Hemingway can always cheer me up on the rainy days. I can sit here all day telling you how great Hemingway is, and it would still not do justice to the magic of his works. I can only ask you to read his books yourself. And maybe when years pass after you read them, you’ll wonder if it was only some story, or did these things really happened to you.
Read Hemingway’s writing Process!
People of tomorrow and yesterday. Change, rapid change is in the air; there’s no denying it. I feel your anxiety because I’m there along with you. I feel your impatience because I also want things to speed though. But, now more than ever, we need to be patient, and think. Don’t yet act, think. If we act too soon our decisions are bound to be rash, so we must think. The supreme court’s decision to pass gay marriage is a great sign of acceptance from a cynically repressive society, however, it is also a sign of civil discontent for the lack of social structure. They want to be included and recognized as being part of the social symbolic network. Nobody wants to be outcasts. With the fall of religion, morality is in danger. We simply don’t know what to do anymore. It is the cause of all of the mass shootings by young teenagers. They are confused. My generation is a wondering generation. We are looking for something that’s not yet here. We’re all blind men searching for a glint in the sky. We’re the woman in stilettos trying to run. We’re trying to make the impossible happen. And rest assured miracles do happen, will happen; In time.
Kurt Vonnegut created some of the most outrageously memorable novels of our time, such as Cat’s Cradle, Breakfast Of Champions, and Slaughterhouse Five. His work is a mesh of contradictions: both science fiction and literary, dark and funny, classic and counter-culture, warm-blooded and very cool. And it’s all completely unique.
With his customary wisdom and wit, Vonnegut put forth 8 basics of what he calls Creative Writing 101: *
- Use the time of a total stranger in such a way that he or she will not feel the time was wasted.
- Give the reader at least one character he or she can root for.
- Every character should want something, even if it is only a glass of water.
- Every sentence must do one of two things—reveal character or advance the action.
- Start as close to the end as possible.
- Be a sadist. No matter how sweet and innocent your leading characters, make awful things happen to them—in order that the reader may see what they are made of.
- Write to please just one person. If you open a window and make love to the world, so to speak, your story will get pneumonia.
- Give your readers as much information as possible as soon as possible. To heck with suspense. Readers should have such complete understanding of what is going on, where and why, that they could finish the story themselves, should cockroaches eat the last few pages.
The greatest American short story writer of my generation was Flannery O’Connor (1925-1964). She broke practically every one of my rules but the first. Great writers tend to do that.
* From the preface to Vonnegut’s short story collection Bagombo Snuff Box
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