Where life is lived

on June 13, 2008 with 0 comments » |

Picked up a book of essays, On Writing, by Eudora Welty from the public library this afternoon. Expect many quotes from this book in the near future. There are quite a few sentences on every page that I want to write down or quote!

For starters, here is one which I found by randomly opening the book while walking back from the library. Its from an essay titled, "Must the novelist crusade?".

Writing fiction is an interior affair. Novels and stories always will be put down little by little out of personal feeling and personal beliefs arrived at alone and at firsthand over a period of time as time is needed. To go outside and beat the drum is only to interrupt, interrupt, and so finally to forget and to lose. Fiction has, and must keep, a private address. For life is lived in a private place; where it means anything is inside the mind the heart. Fiction has always shown life where it is lived, and good fiction, or so I have faith, will continue to do this.
And another random jump, to an essay "Words into fiction", where she writes:
Fiction is not the cave; and human life, fiction's territory; merely contains caves. I am only trying to express what I think the so-called raw material is without its interpretation; without its artist. Without the act of human understanding - and it is a double act through which we make sense to each other - experience is the worst kind of emptiness; it is obliteration, black or prismatic, as meaningless as was indeed that loveless cave. Before there is meaning, there has to occur some personal act of vision. And it is this that is continuously projected as the novelist writes, and again as we, each to ourselves, read.

If this makes fiction sound full of mystery, it's fuller than I know how to say. ........ The mystery lies in the use of language to express human life.
And more later...

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