A (sort of) discourse on writing

24 June 2013 at 19:03 Leave a comment

Italo Calvino, “Quickness,” from Six Memos for the Next Millennium, trans. Patrick Creagh:

‘Discoursing,’ or ‘discourse,’ for Galileo means reasoning, and very often deductive reasoning. ‘Discoursing is like coursing’: this statement could be Galileo’s declaration of faith – style as a method of thought and as literary taste. For him, good thinking means quickness, agility in reasoning, economy in argument, but also the use of imaginative examples.

How do you contend with the hubris of thinking anyone has or should have any interest in what you have to say about anything?

Aschenbrand: I don’t.

Waldman: There are so many books written by men that lovingly detail their male hero’s romantic and sexual exploits as he conquers the big city with his intellect. I can live with the hubris of wanting to write an alternate account of this scenario in which I examined the protagonist’s treatment of women a little more skeptically.

Bruni: Equal measures of narcissism and humility seem absolutely essential to the act of opening one’s mouth to say anything at all. Some days privileging telling stories that exist in my head over so many other ways of engaging with the world in a more meaningful way produces plenty of guilt. Other days I see storytelling as one tool for creating empathy and identification between people. Which is a small thing. But it’s something.

Nutting: Caffeine. Prozac. Elastic waistband pants. Dog hair.


Entry filed under: writing.

writers and sociability the horror…

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T. Anderson Painter

I am a misanthrope. No one ever believes me, but this seems to prove my point.



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