What is a writing life?
- Does it involve endless suffering?
- Is it liberating?
- Do you think that suffering for art is pretentious?
- Is writing something that you love to do, but you don't struggle?
- Is writing a pragmatic skill you use to make a living?
Here are some random comments from goodreads about the writing of Annie Dillard.
Comment by Dolors
This is a brief yet intense essay on the art, or as Dillard would say, the burden of writing that will delight readers and aspiring writers alike.
Writing is a way of life, and Dillard’s relationship with words is, to say the least, controversial.
Her lucid ponderings on the obsessive nature of those who devote their lives to squeeze the world out into sentences, limited by expression and linguistic patterns, are as petrifying as they are eye-opening…
Comment by Jillian Haas
Annie Dillard wrote a brutally honest description of her relationship and struggles with the process of writing. Instead of the usual advice about showing, not telling, etc that I see etched inside my eyelids, as I read The Writing Life, I was compelled to copy its poetic quotes on note cards that I'll use as bookmarks…
I have a love/hate thing with this book. On the one hand, it's a brilliant poetic evocation of the creative process. On the other, the process is so romanticized and the examples exalt such a rarified form of extreme self-sacrifice that I half-suspect Dillard is trying to discourage and/or sabotage future generations. It's a five star meal with a dash of arsenic. Approach with caution…