Monday, June 25, 2007

into a darkened room

de la Tour

In an interview for Narrative Magazine, Ann Beattie described her writing process:

Beattie relies on spontaneity and surprise, avoiding all thought of formal elements. “If I did give it a moment’s thought,” she says, “I couldn’t write the story. I don’t like to know in advance what I’m writing. It can be like going into a darkened room and
not turning the light on. You guess what the shapes are, you think you’ve stumbledinto the pantry, not the bedroom, but you don’t want to put the light on because fora minute it’s ambiguous in a very interesting way. In those seconds that elapse,
you’ve already integrated a lot of things, maybe some of them incorrectly, but you already know the large shapes, where things are vis-à-vis each other.”

sort of like...dreaming?


Liesl said...

How reassuring to read this. So much of writing for me is a stumbling about and probing the dark!

Thanks for the reminder.

Maryanne said...

I don't believe there is "one way" to write; however, stumbling around in the dark is as good a description of the creative process as I can think of.