Friday, November 26, 2010

Miller. Rabbit holes. Writing. Recklessness.

I am working on a guest post for Lori over at Escape Between the Pages tonight. It's about taking walks on holidays, and I remembered that a writer I greatly admire had some quote on walking and thinking, how walking gets the mind rolling. I was pretty sure it was Henry Miller. I googled and promptly went down a Henry Miller rabbit hole. 

Wow, it's been a while since I thought about Henry Miller, who was major favorite of mine in my early twenties. Not for the famous Tropics so much as his personal writings. Sexus, Nexus and Plexus, Black Spring, Collossus of Maroussi. 

Then I went to my bookshelf and pulled down a copy of The Wisdom of the Heart, a book of his essays, and flipped through, wondering how I might feel about Miller now that I'm in my 40's. Gah, sorry Lori! I'll get that post done yet tonight!

Anyway, on my google odyssey, I stumbled on a great Henry Miller blog, which featured Miller's list of writing commandments, which Miller made for himself in 1933; You have to scroll down to get the full list, which is three posts from the end. But of particular interest to me these days are: 
#3. Don't be nervous. Work calmly, joyously, recklessly on whatever is in hand.
#8. Don't be a draught-horse! Work with pleasure only.
This is because I am working on two short stories for anthologies. I've been getting into this way of thinking, like, OMG, these stories have to be amazing because they might be the only thing somebody sees of my work. People will read these stories and decide whether they like Carolyn Crane based on them. Shit! Gotta make this count! 

And of course that is a terrible place for a writer to be. So, I'm looking at this list, and I especially need to emblazon #3 across my wall!! 


orannia said...

Good luck with the novellas Carolyn!

*creeps away to Google Henry Miller* ...I am such a book pleb :)

woolydaisy said...

we recently went to the henry miller memorial library in big sur. ahhh!! haven't read him in years. our visit inspired me to go back to miller. after i finish your book of course:)

Chris said...

No pressure, huh?!

I want to hibernate until spring.