’t ya say, Clark?”

“Ahem, well yes. As I have a first class jones for serial stories, I have a large number of characters at any one time.”

“Yer a serial writer? Seriously?”

“Yes, I have concurrent stories. Of late I’ve written Six Sentence Stories as installments of two serial stories, ‘The Whitechapel Interlude’ and ‘The Case of the Missing Fig Leaf’.”

“Six Sentence Stories agin… what d’ya injoy most ‘bout Six Sentence Stories?”

“They happen every week! Interestingly enough, most of my novel length stories, such as ‘Almira’ began as a Six Sentence Story.”

“Ain’t surprisin’. Ever’ acorn contains a tree.”

“Our writer’s grown some stories there. She say’s yer a hoot ta write with, Clark. D’ya participate in any other blog hops er writin’ prompts?”

“Yes. The TToT (Ten Things of Thankful) and, until relatively recently, Finish the Sentence Friday.”

“Them story lines a yers, all them characters… got favorites?”

“My favorite right now is Almira and ‘The Case of the Missing Starr’.”

“Why thet one?”

“The characters became real enough to tell me the story. I listened and typed.”

“Yep, we kin relate ta that. Some of us fictional characters make it real easy fer our writers. Think sometimes we work harder an’ you know who. We run a saloon an’ never git a chance ta set an’ injoy a bev’rage.”

“Shush, Kid, this ain’t ‘bout you. Clark, ya said ya been writin’ Six Sentence Stories an’ even growin’ some of ‘em inta novel length stories. Thet’s some word wranglin’ right there. What d’ya find most challengin’ ‘bout writin’?

“Starting. Writing isn’t hard, starting the process on any given day, very much can be. I wish I’d been the one to originally say, ‘I love having written’.”

“Well it soun’s like yer givin’ it a good go, writin’. Which come first, the writin’ er the bloggin’?”

“I’d say I’m a blogger first.  I’ve been blogging since June 2009. My lack of skills prompted me to write, as immersing myself in a story is a painless way to practice.”

“Kin ya tell us more ‘bout yer blog?”

“Thought you’d never ask, Pal. The Wakefield Doctrine (the theory of clarks, scotts and rogers) is a perspective on the world and the people who make it up. The Doctrine has proven to be remarkably predictive, coherent, useful and fun. The core idea is determining how a person relates themselves to the world around them, i.e., as an Outsider, a Predator or a Herd Member, allowing a body to know way more about a person than one might imagine.”

“This like one a them personality profiles?”

“I suppose, or an insight into your personal reality. The core premise of the Wakefield Doctrine is that we are, all of us, born with the potential to experience the world as any of the three. At a very early age we settle into one (and only one) and grow and develop our social strategies, coping mechanisms, quirks and picadilloes, aka personalities. While we have only one ‘predominant worldview’ we never lose the potential of ‘the other two’. Sometimes our secondary or tertiary aspect is significant.  The Doctrine is concerned with the character of the relationship between the individual and the world around them. For reasons best labeled serendipitous, the three categories of Outsider(clarks), Predators(scotts) and Herd Members(rogers) yields a degree (and quality) of insight into a person that is, kinda, impressive.”

“That’s some deep shift. Yer no ordinary writer! If yer blog is ta do with this theory of clarks, scotts, and rogers, what’s yer bloggin’ goals?”

“Why, to write the perfect Wakefield Doctrine post.”

“Now I’m wunnerin’ if thet doctrine a yers heps yer writin’.”

“The Wakefield Doctrine is grounded in the notion of three ways a person can relate themselves to the world around them, as would an Outsider (clarks), a Predator(scotts) or a Herd Member(rogers). For unknown reasons, the characteristics of the experience of the world (and the people who make it up) from these ‘worldviews’, is totally on the mark. The three worldviews are gender, age, and culture neutral. If you said, ‘Hey! A clark, a scott and a roger are all in a car approaching a (very) recent traffic accident, how would each behave?’, it wouldn’t matter whether they were male or female or old or young or Romanian. They would, beneath the external shape of behavior, respond like Outsiders or Predators or Herd Members.

So, for writing, especially cross-gender (i.e. male author writing a female or female writing male character) there is possible a fundamental accuracy in predicting responses and reactions to novel situations.”

 “Huh. Might have ta study up on thet.”

“Clark, d’ya find it at all odd to be innerviewed by fictional ranch hands from a virtual word wrangling ranch?”

“Have you read any of my writings? Lol… no, serially, some of my best friends are virtual.”

“Ya sure got a passel a characters in yer varied stories, Clark. Do ya have fav’rites?

“They’re all my favorites.”

“Which a them’s most likely to sit up at the bar here an’ injoy a beverage?”

“I think that’s depend on what is going on in their ‘lives’ or, narrative permitting, what they believe is happening in their respective worlds.”

“Well don’t look now, but I think one a them jist walked in.”

“Ian Devereaux! What are you doing here?”

“I could ask you the same, Clark. What, you’d rather be here with hayseeds in a saloon than with me at the Bottom of the Sea Strip Club and Lounge?”

“If you must know, these characters are interviewing me. But don’t worry, I haven’t forgotten your serial Ian.”

“Me, I’m just searching for a reason for it all. But, please, don’t tell my client, she thinks I’m trying to find her ex-husband’s murderer. Funny thing about missing persons… figuring out the ‘why’ is way more useful than the ‘where’. Everyone’s got a where.”

“Jeez, Ian, yer so Guy Noir!”

“And more, Pal. I have to go now… Mysteries to solve. Don’t mind the heel-clickin…kinda want to get back through the right door. ”

“Uh, yeah.”

“That shouldn’t be considered a judgement on your existence. As imaginary settings go, you got yourself quite the nice gig here. Only one way in, a thousand backdoors, and the help are working for love not money.”

“Ya got thet right. Good luck with yer case, Mr. Devereaux. An’ Clark, it was real good gittin’ ta know ya an’ show ya off here at the Saddle Up Saloon.”

“Yep, we wish ya luck with all yer writin’ Mr. Farley. Mebbe you’ll try a Carrot Ranch flash challenge one a these days, 99 words, no more no less. Yer sure ta recognize some a the ranchers that come by.”

“The pleasure’s been all mine Kid and Pal.”

“Well Kid, thet Clark Farley was quite a character.”

“No, Pal, he’s real. Ian was the character. One a many.”

“What I meant was— oh, never mind. Hey Kid, I think the mic is still on.”

“Oh shift, not again, here I’ll jist

Clark Farley can be found on his entertaining and interesting site, The Wakefield Doctrine. In addition to his fun stories and serials, Clark is one of the most asterisking commenters out there. One of the three gentlemen in the photo is not only a clark, but is the Clark.

If asked, Pal & Kid will deny that they spill from the pen of D. Avery. They claim to be free ranging characters who live and work at Carrot Ranch and now serve up something more or less fresh every Monday at the Saddle Up Saloon. If you or your characters are interested in saddling up to take the stage as a saloon guest, contact them via

You May Also Like…

Taking a Break to Rebuild

Taking a Break to Rebuild

Hey Carrot Ranchers! While the relocation of was successful, it's become more of a muddy mess than I...

2023 KIAW Virtual Tour

2023 KIAW Virtual Tour

Years in the making, the first Keweenaw Interactive Art Walk took place on Saturday, September 30. We couldn't have...

Virtual Art Walk

Virtual Art Walk

We are almost ready to go live on the Keweenaw Peninsula with the Keweenaw Interactive Art Walk. If you can't make it...


  1. Rebecca Glaessner Author

    Fascinating way to look at character! I love being able to boil them down to universal basics. I have to go take a peek at Clark’s website now. Thanks for yet another witty and insightful interview Kid and Pal!

    • Rebecca Glaessner Author

      *raises hand* I’m definitely a “Clark”. My WIP is based around an alien world that prioritises knowledge above all else. I particularly liked that last line: “Clark’s can believe in anything and therefore believe nothing”. It’s fascinating how you surmise that a Roger who is sometimes a Clark, is definitely a Roger because an actual Clark wouldn’t ever feel like a Roger. I’m looking forward to applying the theories of your Doctrine to my WIP’s character profiles.

      • clark

        Thank you, Rebecca, for the kind words*

        One of the fun ‘tests’ for personality types is to ask a person which of the following responses to a question they agree with:

        How much is 2 + 2?

        a roger will always answer (with only a slight tone of being offended) “Four”
        a clark’s answer, “In what context?”
        a scott will usually laugh (if they like you) or look around suspiciously (if they don’t)

        also, the Doctrine maintains we have one predominant worldview but never lose the capacity to experience the world as do the other two

        *my condolences for discovering that your predominant worldview is that of the Outsider**
        ** btw, clarks tend to grasp the concept of the Doctrine before the ‘other two’ do, if for no other reason than we’re all looking for a reasonable explanation …lol

      • Rebecca Glaessner Author

        The kind words are well deserved! Your concept is fascinating.

        I used to be saddened about being an outsider, but my little family that I’ve found myself part of, is a bunch of outsiders alike. We challenge each-other daily, and we’re always asking those “why?” questions. The deep ones that I used to get “because I said so” answers to.

        Except now, I give our kiddos the full explanation, every piece of understanding and knowledge I possibly can, for every possible situation, because we are a family of outsiders seeking an explanation for life and all the beings we encounter, and I know how much I had to fight to glean just an inkling.

      • Rebecca Glaessner Author

        Also, in response to your quick personality question, 2+2, my mind expanded to touch on all the possible summations and interpretations by the asker, instantly, before I read your following lines. Your theory of Clarks resonates deeply.

      • clark

        Thank you for the prompt for a Doctrine post!
        After reading your last comment my brain was getting clogged with ‘Oh, and, if that happens, try this’ and “omg, you know what that means’
        Then I thought… when did I last write a Welcome Guide to The Wakefield Doctrine?
        I have a Six Sentence Story going up tomorrow, so, if you stop by on Friday it might save you rummaging through 2,000 posts, (“Wait a darn minute! Did they really say I could tell what kinds of shoes are in the closet of a person I just met?!”)
        See you Friday

        *actually, we did…say that…and stand by our assertion lol

    • D. Avery @shiftnshake

      Thank you! So glad you enjoyed the interview and the Doctrine.

  2. Norah

    Nice to listen in on the chat with Clark and learn about his Wakefield Doctrine. I’ll reserve judgement until I read a little more about it.

    • clark

      Thank you for the ‘read’.

      The Wakefield Doctrine is quite useful in my writing. Due, imo, to the oddly (and effectively) linked characteristics of the three types.

      I mentioned to Rebecca, above, that the fundamental premise is that we, all of us, have the capacity for three perspectives on the world around us and the people who make it up… the three individual ‘types’ (predominant worldviews) are always available.
      …and fun, too!

      • Norah

        It’s always important to have fun; and be flexible in our interpretations of the world and its inhabitants. 🙂

  3. Ann Edall-Robson

    Once again, we are enlightened about yet another writer. Clark’s story process using six sentences to draw from can be likened to the Ranchers who use their 99 Word stories as a spring board into something much larger. Thank you for introducing us to him, Pal and Kid.

    • clark


      Thanks out to D. Avery for the invite… this Carrot Ranch, in general and the Saloon, in particular, are perfect examples of why I feel fortunate to have gotten into ‘the writing thing’.

      • D. Avery @shiftnshake

        Write? You meet the darnedest people (and characters)

  4. GirlieOnTheEdge

    Enjoyable interview!

    • D. Avery @shiftnshake

      Thanks Denise, hostess of Six Sentence Stories at GirlieOnTheEdge.

    • D. Avery @shiftnshake

      Thank you, and thank you for coming by. It sure was fun having our friend Clark here, and of course, Ian Devereaux.

  5. Mr. Ohh's Sideways View

    Interesting Ideas. and a great way to se your characters
    Laugh your way to a great day

    • D. Avery @shiftnshake

      Thank you. Characters of all sorts have a good time here at the Saddle Up.

    • clark

      Thank you.
      (Don’t tell anyone, but I use the (perspective) of the Doctrine when I interact with pretty much everyone!)
      I will surely try.

  6. Charli Mills

    Welcome to Carrot Ranch where we entertain diversity and chase down prompts wherever they lead. All clarks, rogers, scotts, and betty sues jam with verse and stories. We’ve seen a lot of serials emerge from writing constraints, including the fabulous Ranch Yarns, featuring Kid and Pal. World-building is such a great skill to have. Interesting how you have defined your world perspective in the Wakefield Doctrine for your writing, Clark. Thanks for sharing your writing experience with the Ranchers!

  7. clark

    Thankee, Miz Mills.

    I’m grateful for the opportunity to interact with writers and be welcomed in to the Carrot Ranch, a rather cool corner of the blogosphere.

    Seems to me that not only is variety the spice of life, but, in the context of writing, (from beginning to accomplished to assured), it is also the ultimate learning aid.

    D. Avery is a remarkable person and I have benefited from the experience here, and may, from time-to-time, be seen passing by slowly enough to increase the chances of someone saying, “Hey! We know you… come on in and set a spell”

    • D. Avery @shiftnshake

      Well, this is a rather cool corner of the blogosphere for sure, Clark. And I do, as always, challenge you to pare the Six sentences down to 99 words. It is always a worthwhile exercise.
      Many of my recurring characters (their stories aren’t quite serial) cross the border freely between Six Sentences and Carrot Ranch 99 word prompts. Kid and Pal seem to have disappeared again (probably mucking stalls and shoveling shift) but I know they got a kick out of having you over as a saloon guest.

  8. D. Avery @shiftnshake

    Thanks for the shout outs and further info.


  1. Monday -the Wakefield Doctrine- | the Wakefield Doctrine - […] Saddle Up Saloon; Howdy Clark Farley […]
  2. Friday -the Wakefield Doctrine- | the Wakefield Doctrine - […] of our Six Sentence Story friend, D. Avery, earlier in the week. It was both challenging and fun. (Read…

Discover more from Carrot Ranch Literary Community

Subscribe now to keep reading and get access to the full archive.

Continue reading