Tag Archives: learning

Round-trip Ticket to a Dead Authors’ House

"I had a great time!"

“I had a great time!”

Every week I look for quotes that might fit in the theme of each blog. I’ve tried searching by topic, sorting through platitude jungles and subway tunnels of inane feel-goodery. This time I’ve switched tactics a bit. I started knocking on the doors of the distant and the dead: the authors themselves.

Weird? You bet; but that’s one of our many Writers’ Superpowers.

Sometimes when I get stuck, I’ll sit and talk to my characters. We’ll ramble on together for ten or twenty pages about their lives, their histories, and what interests them. Sometimes we talk over iced tea in the yard, and sometimes we sit in a very dark room.

We’re lucky to have teachers in both places. I can get a lot of story-specific help from my characters. I can also get a lot of writing help, life help, and logistical help by reading not just books, but quotes and interviews. Their office doors are wide open.

As writers, we already know how to travel like this. We can hop from one world into another without passports or booking fees. We can slip through time and sit at Marcus Aurelius’ knee, or split a milkshake with an evolved human made of dust particles and psychic energy. Most people won’t understand this; but that doesn’t make it not real. We can travel. We are special. Just reach out and go.

I’ve often lost myself,
in order to find the burn that keeps everything awake.

― Federico García Lorca


If we find ourselves with a desire that nothing in this world can satisfy, the most probable explanation is that we were made for another world.”
― C.S. Lewis


Do not let your fire go out, spark by irreplaceable spark in the hopeless swamps of the not-quite, the not-yet, and the not-at-all. Do not let the hero in your soul perish in lonely frustration for the life you deserved and have never been able to reach. The world you desire can be won. It exists.. it is real.. it is possible.. it’s yours.”
― Ayn Rand



Today is my Birthday. Teach me something.

Today I become a newly-minted 28-year-old. Share with me some wisdom or a funny story. Teach me something!