Woolf’s words of wisdom

13 Jul

Started a new writing project today. Reminds me, of course, of something Woolf once wrote in The Waves:

Now begins to rise in me the familiar rhythm; words that have lain dormant now lift, now toss their crests, and fall and rise, and falls again. I am a poet, yes. Surely I am a great poet.

Now, how long will this feeling last? Considering I quit my last project after only writing several short-shorts, perhaps not long. But then again, perhaps this is how I always end up (another quote from The Waves):

I begin to long for some little language such as lovers use, broken words, inarticulate words, like the shuffling of feet on pavement.

In the end, isn’t that all we can really (somehow) ask for?

Another great quote on writing from The Waves:

That would be a glorious life, to addict oneself to perfection; to follow the curve of the sentence wherever it might lead, into deserts, under drifts of sand, regardless of lures, of seductions; to be poor always and unkempt; to be ridiculous in Piccadilly.

Ridiculous in Piccadilly indeed. I would happily be ridiculous in Piccadilly. Will someone fund a grant to travel there? Purpose of travel: dire need to be ridiculous.

And then, when you lose the line of the story (as I, so early in the project, seem to have done), you just push forward, pretending, perhaps that you know more than you do:

Let us again pretend that life is a solid substance, shaped like a globe, which we turn about in our fingers. Let us pretend that we can make out a plain and logical story, so that when one matter is dispatched—love for instance—we go on, in an orderly manner, to the next.

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2 Responses to “Woolf’s words of wisdom”

  1. E. J. Taylor July 13, 2012 at 2:42 am #

    I love this post. Love. It.

    • kristinareardon July 14, 2012 at 7:37 am #

      Have you ever read The Waves?

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