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Sunday, January 25, 2015

Attached to life's corners


“Every secret of a writer’s soul, every experience of his life, every quality of his mind is written large in his works.” – Virginia Woolf


Born this day in 1882, English writer Virginia Woolf has often been credited with stream of consciousness writing alongside her modernist contemporaries James Joyce and Joseph Conrad.  Her writing had (and has) many admirers and probably an equal number of haters and in her own time was banned by some countries, including Adolf Hitler's Germany.    Her most well-known works are To The Lighthouse and A Room of One’s Own.  

  
Virginia Woolf

A great essayist as well as novelist, she once noted “A good essay must have this permanent quality about it; it must draw its curtain round us, but it must be a curtain that shuts us in not out.” 

But it was fiction writing where Woolf made her lasting mark and for which she is still studied today.  She said she found herself intrigued by and drawn into writing fiction because of how it so keenly wove together thoughts and reality.  “Fiction,” she said,  “is like a spider’s web, attached ever so slightly perhaps, but still attached to life at all four corners.  Often the attachment is scarcely perceptible.”