First, find out what your hero wants, then just follow him! Most of the basic material a writer works with is acquired before the age of fifteen. I like the whooshing sound they make as they fly by.
Poetry creates the myth, the prose writer draws its portrait. A writer without interest or sympathy for the foibles of his fellow man is not conceivable as a writer. Science fiction writers, I am sorry to say, really do not know anything.
Half my life is an act of revision. People do not deserve to have good writing, they are so pleased with bad.
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I went for years not finishing anything. Because, of course, when you finish something you can be judged. A word is dead When it is said, Some say. I say it just begins to live that day. Writing a novel is like driving a car at night.
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You can only see as far as your headlights, but you can make the whole trip that way. I am irritated by my own writing. I am like a violinist whose ear is true, but whose fingers refuse to reproduce precisely the sound he hears within. It is the writer who might catch the imagination of young people, and plant a seed that will flower and come to fruition.
The work never matches the dream of perfection the artist has to start with. Begin with an individual, and before you know it you have created a type; begin with a type, and you find you have created — nothing. The unread story is not a story; it is little black marks on wood pulp. The reader, reading it, makes it live: Almost anyone can be an author; the business is to collect money and fame from this state of being.
A wounded deer leaps the highest. Imagination, not invention, is the supreme master of art as of life. Literature is all, or mostly, about sex.
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Writers are always selling somebody out. Generally I dig down underneath them so far that the story that finally comes out is not what people thought their anecdotes were about. You learn by writing short stories. Keep writing short stories. Writing is not necessarily something to be ashamed of, but do it in private and wash your hands afterwards.
This impressionistic travelogue, whose rolling, incantatory style predicted the Beat Generation, was inspired by the time Miller spent in Greece with Lawrence Durrell before the SecondWorldWar.
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But she spends this novel trying to work out why her son committed a school massacre. Was her snobbery about her fellow Americans a cause?
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