Play It, Maestro

A writer should worship words the way a maestro worships Mahler and play them with the same kind of fervor those maestros show on the podium. Using a different metaphor, I discussed this in one of my recent videos (released on our social media channels every Thursday morning). I’d like to say (or show) a few more words on this.

Playwrights tend to be especially gifted with language. Here’s a passage from Peter Shaffer’s play Amadeus, in which a composer, a jealous rival of Mozart, discusses the importance of his profession:

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Time To Write

Awhile back, at a writers’ conference, a young woman raised her hand during a panel and asked, “I just recently graduated from college and it’s hard for me to find time to write now. How can we be paid for our writing?”

One of the panelists made a noise that sounded like a cross between a bus door opening and a dog coughing. “No one is going to give you money to write,” they said. “I mean, get a job.”
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Dog Day Advice

As we enter the lazy days of August, I’m going to (lazily) borrow some advice from two writers.

Ann Patchett recently published an essay in the Washington Post about how Snoopy influenced her as a writer. Not Snoopy’s actual writing, which wasn’t that stellar. (He began almost every story with: It was a dark and stormy night.) But Patchett drew inspiration from the bravado with which Snoopy approached writing, perched atop his doghouse with a typewriter, reminiscent of the bravado he displayed perched atop his doghouse as a World War I flying ace.  Continue reading “Dog Day Advice”