Inspiration #3

Every Sunday, I choose a passage of wisdom from someone who knows better and much more than I do about writing, life, the universe and/or everything.

Share and enjoy!

It is a truism that a writer reveals the self, sometimes in full awareness, sometimes unconsciously, but that is the goal. That finally is all that any of us has to offer as writers: our own perceptions of the world, our own interpretation of our culture, our experiences in fictional terms. Just as a writer must be a people watcher, the writer must look inward for the emotion that drives people. Watch people to see the range of behavior; look inward to find the cause.

-Kate Wilhelm, Storyteller: Writing Lessons and More from 27 Years of the Clarion Writers’ Workshop

3 thoughts on “Inspiration #3

  1. Steinbeck said there is only one story – which he identifies as the contest in ourselves of good and evil.

    With a lot of qualifications, I probably agree. However, I’ve also often thought he might not have gone far enough in the field of insupportable over-generalizations.

    We really only have one character too. We’re the only ones we know enough about to truly understand our motivations. (If we ever succeed at that.) So what motivates our characters is what motivates us. We are the only character we’ve got.

    So writing is really a kind of exhibitionism …

    1. Well put. I totally agree. Particularly about us being the only character we’ve got. It’s like we’re composting ourselves and growing stories from our own decomposition.

  2. Excellent and thought-provoking post as awalys particularly this part: I’m going to tell the inner child that wants everybody to like her to get over it I’m still learning this when it comes to doing writing/editing favours for people. I hate saying no, and don’t want to be a bad friend so I say yes and, like you, I owe my allegiance elsewhere and I bloody well know it. Yet, I find myself writing and editing resumes and cover letters for people, and website content, and even letters of complaint to landlords and business owners for nothing more than a pat on the head. And then these people disappear afterward until the next favour is needed.My Muse is not a ten-foot tall buff angel boy (though he sounds delightful!) mine is more like Danny DeVito if he was a grotesque, with scales and a ridiculously foul-mouth. He’s no eye-candy, but he’s got some pretty good ideas and I’d be better off working for his hard-won approval than for gratitude from someone else.

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