Lauren Leto

Writers Are Crazy

Posted in book porn by Lauren Leto on December 22, 2009

“How to Write a Great Novel”

Great article from the Wall Street Journal.

Orhan Pamuk struggles with the first sentence, he rewrites it over and over. When I write, I tend to add to the front, instead of the back – meaning, I’ve had so many first passages, that my original beginning is actually on page 20 now.

Kazuo Ishiguro was interviewed. I want to start reading him. No, not because reading Murakami is becoming passé! Stupidtrendbookwhores. Anyways, he writes his first draft by hand. Bad ass.

Michael Ondaatje writes in Muji notebooks(also bad ass). In case you don’t know what they look like:

Richard Powers speaks his novels into his computer using voice detection software. LAME/cheating.

Margaret Atwood quote:

“Put your left hand on the table. Put your right hand in the air. If you stay that way long enough, you’ll get a plot,” Margaret Atwood says when asked where her ideas come from. When questioned about whether she’s ever used that approach, she adds, “No, I don’t have to.”

She’s so hot.

Anyone else think of Sarah’s father from Bridge of Sighs by Richard Russo? He’d send his daughter to her mother for the summer and lock himself away in his house to work on his (ultimately failed and flawed) novel.

Read the whole thing. It is great.

How do you write?

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4 Responses

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  1. Eric said, on December 22, 2009 at 2:24 pm

    I have to be out of the house. There’s about a three day window in which I can write in a new house before it becomes home, and I can’t work in it anymore. There’s also a little room for finagling when it comes to short stories –for some reason I can write those a little more freely– but with my novels I have to be out someplace, usually a coffee shop. Laptop is preferable, but I’ve done a little work longhand.

    And music. I keep meaning to throw down some of my playlists. I’ll get around to it eventually.

  2. Denis said, on December 23, 2009 at 8:11 pm

    “Kazuo Ishiguro was interviewed. I want to start reading him. No, not because reading Murakami is becoming passé! Stupidtrendbookwhores. Anyways, he writes his first draft by hand. Bad ass.”

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHA. Anyone who compares Murakami to Ishiguro is an idiot. Just because they’re both Japanese…that’s like saying you should stop reading Atwood and start reading Munro.

    Ishiguro is amazing. Pick up “Never Let Me Go.”

  3. Stephanie said, on December 30, 2009 at 4:04 pm

    Haven’t checked to see if she’s in there, but Lynda Barry actually painted her novel on yellow notebook paper.


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