Mommy Dearest vs. Writers Block (Like Godzilla vs. King Kong!)

Just finished John McPhee's newest collection of essays, Draft No. 4, and though it's not a writing advice book per se, it does contain its fair share of writerly wisdom, many of interest to poets. Here are some quotes from the book along with comments from the peanut gallery. "Though a man be more prone … Continue reading Mommy Dearest vs. Writers Block (Like Godzilla vs. King Kong!)

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Make It Strange

In Chapter 4 of his thought-invoking book, Why Poetry, Matthew Zapruder quotes a Russian literary scholar, essayist, novelist, and memoirist no one's heard of: Viktor Shklovsky. Viktor's eureka moment? He claimed that the language of artistic texts is no different than the language of texts used to convey information. Asterisk. Make that BIG asterisk. In … Continue reading Make It Strange

Vital Signs for the Impatient Writer

Writers know they are alive by receiving rejections. Those rote e-mails in the inbox are vital signs--reminders of the obvious and the necessary. Receiving them is like focusing on the autonomous functions of your lungs breathing and your heart beating (Yep, all there and all working!) The trouble is, rejections (peppered with the powerful flavor … Continue reading Vital Signs for the Impatient Writer