Tuesday, April 22, 2008
The Wise Woman of Earthsea
Working alone at a desk can be wonderful and it can be hard. Not as hard as lots of other things I've done, but still. What do you do when inspiration goes awol? Most often you look to other writers- ransack the bookshelves and the teetering piles on the desk. But there's often inspiration - and distractions - to be had online, on the phone, a quick coffee-therapy with another writer. And I like to dip into Ursula Le Guin's site ; it's like a brisk talking-to from a wise old auntie, if that's not too disrespectful. Full of nuggets of wisdom and insight. Aged 14, I submerged myself in her Earthsea books. That's a map of Earthsea above. I fled my life and a rainsodden Scottish summer on the windowseat of my local library. (Is it any wonder I ended up writing about an Earth all at sea?) I just read this on Sara O'Leary's site via the bookwitch, who just tagged me (see below).
Anyway, some wise words from Le Guin: "the writers who are my friends now are generous people with a strong sense of community. I keep away from writers who think art is a competition for fame, money, prizes, etc. What matters is the work."
Which sort of leads me onto bookwitch's 'tagging game' this morning. She does these things just to keep us off our work.
1. Pick up the nearest book.
2. Open to page 123
3. Find the fifth sentence.
4. Post the next three sentences.
5. Tag five people, and acknowledge who tagged you.
Okay, 6th sentence on p123 of my nearest book, Keith Gray's soon-to-be-published 'Ostrich Boys':
"'I pulled my rucksack closer to my feet, wrapped my legs around it as if to protect what was inside. At last Sim said: 'You know. Just...' 'O-kay. Dodgy question,' Joe said."
Wise woman Ursula would approve of Keith and it's a cracking read.
My chosen taggees, who might want to avoid some work by joining the blogchain (do steps I to 5 above) are: The Greenhouse, Julia Bell, Fidra, Notes from The Slushpile and Normblog.