Saturday, November 15, 2008

A useful antidote for literary prize stress

This wise quote from Tillie Olsen's SILENCES is courtesy of Michelle McGrane:

Literature is a place for generosity and affection and hunger for equals - not a prize-fight ring. We are increased, confirmed in our medium, roused to do our best, by every good writer, every fine achievement. Would we want one good writer or one good book less?


Paul Lisicky said...

Brilliant. This makes me want to reread SILENCES, which has probably been overshadowed by her other work.

lu said...

"Literature is a place for generosity and affection and hunger for equals..."

Yes, this is why I read, and I suppose this why I hack away at writing. I am no "writer" but one who writes as a means to find connections, to discover and make sense of this life.

Thank you, Thank you, Thank you.

(and I'd give you all the prizes)

I'm ever grateful and full of affection for the generosity of writers who embrace this purpose.

Michelle said...

Mark, Tillie Olsen sounded like such a wise woman. I'm determined to hunt down a copy of Silences on the strength of this quote. I'm sending positive vibes out into the universe for the National Book Award and the T.S. Eliot Prize.