I’ve just found a new love affair with writing. Maybe it’s because I just read Writing Down The Bones by Natalie Goldberg. It’s a gem of a book. And I’ve been struggling a bit lately with sitting down and writing; the critic in me has grown fat and boisterous and I’ve been whipping myself about not writing regularly enough — writing shouldn’t become a chore like everything else, dammit! I shouldn’t just do it out of duty, but out of love — and just being anxious.
But fuck it, when I’m writing I realize is when I’m most alive. So I’ve gone back to some basic animal instinct when writing, not worrying about all the other shit. And hopefully what I’ve learnt about this writing thing can also translate into my life, too, since that’s the point. If I can live more at the keyboard, I should be able to live more in life, too.
There’s a fantastic read in the Guardian Books about the lost art of editing. A good read if only to keep remembering that as a writer one should learn to be a good editor, I think. It’s our work, we should make it ours right up to the end!
And here are 2 fab quotes from Jeanette Winterson:
“Books remain a pocket of air in an upturned boat.”
“I would like to see zest for difficulty making a comeback. Must we always be transparent? Remember when TS Eliot was asked what he meant by “Lady, three white leopards sat under a juniper tree”, he said: “I meant, ‘Lady, three white leopards sat under a juniper tree’.” I have no idea what that means, but I am glad it didn’t get edited into “Mrs, there’s three wild animals under that shrub”. We should edit with good sense, of course, but with a sense that sense is not everything”