9 September, 2019 § Leave a comment
“A writer is someone for whom writing is more difficult than it is for other people.”
Thomas Mann, Essays of Three Decades
How true is that?
Most people can write, even if only their name.
Most people can fashion a blog or a letter or a job application, even if they need some help.
Those who are called to write from a professional standpoint … it becomes harder.
Forcing creativity is a challenge. The right words don’t always come. Or they fall out in the wrong order. Or some words are missing and they’re needed to make the entire work make sense.
Inspiration doesn’t come on demand and sometimes pops in at the most inopportune times when you don’t have a pen or paper or app to capture it.
Deadlines can be killers of words. The closer a due date looms the harder it is to write. The words that are written are scratched as soon as they hit the paper. More than one writer has begged leniency from an editor for an extended deadline. And self-imposed deadlines? They are made of elastic.
Finally, that sense of writing something beautiful, read-worthy and magical that puffs out your chest and makes you feel you’ve chosen the right path can be vaporised into the air by one tiny criticism, a rejection letter, a comment.
Such a nefarious activity, writing.
And yet, we crave it. We love it. We play with words and build castles of stories.
We wouldn’t have it any other way. Writers are tough, strong, persistent, insistent and dedicated to their craft. We can handle difficult … can’t we?
21 December, 2013 § Leave a comment
3 December, 2013 § Leave a comment
Sometimes people need to embed the belief. Write it out 100 times … a day.
3 August, 2013 § 1 Comment
As a teacher of Creative Writing I often wonder how I am contributing to the aspiring writers in my class. Yes, they enjoy the class and gain value from it … but does it help them?
Peter Carey teaches in the US and wondered the same thing. He now teaches a small cohort with the defined objective of at least half becoming published authors.
I’m also reminded of Margaret Attwood’s dismissive attitude to university Creative Writing programs.
Perhaps Stephen King is right: