It takes x hours to write a book and some percentage of x hours to wish I were a different writer, writing a different book.
A great photographer insists on writing poems. A brilliant essayist insists on writing novels. A singer with a voice like an angel insists on singing only her own, terrible songs. So when people tell me I should try to write this or that thing I don’t want to write, I know what they mean.
I don’t write long forms because I’m not interested in artificial deceleration. As soon as I see the glimmer of a consequence, I pull the trigger.
My least favorite received idea about writing is that one must find one’s voice, as if it’s there inside you, ready to be turned on like a player piano. Like character, its very existence depends on interaction with the world.
Slowly, slowly, I accumulate sentences. I have no idea what I’m doing until suddenly it reveals itself, almost done.
Inspired by brainpickings:
I learned that, to be a writer, one has first got to be what he is, what he was born…. You had only to remember what you were.
~ William Faulkner, Essays, Speeches & Public Letters
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