While down here at this conference, I’ve started to make a very bold and, yes, probably very obvious link between my interest in writing and my work with expectant/new mothers through my childbirth preparation program, Pregnancy to Parenthood.
Just as a woman spends months (and years, sometimes) preparing for motherhood; growing the child within, cultivating her own maternal instincts from some previously unknown source, so it is, too, for a writer: the birth of a novel, poem, memoir or screenplay is very much a work of slow and methodical gestation that, when released into the world is both a traumatic and exhilarating event. This, of course, if why writers call their craft “art.” And can we say anything less for our children?
Here are some of my favorite quotes from the conference today:
“The idea that good dialog mirrors actual dialog is a lie.” – Erin McGraw (EM)
“That’s one well-deployed adverb!” – EM
“All [published] books need the blessing of the two high priests: marketing and promotion.” – Lit. Agent powerhouse Richard Abate (RA) speaking of how well a book will based on how much marketing/publicity is put behind it.
Re: memoir ~ “The bar gets set higher each year. Has your life been so miserable that it trumps what came before it?” – RA
‘It is over time that we become willing to share our scars with our lovers.’ – workshop participant
” After the roller coaster ride of publishing your first book…then you feel a quiet joy.” – Elizabeth Searle (ES)
“I finally realized, I wasn’t always going to please everyone with what I wrote.” – Danzy Senna (DS)
“It’s not about my writing as a product, it’s about my life as an artist.” – DS
“Every writer is a survivor of despair.” – C.E. Poverman
“Every writer who’s published a book has about three more on the floor that the dog’s sitting on.” – C.E.P
“All the young dudes carry the news.” – Elizabeth Pearle quoting David Bowie