A beautiful meditation on keeping notes that explores the heart of the writing process.
Exploring the art of writing, and what it means to the author.
Why novelists love writing essays, explained by a novelist in an essay.
"What I have to say about craft extends no further than my own experience, which is what it is - 12 years and three novels."
I’ve always felt that there’s a kinship between writers and explorers. I’m not saying this is some great insight on my part. In fact, explore is probably one of the verbs most commonly employed to try and explain what we think writers are doing when they write.
"For those who simply wish to write, the digital arena offers unprecedented empowerment, but online authorship is also a difficult game to come into cold for those who have hopes of doing more than seeing their words appear on a screen."
"When I was twenty years old, I became a kind of apprentice to a man named Andrew Lytle..."
"The New Yorker, which published some of his best fiction, never did any of his nonfiction: He couldn't have changed his voice to suit the magazine's famous house style, a "plain style", which is about erasing yourself as a writer and laying claim to a kind of invisible narrative authority."
"A book-in-progress is a kind of hideously damaged infant that follows the writer around wanting love, wanting the very thing its hideousness guarantees it’ll get: the writer’s complete attention."
"The honeymoon’s end between the literary Establishment and the contemporary young writer was an inevitable and foreseeable consequence of the same shameless hype that led to many journeyman writers’ premature elevation in the first place…"
"Fiction writers as a species tend to be oglers. They tend to lurk and to stare. The minute fiction writers stop moving, they start lurking, and stare. They are born watchers."
"A Literary Manifesto for the New Social Novel"
"Nerdily Private Dreams, Species of Outsider, Writing in Plain English, Raw Authenticity, Alienated Socioeconomic Posturing, Injustice, Selling the Sacred, Art and Death."
"The first step is to stare at a blank piece of paper for a while..."
"So you didn’t win a Nobel Prize in Literature this week. I know, it’s total bullshit. You totally deserved it. But you might just be a calendar year away from getting the recognition you so obviously deserve. Let me show you the way."
I’ve blurbed so many books that they fill a bookcase. The exact number? Hard to say, but certainly in the triple digits.
"The circumstances surrounding the writing of Nineteen Eighty-Four make a haunting narrative that helps to explain the bleakness of Orwell's dystopia."