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Thursday, February 9, 2023

'Always be writing something'


“Young writers reasonably say, 'I don't know what to write about,' so writing about yourself is a very literal way to begin.” – Susanna Moore

Author of the award winning memoir about growing up in Hawaii, I Myself Have Seen It: The Myth of Hawaii, Moore was born in 1945 in Bryn Mawr, PA before moving with her family to the Islands.  

Curiosity, she said, is a key to learning about your surroundings, and she spent hours listening to Hawaiian leaders and cultural figures tell about their heritage – tales that would help shape her own writing.

“As a girl, I sat awestruck at the feet of Harriet Ne, author of Tales of Molokai,” Moore said.  “It was she who used to say, 'I myself have seen it,' after telling a particularly hair-raising ghost story - a phrase that I borrowed for one of my titles.”
She started her career as a theater production and costume designer then moved over to the movie industry, working for a time as an assistant writer for Warren Beatty.  After doing some acting stints of her own, she turned to writing with her first novel, My Old Sweetheart, published in 1982.  Her latest is the 2020 nonfiction book  Miss Aluminum: A Memoir.   
Following in the footsteps of those who shared tales with her – she also became a noted creative writing teacher, lecturing at major universities like Yale, Princeton and the University of Adelaide in Australia. 

But, “Writing can't be taught.  The point always is to be writing something - it leads to more writing.”

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