The Sound Words Make

She had a fancy new journal spread out on her desk and a not so fancy fountain pen in her hand. She wrote a sentence or two, nothing special, just to hear the sound of the pen against the paper.

She wasn’t thinking about her words. She was letting her troubled mind be soothed by sound.

Sometimes you think about what’s important and your brain floods you with answers, with hierarchies of answers.

But your heart? Well sometimes your heart just needs to be soothed by the sounds of the small things, like a pen leaving scratches on virgin paper.

Charles Bukowski’s Rules for Writing

1.

Give yourself time to mature as a writer.

“Well, I’m 34 now. If I don’t make it by the time I’m 60, I’m just going to give myself 10 more years.”

2.

Let your creativity find whatever outlet it needs.

“Now print my occasionals out by hand and point them up with drawings (like any other madman). Sometimes I just throw the stories away and hang the drawings up in the bathroom (sometimes on the roller).”

3.

Treat the submission of your work like it’s a job.

“I remember when I used to write and send [Story Magazine] fifteen or twenty or more stories a month, and later, three or four or five—and mostly, at least, one a week. From New Orleans and Frisco and Miami and L.A. and Philly and St. Louis and Atlanta and Greenwich Village and Houston and everyplace else.”

4.

Sometimes you have to write a lot of bad stuff to get to the good stuff.

“I’m not one to look back on wanton waste as complete loss—there’s music in everything, even defeat.”

5.

It’s ok to rely on magic.

“Went back to night school there about a year ago and took some art courses, commercial and otherwise but then too, they moved too slow for me and wanted too much obeisance. I have no definite talent or trade, and how I stay alive is largely a matter of magic.”

 

Read the full article from LitHub here

 

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