I am a collector of quotations. Who better to comment on the writing life than those who have struggled through it, right?
Ah, but my high school students aren’t so sure, especially at the beginning of the school year. They don’t get it. I share a quotation and get blank looks.
“So what does this mean?” I ask. They hesitate, thinking that I want the “right” answer. As you know, there there kind of isn’t one.
Oh, an opinion question? That changes everything. Feel the relief. And listen to the ideas pour out.
Care to try your hand at this? Here are some from Monday’s class. What secrets of the writing life are laid bare?
“Every writer I know has trouble writing.” (Joseph Heller)
You are not alone in your struggle with the blank page.
“Art is never finished, only abandoned.” (Leonardo Da Vinci)
You’ll never feel quite done.
And you’ll always notice your mistakes, even in published work.
“When I write, I feel like an armless, legless man with a crayon in his mouth.” (Kurt Vonnegut)
Yes, that feeling is part of the deal.
“My purpose is to entertain myself first and other people second.” (John D. MacDonald)
Make sure that one person likes what you write—you!
“The important work of moving the world forward does not wait to be done by perfect men.”(George Eliot)
So somebody has to write the books, the movies, the television shows for the next generation. Might as well be you, right?
Oh, and you’ll never feel quite adequate for the task.
Do you like this idea for a series? I do. I’ll share more over the coming weeks. Or months.