Taking thoughts captive

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Location: Midwest, United States

Favorite smells: mown hay, turned earth, summer rain, line-dried laundry

10 April 2006


My friend Angela and I met on Friday and discussed, among other things, creativity.

Angela and I met in the creative writing class that became the first step in my bachelor degree marathon. A marathon that will end, the good Lord willing, when I graduate from the University of Iowa on May 13.

In the nearly thirteen years since we first met, Angela and I have tried to meet about once a month. We began by meeting to critique each other's writing, and we sometimes still do that. We've had some long intervals between meetings, the most notable of which was the entire year that elapsed before our meeting last February. (We both had a lot of things going on in our lives last year.) The lapses don't seem to matter since she's one of those people with whom it's possible to immediately pick up from where we left off.

In our Friday discussion, we talked about how we've both grown increasingly convinced that creativity is not so much an innate gift as it is something that occasionally surfaces while slogging through hours of disciplined writing.

It's just like quality time with children. Quality time only materializes within the context of quantity time; it cannot be manufactured.

With that in mind, I'm trying to make more time for writing that isn't to meet a deadline. If I ever write a novel, I'd like it to stand on its own. I don't want to write a "teaser" novel for the CBA market with the idea of garnering a contract for two or three sequels. I'm sure there's money in that, but it just doesn't seem like literature in my mind.

I would rather forfeit financial gain and retain literary integrity.


Anonymous John said...

Salve, Glenda!

I would have sent this to you as an e-mail, but I can't recall your address and my old computer is still in storage until the renovations on our home are done and we finally get to move in.

Anyway, this Books and Culture review relates to what you were saying at the end of this blog entry. Here, apparently, is a recent Christian novel that doesn't follow the usual CBA approach.


4/18/06, 10:28 PM  

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