A passage from ‘Why I Fucking Love Teenage Girls (A Personal Essay From An Almost Adult)’ (via kissngluke)
1. Don’t think that being published will make you happy. It will for four weeks, if you are lucky. Then it’s the same old fucking shit.
2. Hemingway was fucking wrong. You shouldn’t write drunk. (See my third novel for details.)
3. Hemingway was also right. ‘The first draft of everything is shit.’
4. Never ask a publisher or agent what they are looking for. The best ones, if they are honest, don’t have a fucking clue, because the best books are the ones that seemingly come from nowhere.
5. In five years time the semi-colon is going to be nothing more than a fucking wink.
6. In five years time every fucking person on Twitter will be a writer.
7. Ignore the fucking snobs. Write that space zombie sex opera. Just give it some fucking soul.
8. If it’s not worth fucking reading, it’s not worth fucking writing. If it doesn’t make people laugh or cry or blow their fucking minds then why bother?
9. Don’t be the next Stephen King or the next Zadie Smith or the next Neil Gaiman or the next Jonathan Safran fucking Foer. Be the next fucking you.
10. Stories are fucking easy. PLOT OF EVERY BOOK EVER: Someone is looking for something. COMMERCIAL VERSION: They find it. LITERARY VERSION: They don’t find it. (That’s fucking it.)
11. No-one knows anything. Especially fucking me. Except:
12. Don’t kill off the fucking dog.
13. Oh, yeah, and lastly: write whatever you fucking want.
Matt Haig, “Some Fucking Writing Tips”
So true about the commercial version versus the literary version…
Writing this novel reminds me of being driven through the Lincoln Tunnel when I was a kid in my parents’ van, when they’d commute to work in the city. All that traffic just to get to it, but once we were in the tunnel it got worse. Would we ever reach the end? Why aren’t we moving? Why all this traffic? What if the tunnel collapses on us? Isn’t the tunnel underwater? Someone said we’re underwater. What if it floods? What if the river crashes in? What if we never get out? Will we die down here? Ugh, the exhaust smell is leaking in. What is that bus ahead of us doing, why isn’t it moving? Is the end of the tunnel around that next bend? No. The next bend? No. The next? The next? The next?
Only when I gave up hoping for it did I see the light at the end of the tunnel and we’d drive out. Then of course we hit more traffic in Midtown, but at least we were out of that goddamn tunnel and I could breathe.
I can’t wait to finish this first draft.
Alice Munro, Runaway (via isserleylovesbooks)
Alice Munro, “Chance” (via carriescott)
Alice Munro, Too Much Happiness (via leanezes)