“Setting words in writing may be the tactic of a bully that is secret” as well as other selections from Why I Write
The question of what propels creators, especially great creators, could be the subject of eternal fascination and cultural curiosity. In “Why I Write,” originally published into the New York Times Book Review on December 5, 1976 and discovered when you look at the Writer on Her Work, Volume 1 (public library), Joan Didion—whose indelible insight on self-respect is a must-read for all—peels the curtain on a single of the very celebrated and distinctive voices of American fiction and literary journalism to show what it really is which has compelled her to spend half a hundred years putting pen to paper.
Needless to say I stole the title for this talk, from George Orwell. One reason I stole it had been I write that I like the sound of the words: Why. There you have got three short words that are unambiguous share a sound, as well as the sound they share is it: I I I In many ways writing is the act of saying I, of imposing oneself upon other individuals, of saying pay attention to me, view it my way, replace your mind. It is an aggressive, even a act that is hostile. You are able to disguise its qualifiers and tentative subjunctives, with ellipses and evasions —with the whole method of intimating in the place of claiming, of alluding rather than stating—but there is no navigating around the truth that setting words on paper may be the tactic of a secret bully, an invasion, an imposition regarding the writer’s sensibility from the reader’s most space that is private. Read more