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On Writing: So that’s why people look at me differently February 18, 2009

Posted by William Spear in >> Out Basket, >> Playwriting.
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Writing defies many descriptions; its elusive nature is also a large part of its pleasure. From an inside perspective, writing is as natural as breathing or eating.

However, from the outside looking in, writing is akin to an evil alchemy which consumes its practitioners and forces them into loathsome habits and characteristics. Alcoholism, melancholia, and paranoia seem to be the most oft-quoted sterotypes.

Even the New York Times chimes in on an artist’s perception from the community in its Edvard Munch article titled “So Typecast You Could Scream” (By Roberta Smith on February 12, 2009):

Society tends to prefer creative types who neatly fit the pigeonhole labeled Other. The artist as solitary, tormented, possibly insane genius is among the most durable staples of the modern imagination.”

That explains a lot of things.

What else other than insanity might drive us to re-write a play a dozen times just to make one sentence stronger? What rational explanation might a dramatist offer to share insight on pairing a movie star staging a comeback with an assistant manager of a tailoring shop? What logic might be the backdrop for continuing to write during weeks in which more rejections are recieved than hours slept?

Different, possibly. Off center, probably. Not so sure about insane, though. Unless you count the time . . .

William E. Spear
Publisher and Producer
Lit Between the Ears

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