Tuesday, November 16, 2010

The Writing Life

The Writing Life
Annie Dillard
ISBN 978-0-06-091988-7
Edit mercilessly. Annie Dillard makes this point early in her short book of advice. Comparing the construction of a book to that of a house, she points out that the portion you must cut may have been the point of the whole story, the wall that must go may be a load bearing wall. All the writer can do is take out her hammer, knock out the wall, and duck.
Dillard makes other important points, such as avoid interesting work places. They will distract you from the work.
In an odd interlude near the middle of the book, a typewriter erupts like a volcano. That metaphor may well be the whole point of her book.
If you want to write, buy this book. Read it again and again.

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