Today my friends, I share with you a very important blog post, one that holds a special meaning in my heart.
A post celebrating the 1000th occasion I have taken the time to sit down at my desk (or in my car, or anywhere else in the world for that matter) to address myself to you dear followers through this unique and amazing platform.
I did not realize it until now, until I am writing these very words, but the book that I am about to talk to you about is somewhat like my second Bible. I have read it so many times and I continue to learn from it and appreciate it every time I open it. Needless to say, this exuberant publication is from MY all-time favorite author, Ray Bradbury.
Zen in the Art of Writing
is so much more than a how-to guide for the would-be writer: it is a celebration of the art of writing itself with its amazing collection of tips, anecdotes, reflections and secrets that will inevitably inspire the author in you...
So, let's begin, shall we. Following a breathtaking preface, ZITAOW
is divided in 10 fantastic chapters (I will only comment on 9, leaving out ...On Creativity
1- In Joy of Writing, Bradbury begins his journey with two words that have a really special correlation between them: zest and gusto. He explains how these two very important tools are essential in a writer's make-up. How can we, writers, pretend to do our work without fun, passion, love, and excitement?
Ignite, explode, disintegrate in hope that your joy will seek and find others in the world who, reading your story, will catch on fire too...
2- Run Fast, Stand Still, or, the Thing at the Top of the Stairs, or, New Ghosts from Old Minds — This is such a fascinating chapter. The one with the word lists. This has to be my favorite part of the book. Bradbury wrote titles on a blank page, and hour later a brand new fresh story was born. Bradbury explains that he wrote a thousand words a day, every day from the age of twelve on. Fueled by this word-association technique, he has been one of the most prolific writers who ever walked the Earth.
3- How to Keep and Feed a Muse — Everyday we eat and drink. We also nourish ourselves with sounds, smells, images, and textures. So, the Muse, feeding on all these items that are stored in our minds, inspires us in our writings. But the secret in not only to find our muse, but to feed it and keep it in tip top shape. One of Bradbury's solutions : write a thousand words per day, every day, thus keeping the doctor away... Read, write, breathe.
4- Drunk, and in Charge of a Bicycle — In this chapter, Bradbury talks about his passion for monsters, skeletons, circuses, carnivals, and, of course, the Red Planet, Mars. He tells us never to let go of what makes who we really are, no matter what age. If not, there is no fun, no zest, no gusto, no flavor. He recollects the amazing story of his Buck Rogers comic strips collection: how his friends made him throw it away because of embarrassment and how he went back to collecting them, sending them all to Hell. He also tells us about his strange and uplifting encounter with Mr. Electrico, and how that also changed his life forever. And, lastly, he brings example about how the stories built up in his mind based on his passions.
5- Investing Dimes : Fahrenheit 451 — From 1941 - 1950, Bradbury had done most of his typing in the family garages, but when his girls got older he needed his own place to write all his wonderful stories. This chapter tells us about how/where he wrote F451 in the typing room in the basement of the library at the University of California (Los Angeles), surrounded by millions of words and books.
What a place, don't you agree, to write a novel about burning books in the future!
6- Just this side of Byzantium — Dandelion Wine is a book about growing up, and this chapter tells us more about his word-association process.
7- On the Shoulders of Giants — Why in the past was fantasy and science fiction neglected? And who is responsible for the change? The students. The young people. The Children. Thus, for the first time ever in the history of art and teaching, the students have become the teachers. Bradbury genuinely illustrates the change and how this transformation took place. How the pyramid shifted...
8- The Secret Mind — This chapter is about adapting Bradbury at the theater. His own questionings about it and the reverse of the old tale.
Everyone except me is having fun adapting me! How come?!
9- Zen in the Art of Writing — Educate yourself about the art of writing. Feed your passion with easy guidelines. Up your game. WORK. RELAXATION. DON'T THINK. Love yourself and your writing...
There you have it... My very own appreciation of a book that inspires me every time I look at its cover — imagine what happens when I actually open it... for I know of its content. I know how it can nourish my soul and make me want to become a better writer because of it.
God bless Mr. Bradbury, the catalyst, wherever u are!
Muzik pairing :
The Fly / U2
Labels: Bouillon de Kulture, Libromania