Dec 14, 2015
Talking about creation and destruction go hand-in-hand. And I think that writers play a special part in not only conveying the destruction of the present, but creating the future.
Makers gonna make, yo. Let's do this together in episode 031 of
the Write Now podcast.
Creation, destruction, & writing.
Destruction is hard to talk about -- it's so deeply tied with loss and grief and pain. But it's a reality that we as writers have to deal with, whether it's the latest in a string of mass shootings, the bulldozing of a beloved local forest, or an illness that's ravaging the body or mind of someone dear to us.
Today's episode is based on a quote that I love by Maxine Hong
"In a time of destruction, create something."
-- Maxine Hong Kingston
And so when we're in the midst of a time of destruction, a long and vast stretch of wilderness, I think what matters is how we respond to it.
Because we are powerful, creative beings. I've said it before and I'll say it again until the day I die -- words have power. The power to create and the power to destroy. The power to expose truth and shape the future.
The world is changing. Let's change it for the better, together.
Book of the week.
The book this week? The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins.
What did I think? Well, I'm never one for hype -- back when the movie "Juno" came out, approximately 1.3 million people told me how much I'd love it, and when I finally got around to seeing this movie that was "MADE FOR ME" and would "CHANGE MY LIFE", according to everyone else... it was good, but it didn't quite live up to the hype.
This book, much like "Juno" and Gillian Flynn's somewhat comparable Gone Girl, came to me with a similar amount of hype. So I went into it with a fair amount of trepidation.
And for the first couple chapters, I was disappointed. The book seemed to be about a bitter British woman who rode around on a train staring out at the world around her.
But. I sallied forth to give it a fair chance, and soon found myself lost in a wonderfully subtle psychological mystery that didn't so much smack you in the face as creep under your skin.
Because you are the narrator. Even if you're not an unemployed alcoholic who commutes via train. You are her. And you get to learn with her and grow with her and develop at an extremely well thought out and strategic pace.
This book has been compared to Gone Girl because it's subtle and psychological and full of murder. But I think it stands very well on its own. I think you'll enjoy the slow-burning character development, the recurring themes, the artful writing, and the sweetly optimistic ending.
Recommended to folks who don't mind taking a harrowing journey with a flawed heroine, who appreciate a solid murder mystery, and who don't mind a bit of sex and violence in the mix.
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What do you think?
What destruction are you facing today? What is your wilderness? Have you tried using writing to overcome it? How has it worked for you -- or against you? I'd love to hear your thoughts.
Submit your insights, comments, or questions on my
contact page, or simply email me at hello [at] sarahwerner
[dot] com. I look forward to hearing from you.
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