The month of June has been a difficult month for me and my kids. We had to face some really hard challenges. I rarely wrote during that time, because I can only write when I distance myself from situations and all kinds of emotions.
In times like that it’s hard for me to be myself. The only way I can lift my spirit and keep a positive attitude is to read about writing and other great writers. I have books and notebooks filled with quotes on how the great writers do it. I would like to share some with you.
Every story or book starts with an idea, a germ, or a flash as some authors call it.
And as Henry James described it:
“The precious particle… the stray suggestion, the wandering word, the vague echo, at a touch of which the novelist’s imagination winces as at the prick of some sharp point, its virtue is all in its needle-like quality, the power to penetrate as finely as possible.”
William Faulkner said that ‘The Sound and the Fury’ “began with a mental picture. I didn’t realize at the time it was symbolical. The picture was of the muddy seat of a little girl’s drawers in a pear tree, where she could see through a window what was happening to her brothers on the ground below. By the time I explained who they were and what they were doing and how her pants got muddy, I realized it would be impossible to get all of it into a short story and it would be a book.”
On the other hand, Frank O’Conner whose imagination was not visual, said: “If you’re the sort of person that meets a girl in the street and instantly notices the color of her eyes and of her hair and the sort of dress she’s wearing, then you’re not in the least like me. … I have terribly sensitive hearing and I’m terribly aware of voices.”
So does Dorothy Parker, for she said: “I haven’t got a visual mind. I hear things.”
So which one of these writers are you? Do you see things? Do you hear things? Or maybe both?
Have a great weekend visualizing, hearing and writing!