A Writer's Moment: 'Companions in One's Life' : “Man was very fortunate to have invented the book. Without it, the past w...
A Writer's Moment: Ever Dreaming A New Dream : “You are never too old to set another goal, or to dream a new dream.”...
A Writer's Moment: 'We Write . . . Because We Can' : We write for the same reason that we walk, talk, clim...
A Writer's Moment: Learning Through Experience : “The world is the true classroom. The most rewarding and important type of learning is...
A Writer's Moment: Making Reading Fun : “Kids enjoy laughing and are seldom bored when they find something funny. They also ask questi...
“I envy those writers who outline their novels, who know where they’re going, but I find writing is a process of discovery.” – Jay McIner...
Friday, March 24, 2023
A Writer's Moment: 'Artistic expression for its own time'
'Artistic expression for its own time'
Fo’s writings – translated into 30 languages – address issues ranging from dictatorial brutality to AIDS, religion, organized crime, and “military actions.” His satire, he said, can be adapted to unjust situations throughout the world. “Satire can always be found everywhere. A people without love for satire is a dead people.”
Thursday, March 23, 2023
A Writer's Moment: 'Believeably involved, emotionally invested'
'Believeably involved, emotionally invested'
Her advice to new writers is first write for the love of it. “If you make best-sellerdom your goal, you're going to be in trouble. It's a very nice thing to have happen, but if one makes that a goal like, say, a literary writer has the goal of getting the Pulitzer Prize, that's so unpredictable.”
Wednesday, March 22, 2023
A Writer's Moment: 'Putting brains to work'
'Putting brains to work'
“One of the nice things about books as opposed to television and movies … is people really do get involved, and they do create, and they do have their own visions of what different characters look like and what should happen. It’s great. It means their brains are working.” – James Patterson
Tuesday, March 21, 2023
A Writer's Moment: 'Create a network in readers' minds'
'Create a network in readers' minds'
Monday, March 20, 2023
A Writer's Moment: He made goodness attractive
He made goodness attractive
“Knowing that we can be loved exactly as we are gives us all the best opportunity for growing into the healthiest of people.” – Fred Rogers
Probably no other man had as much impact on children’s television as Fred McFeely Rogers, born this date in 1928 and famous, of course, for creating and hosting Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood on PBS.
Initially planning to be a minister, Rogers found himself displeased with how television addressed children and made an effort to write things that could cause change. In the process he became an indelible icon of children’s entertainment and education, as well as a symbol of compassion, morality and morality.
At the time of his death (from cancer in 2003) he had been honored with some 40 honorary degrees, a Peabody Award for his writing, and the Presidential Medal of Freedom. He also was inducted into the Television Hall of Fame, the first “Children’s Advocate” so named.
Rogers also became the first kids’ TV host to testify before Congress and get that grumpy group to support TV programming for kids and provide funding for it as well. Honored with two Congressional resolutions, he is ranked among the 35 Greatest TV Stars of All Time.
“Try your best to make goodness attractive,” Rogers advised. “That’s one of the toughest assignments you’ll ever be given.”
Saturday, March 18, 2023
A Writer's Moment: A 'hidden conspiracy of good will'
A 'hidden conspiracy of good will'
“The mature man lives quietly, does good privately, takes responsibility for his actions, treats others with friendliness and courtesy, finds mischief boring and avoids it. Without the hidden conspiracy of good will, society would not endure an hour.” – Kenneth Rexroth
Born in 1905, American poet, translator and critical essayist Rexroth laid the groundwork for what would become the 1950s beat movement. Dubbed the "Father of the Beats" by Time, he was among the first U.S. poets to explore Asian styles and co-created an anthology of Chinese women poets titled The Orchid Boat.
For Saturday’s Poem here is Rexroth’s,
Yin and Yang
It is Spring once more in the Coast
Warm, perfumed, under the Easter moon.
The flowers are back in their places.
The birds are back in their usual trees.
The winter stars set in the ocean.
The summer stars rise from the mountains.
The air is filled with atoms of quicksilver.
Resurrection envelops the earth.
Goemetrical, blazing, deathless,
Animals and men march through heaven,
Pacing their secret ceremony.
The Lion gives the moon to the Virgin.
She stands at the crossroads of heaven,
Holding the full moon in her right hand,
A glittering wheat ear in her left.
The climax of the rite of rebirth
Has ascended from the underworld
Is proclaimed in light from the zenith.
In the underworld the sun swims
Between the fish called Yes and No.
Thursday, March 16, 2023
A Writer's Moment: 'The pleasure of writing fiction'
'The pleasure of writing fiction'
Wednesday, March 15, 2023
A Writer's Moment: Editing copy to perfection
Editing copy to perfection
Tuesday, March 14, 2023
A Writer's Moment: 'Never stop questioning'
'Never stop questioning'
“The true sign of intelligence is not knowledge, but imagination.” – Albert Einstein
Today is a day Einstein would have enjoyed. It’s National Pi Day, named for the mathematical constant that’s the ratio of the distance around a circle to the circle’s diameter. This produces a number, and that number is always 3.141592653 . . . continuing without end but always the same numbers. It's quite helpful in solving problems or making discoveries.
Celebrating National Pi Day on 3-14 makes sense because the first three numbers are, of course, 3-14. I think Einstein would especially like National Pi Day (something that wasn’t celebrated while he was still alive) because it also falls on his birthday. Einstein (born in 1879) probably would have had as much fun with that as anyone because he often showed that he had a great sense of humor to go along with his brainy abilities.
He once noted that people should never kiss and drive at the same time. Because, he added, then you aren't giving the kiss the proper amount of attention. He also said – probably with a bit too much modesty – that he didn’t keep a notebook of his great ideas because “I’ve only ever had one."
A final note from Einstein: “Learn from yesterday, live for today, and hope for tomorrow. The important thing is not to stop questioning.”
Monday, March 13, 2023
A Writer's Moment: 'Hitchhiking' into writing fame
'Hitchhiking' into writing fame
Saturday, March 11, 2023
A Writer's Moment: All the sounds of Spring
All the sounds of Spring
“Like a piece of ice on a hot stove a poem must ride on its own melting ... Read it a hundred times, it will forever keep its freshness as a metal keeps its fragrance. It can never lose its sense of a meaning that once unfolded by surprise as it went.”
– Robert Frost
I almost always think of Robert Frost’s poetry when I hear or see things in nature. This morning, unlike the bird that bothers Frost in his short poem below, the bird near our house is not singing off-key but, instead, just creating angry noise.
But I decided a noisy bird is still better than no bird. I just wish, like the bird Frost is annoyed with in his poem, it would work a little on its singing. For Saturday’s Poem, here is Frost’s,
A Minor Bird
I have wished a bird would fly away,
And not sing by my house all day;
Have clapped my hands at him from the door
When it seemed as if I could bear no more.
The fault must partly have been in me.
The bird was not to blame for his key.
And of course there must be something wrong
In wanting to silence any song.
Friday, March 10, 2023
A Writer's Moment: 'The heart and core of ages past'
'The heart and core of ages past'
Thursday, March 9, 2023
A Writer's Moment: Writing songs for the heart
Writing songs for the heart
“In the music industry, we value large success. I realized that while I would like that, that it's not what my writing is about. And if I start making it about that, it becomes impure. I think of my songs as there to be something to move people emotionally.”
Wednesday, March 8, 2023
A Writer's Moment: 'The pages that sell your book'
'The pages that sell your book'
Tuesday, March 7, 2023
A Writer's Moment: 'Each is like a thousand words'
'Each is like a thousand words'
Monday, March 6, 2023
A Writer's Moment: Shaping tales from the natural world
Shaping tales from the natural world
Saturday, March 4, 2023
A Writer's Moment: 'A call to action'
'A call to action'
can tell us about what's going on in our lives - not only our personal but our
social and political lives.” –
Juan Felipe Herrera
Born in 1948, the child of migrant farmers, Herrera served as U. S. Poet Laureate from 2015-17. Among his many awards are the Ezra Jack Keats award for Calling the Doves, and the National Book Critics Circle Award in Poetry for Half the World in Light. “Poetry is a call to action," he said. "And it also is action.” For Saturday’s Poem, here is Herrera’s,
Let Me Tell You What A Poem Brings
you go further,
let me tell you what a poem brings,
first, you must know the secret, there is no poem
to speak of, it is a way to attain a life without boundaries,
yes, it is that easy, a poem, imagine me telling you this,
instead of going day by day against the razors, well,
the judgments, all the tick-tock bronze, a leather jacket
sizing you up, the fashion mall, for example, from
the outside you think you are being entertained,
when you enter, things change, you get caught by surprise,
your mouth goes sour, you get thirsty, your legs grow cold
standing still in the middle of a storm, a poem, of course,
is always open for business too, except, as you can see,
it isn't exactly business that pulls your spirit into
the alarming waters, there you can bathe, you can play,
you can even join in on the gossip—the mist, that is,
the mist becomes central to your existence.