Today’s quote come to us from the poet Julie Larios. I had the great good fortune to have Julie as my advisor during my last semester at Vermont College of Fine Arts. Her honesty and her love of good writing pushed me way out on the bendy branches and I have to say the view is much better out here.
When I asked her what quote inspires her as a writer or shores her up in hard times, she gave me not one or two but four. Maybe I should parse them out. Tease you weekly. But no, let’s have a feast.
The first comes from Wm. Somerset Maugham:
“There are three rules to writing a novel and nobody knows what they are.”
“I don’t have any anecdote about this one,” says Julie. “I just love it because it’s so true.”
Next is a Chinese proverb:
“The miracle is not to fly in the air, or to walk on the water, but to walk on the earth.”
Says Julie, “This one reminds me that imagination is nice, but the real world is just as marvelous. I use it as the guiding epigraph for my blog…and maybe for my life.”
The next quote comes from her father, John Hofstrand:
“This is written in my father’s handwriting across one of the business cards given to him by his university. He wrote it there when he retired, about two years before he died – “Gone fishin'” – I love that. I keep it in my desk drawer and take it out once in awhile to look at it. It inspires me to get out of the house, stop working, live in the world. How can people hope to be writers if they sit at a desk all day trying to make things up? You’ve got to get out there and live your life, meet people, stroll, stop to listen to the music, see your kids, smell the roses. You’ve got to go fishin’.
And finally, this quote from Mary Cornish:
“It has to come from some place authentic.”
“My sister said this to me, kind of casually, one day when we were talking about heart (feeling) vs. head (intellect.) That quick sentence struck me like lightning. I suddenly realized that I had been spending so much time being “clever” with words and forms in my poetry, I hadn’t been thinking about whether I even meant what I said. I resolved to ask myself “Does it come from some place authentic?” with each poem after that.”
Personally, I wish I lived down the street from Julie so we could take some ‘gone fishin’ strolls together. Because I don’t, I read her blog The Drift Record and take virtual strolls. Recently Julie had a few poems published on line at Numero Cinq. Go read them for dessert.