Right at the end of 2014, my first freelance book review went live (you can read my thoughts on MEMOIRS OF A MUSE at Fig Tree Books here). Writing book reviews is a challenge for me, so it felt great to see this one reach publication. The key to such success–in this project and (I’m sure) in most writing–is a great editor. Erika Dreifus (Media Editor at Fig Tree Books) is such a person: friendly and professional and a woman with a keen eye. If you’re interested in writing reviews, check out Fig Tree Books and their Freelance Review Project.
Speaking of the challenges we writers face, Paul Auster offers some great advice in this video, “How I Became a Writer.” One of my favorite quotes (about eight minutes in) reminds me that writing is more about exploration than perfection:
When I was younger, I wanted to make beautiful things. And then, as I got older and more experienced in [writing], I understood that’s not what it’s about. The essence of being an artist is to confront the thing you’re trying to do, to tackle it head on. And if, in wrestling with these things, you manage to make something that’s good, well…it will have its own beauty. But, it’s not a kind of beauty that you can predict. It’s nothing you can strive for. What you have to strive for is to engage with your material as deeply as you can.
The whole video is less than twenty minutes and well worth your time as you broach a new year of writing.
The Phrase I Will Repeat Most
Write more. Bitch less.
On that note, zip your lip, grab your pen and paper, get on that story.