Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Tuesday's Inspiration taken from a book of essays by John Gardner

Every few years when I start feeling stressed by the writing projects I'm working on, I pull out this book of essays by John Gardner published in 1983. When I was at a low point in my writing career, having returned to work as a nurse and being unable to write, I picked up a copy of On Becoming A Novelist by John Gardner. This wasn't the usual book on writing that talked about methods and ways to write but about the spirit and soul of a writer.

The opening essay was titled The Writer's Nature. This spoke of the question a beginning writer asks and sometimes a writer who has stopped writing for some reason. "Do I have what it takes to be a writer?"

The one thing in the opening to the essay that struck me was stubbornness or persistence. That was definitely one of my traits. So while I worked as a nurse I garnered other things, experiences and people that I would use when I returned to writing.

What I had wasn't exactly a writer's block but more a dormant period where I rested and waited. So the first thing a writer needs is that persistence that allows him or her to get up after being slapped down and moving on. A dormant period is what gives us the material to go on in the future. So hold onto the dream and and know one day the dormant seeds will bloom again.

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