How Do You Keep an Edge When Writing?

Posted: December 26, 2018 in author, book; books, editor, epistolary, Fiction, literature, meaning, Musing, Musings, Novel, opinion, philosophy, writing

Wise Friend,

Years ago, I attended an evening with an author. I’ve found the notes I took. I didn’t write the author’s name.

Sensitive Friend,

So unlike you!

Wise Friend,

Yep. I looked up the quotes or expressions he used, and I found none. Why did I go? Was I interested in his books? No. So why? I tend to check things out.

His father was black, his mother Jewish. He talked with the usual American accent of a person who read and studied a lot.

When he read from his books he used a fast black accent.

I looked at him in amazement–I hardly understood him–wondering if his thoughts changed when using that accent. Were his passion and anger more intense when writing with that accent? It fascinated me. Am I permitted?

Sensitive Friend,

I do the same, and therefore you have my permission.

Wise Friend,

Later he answered questions from the interviewer and from the audience.

I enjoyed his answers: “Writing is a dream. You have to dream every day, and you keep on writing from 30 minutes to…10 hours. You have to know how to put yourself in that state of dreaming. Like meditating.”

Sensitive Friend,

I like that. He is correct the dream state allows you to flow.

Wise Friend,

He quoted a poet who said: “If a poem comes I catch it”. What a lovely expression!

He talked about the importance of dialogue in books, “All the writers write and scrutinise the world. The trick is to do this and to entertain the reader.”

Sensitive Friend,

Scrutinising is valuable to oneself and others only if one is wise.

Wise Friend,

The readers must be wise, too.

Somebody asked him, “How do you keep an edge?”

“Tell the truth once a day and your life will go in the direction you want.”

Hmmm!  Idealistic or am I getting too cynical, after 20 years doing business?

Sensitive Friend,

He is one writer whose truth many will allow and cherish.

What is more important than truth, the social skills to tell it well, choose your moments, and to decide when to throw all prudence to the winds and say it, anyway?

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