Why do writers write? Because it isn\’t there.
After reading some writing quotes, it struck me. Most of the truly successful writers have industrial sized chips on their shoulders. And are quite proud to show them off. The novels I\’ve been reading this summer, the ones that get under your skin and stay with you a few days, they\’re not written by nice people with a message of grace and love to spread to the world. Most of them are damd mad and not going to take it anymore.
The problem is, nice people don\’t get mad. That\’s what my mother taught me. Anger was the big no no. Don\’t feel it, and certainly don\’t express it, not in front of anyone, anyway. So I go and write a book and totally ignore that fact that the main character is so pissed at the world it colors everything she does. I ignore and therefore she ignores it, denies it, and the whole book ends up feeling like a lie. So the question of the book becomes, sure the command is Be angry, but sin not, but what happens when you don\’t listen to that sage advice. What happens when you get angry and sin your heart out, then go on a bit more? I\’m starting to think that\’s the book. Because nice girls didn\’t get angry in the forties. They didn\’t live it out and take it out on strangers.
Which isn\’t the typical \”female adventure story.\” But maybe it\’s a bit closer to the female experience, of the world falling apart at the seams and not being able to do a damn thing the fix it.
So it\’s all Stephen King\’s fault. I\’ve been reading through his stuff, in mostly chronological order this summer. And something stands out. In the darkness of all his stories, the light is clear. There is good and evil and no doubt which side is which. Unlike real life. But light shines brighter in the dark. You really don\’t need a flashlight at twighlight, but it sure is necessary at one am on a moonless night. But more on that another time…
Rage is the only quality which has kept me, or anybody I have ever
studied, writing columns for newspapers.
— Jimmy Breslin
What I have most wanted to do throughout the past ten years is to make political writing into an art. My starting point is always a feeling of partisanship, a sense of injustice. When I sit down to write a book, I do not say to myself, ‘I am going to produce a work of art’. I write it because there is some lie that I want to expose, some fact to which I want to draw attention, and my initial concern is to get a hearing. – George Orwell
I hated school. I don\’t trust anybody who looks back on the years from 14 to 18 with any enjoyment. If you liked being a teenager, there\’s something really wrong with you.
ps, I only liked school until I was 14. And I enjoyed college. But hs was the pits.