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Saturday, September 25, 2021

A Writer's Moment: Collaborating With His Public

A Writer's Moment: Collaborating With His Public:   “A poet should always be 'collaborating' with his public, but this public, in the mass, cannot make itself heard, and he has to gu...

Collaborating With His Public

 “A poet should always be 'collaborating' with his public, but this public, in the mass, cannot make itself heard, and he has to guess at its requirements and its criticisms.”  Louis MacNeice


Irish poet MacNeice’s body of work was widely appreciated by the public during his lifetime (1907-63), due in part to his relaxed, but socially and emotionally aware style.   He was part of the generation called the Auden Group, also sometimes known as the "Thirties poets,” that included W. H. Auden, Stephen Spender and Cecil Day-Lewis (father of renowned actor Daniel Day-Lewis).

Here for Saturday’s Poem is a poem MacNeice plaintively wrote on the occasion of his 50th  birthday.

Star-Gazer
Forty-two years ago (to me if to no one else
The number is of some interest) it was a brilliant starry night
And the westward train was empty and had no corridors
So darting from side to side I could catch the unwonted sight
Of those almost intolerably bright
Holes, punched in the sky, which excited me partly because
Of their Latin names and partly because I had read in the textbooks
How very far off they were, it seemed their light
Had left them (some at least) long years before I was.

And this remembering now I mark that what
Light was leaving some of them at least then,
Forty-two years ago, will never arrive
In time for me to catch it, which light when
It does get here may find that there is not
Anyone left alive
To run from side to side in a late night train
Admiring it and adding thoughts in vain.

Friday, September 24, 2021

A Writer's Moment: Writing 'Close to Her Heart'

A Writer's Moment: Writing 'Close to Her Heart':   “What it takes is to actually write: not to think about it, not to imagine it, not to talk about it, but to actually want to sit down and ...

Writing 'Close to Her Heart'

 “What it takes is to actually write: not to think about it, not to imagine it, not to talk about it, but to actually want to sit down and write. I'm lucky I learned that habit a really long time ago. I credit my mother with that. She was an English teacher, but she was a writer.” – Luanne Rice


Rice has been a regular on the New York Times’ Bestseller List, her work translated into 26 languages and many made into movies – including for TV’s “Hallmark Hall of Fame.” 

Her novels - among which are The Lemon Orchard, Little Night, The Silver Boat, and Sandcastles - deal with love, family, nature and the sea.  Born in New Britain, CT, on Sept. 25, 1955 Rice got into writing early and had her first published poem (in the Hartford Courant) at age 11.  Her first short story was published in American Girl magazine when she was 15, and her debut novel, Angels All Over Town, at age 30.

As a just-beginning novelist, Rice was married to a law student and would sit in on lectures on criminal law and evidence, mesmerized by how the cases would unfold and getting ideas for her writing.  From that she developed a research and writing style that have led to her remarkable success. 
 
Luanne Rice

She said she enjoys doing research and also writes down her dreams – both of which make up parts of her work.  But, she said, she bases many characters on the real people she has met and is inspired by.  “While novels are fiction, mine are usually very close to my heart.”  
 
 
 

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Thursday, September 23, 2021

A Writer's Moment: It's That 'Realness' Factor

A Writer's Moment: It's That 'Realness' Factor:   “Good fiction must be entertaining, but what makes fiction special - and True - is that the realness of a novel allows it to carry a large...

It's That 'Realness' Factor

 “Good fiction must be entertaining, but what makes fiction special - and True - is that the realness of a novel allows it to carry a larger message.” – Jerry B. Jenkins

 

Jenkins, born in Michigan on this date in 1949, might be best known for the Left Behind series, written for Tim LaHaye.  But overall, Jenkins has written more than 200 books in multiple genres ranging from biography and self-help to mystery and young adult fiction.

 

Writing from an early age, Jenkins covered high school sports for local newspapers even before he could drive, being paid $1 per column inch.  In college, he served as night news editor for the radio station WMBI, owned by the Moody Institute, where he became Vice President of its publishing division in 1985.  He’s been a writer-in-residence there from 1988 onward.

 

In addition to his novels, he’s done “as told to" personality books on athletes and religious leaders like Hank Aaron, Joe Gibbs, Mike Singletary and Sammy Tippit.   Twenty-one of his books have been New York Times bestsellers, and many of his stories have appeared in magazines like Time, Reader's Digest, Parade, and Guideposts.

 

“Writers write,” he noted of his prolific career.  “Dreamers talk about it.”

 

 

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Wednesday, September 22, 2021

A Writer's Moment: 'No Second Acts'

A Writer's Moment: 'No Second Acts':   “My idea is always to reach my generation. The wise writer writes for the youth of his own generation, the critics of the next, and the sc...