Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Hemingway's Metaphorical Advice for New Writers

Interviewer: What would you consider the best intellectual training for the would-be writer?

Ernest Hemingway: Let's say that he should go out and hang himself because he finds that writing well is impossibly difficult. Then he should be cut down without mercy and forced by his own self to write as well as he can for the rest of his life. At least he will have the story of the hanging to commence with.
--From p. 42 of The Paris Review Interviews, Vol. 1.(Philip Gourevitch, ed.)

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J. C. said...

How very sad there was no one to cut him down in 1961.

Benjamin Chambers said...

Yes, that particular comment has terrible resonance, considering.

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