austinkleon:

READ A BOOK INSTEAD

I made an iPhone wallpaper for you.

Getting off tumblr now…

austinkleon:

READ A BOOK INSTEAD

I made an iPhone wallpaper for you.

Getting off tumblr now…

nouvellabooks:

YOU. GUYS. Here is Edan Lepucki being all poised and charming on the freaking Colbert Report right after he announces California has hit #3 on the freaking NYT Best-Seller’s List! #3! 

So, um, you know, if you want to be really ahead of the curve on this one and read some early Lepucki, you know what to do. Pick up a copy of If You’re Not yet Like Me and you can be all “Oh, Edan Lepucki? Yeah, I’ve read her oeuvre.”

Woohoo! Congrats, italicsmine! So excited for you!
millionsmillions:

Beginning today and lasting to the end of the summer, the New Yorker website is free — and includes its complete archive. Our humble suggestions of where to begin your reading frenzy.

Ack! Lotsa reading to do!

millionsmillions:

Beginning today and lasting to the end of the summer, the New Yorker website is free — and includes its complete archive. Our humble suggestions of where to begin your reading frenzy.

Ack! Lotsa reading to do!

HELP!

italicsmine:

I am looking to interview an American teenage girl who is super, super into YA dystopian novels like The Hunger Games and Divergent.  If you have a blog or Tumblr or goodreads group devoted to the topic, even better.  Please email me at edan dot lepucki at gmail dot com! 

And please re-blog!  Amazing teenagers, I want to talk to you!

Teenage girls, get on this!

Many thanks to Jason Diamond and all the folks at Flavorwire!

"Then I had kids. But what a boring story: “Then I had kids.” Still, I have to be truthful. And the truth is something happened when I had kids. I went from not being able to think of a single story to being unable to stop seeing stories pretty much every place I looked. Now, before anybody raises a hand to object, I am not a biological essentialist, nor one of these people who believe a gift for empathy arrives along with the placenta. The explanation, in my opinion, is less dramatic: storybooks. For the first time since childhood I am back in the realm of stories and storybooks — three stories read out loud to a four year old, every night, on pain of death — and this practice has reawakened in me something I thought I’d misplaced a long time ago, on book tour, perhaps, or in the back row of a university lecture hall. This feeling of narrative possibility and wonder — this idea that every person is a world. How could I have forgotten that? Did I really almost drift away, down that anemic, intellectual path where storytelling is considered vulgar and characters a stain on the purity of a sentence? Dear Lord — almost. I’m so grateful now to have the opportunity to reacquaint myself with stories like The Magic Finger by Roald Dahl. I lie in bed with my daughter, reading aloud this Kafkaesque tale of a family of duck hunters, who wake up one morning with wings where their arms should be, and it sends me back to my desk with an ease and fluidity I haven’t felt since my own childhood."

Storytelling Is a Magical, Ruthless Discipline

Zadie Smith, this is perfect.

(via bluetruedream)

Bean asks me and Patrick to tell him stories every day, multiple times a day. So we are not only reading the storybooks every day, we’re also having to create vivid and compelling tales to him, on the fly.  Patrick is really good at it. I am not.  But I love the narrative muscles I am getting!

(via italicsmine)

I don’t have kids, but I do love storybooks and narrative possibilities and remembering what it felt like to be a kid myself.

(via italicsmine)

"Throw away the scale. There is no scale, there is only your story. Listen to the story you are trying to tell, that unconscious combination of imagination and memory and feeling, and trust it. Concentrate on expressing that as clearly as you can, concentrate on finding the language for it, but above all don’t second-guess it. It’s your true north. Because here’s the great thing about novels and writing and creating anything: nobody else can possibly write the book you’re writing. It is yours, singular, and the more clearly it is expressed the more alive its singularity will be. If you want to be ruthless, be ruthless about clarity, be ruthless about trusting yourself, be ruthless about finding generosity for your characters, but most of all be ruthless about ignoring the inner demon that keeps telling you you’ll never be as good as Eudora Welty or Zadie Smith or David Mitchell or James Baldwin or whoever, that your novel will never be better than an 8. That inner demon is full of fear, and fear, if anything, is what reduces a novel and sterilizes its language. Fear, in writing, is a self-fulfilling prophesy. So banish it, banish the whole scale, and trust your own dark bouquet of inspiration. Thank god you’re not those other writers. We already have their books, but we don’t have yours…"

Ted Thompson, answering your Ask a Debut Novelist Qs at Little, Brown.

Way more Sugary advice where that came from…

(via rachelfershleiser)

I want to tie this around my finger like a piece of string.

(via litcitizenship)

30 Pages 30 Days: A Very Tardy Wrap-up and Reflection

Man, oh man. I meant to write this post immediately after the end of my 30 Pages 30 Days run, but then daily life stuff got in the way, and now it’s been more than a month since the end of my experiment and what good is an experiment anyway without publishing the results, right? 

So…

The experiment was a rousing success (as far as extremely moderate writing experiments go)! Though I aimed for 30 pages, I ended up writing a total of 37 pages. Something I genuinely didn’t expect: writing everyday freed me up creatively. Though currently I am my own boss on this project in every conceivable way (I have no one I need to show pages to, no hard deadlines, no one’s specific expectations to fulfill), my inner critic had been holding me back even when I batted her away and told her to get lost. The simple act of daily writing meant she finally went away on her own volition. I was so focused on just getting the work done that I effectively silenced that annoying voice in my head. It seems to follow that I was less hard on myself overall. I had a string of sucky days and then a string of great days. Sometimes I could barely write a page, other days the page came easily and I kept going. Sometimes I kept going because I hated the first page and just wanted to get to something better. After the 30 days were up, I’d decided I would take a day or two off, but I’d worked up so much momentum that I couldn’t stop right away and wrote a page on day 31 almost without thinking about it, like it was muscle memory. Once I did stop, it took me three days to get back into writing again. 

This past month has been spotty in terms of my writing time. My total page count in the last 30 days is less than half of what I accomplished in the previous 30. Things have been a little crazy (we adopted a second cat! my husband’s been working a ton!), but I know that if I’d insisted on it, I could probably have knocked out at least another page a day without too much effort. 

So now the challenge, as it often is: simply to continue. Weirdly enough, the hardest part of the whole challenge became taking daily photos that seemed interesting enough to post. But they did help keep me accountable, so I’m thinking weekly photos instead, with page counts/word counts/total writing time logged, whatever I feel like sharing for the week. I’ll be posting those (along with a hefty helping of cats and baked goods) here on my Instagram. 

litcitizenship:

It can take a long time to write a novel. Ten years. Or more. 

I first read this post a couple years ago when I was in my graduate program, working on my thesis—a short story collection—and wishing I could figure out how to write a novel. Now I’m in the midst of writing my first novel, and rereading this inspires me in a concrete way I couldn’t have understood before. While I don’t expect it’ll take 10 years to finish this book, I can only control so much of the process. And whatever path it ultimately sets me on, maybe that’s the right one anyway, somehow. 

litcitizenship:

It can take a long time to write a novel. Ten years. Or more. 

I first read this post a couple years ago when I was in my graduate program, working on my thesis—a short story collection—and wishing I could figure out how to write a novel. Now I’m in the midst of writing my first novel, and rereading this inspires me in a concrete way I couldn’t have understood before. While I don’t expect it’ll take 10 years to finish this book, I can only control so much of the process. And whatever path it ultimately sets me on, maybe that’s the right one anyway, somehow. 

"We live in a moment where it’s so easy to see what everyone else is doing and to compare yourself to that. Seek your truth and tell it. Just seek your truth. It is a harder thing to sit in the stillness. You’re the best person to tell your own story. Trust that."

— Edwidge Danticat (via mttbll)

(Source: therumpus.net, via daycathy)