Saturday, May 25, 2024

Quote of the Day (William Kennedy, on the ‘Precarious’ Trip From Writing Journalism to Fiction)

“The transition from journalism to fiction is always a precarious trip, for journalism foists dangerous illusions on the incipient fiction writer. The daily journalist is trained, for instance, to forget about yesterday and focus on today. There is also a car parked downstairs, ready to carry him off into tomorrow, and so every new day becomes for him a tabula rasa. This is deadly. The fiction writer who puts little or no value on yesterday, or the even more distant past, might just as well have Alzheimer's disease. Serious fiction, especially the novel, has time as its essence and memory as its principal tool.”—Pulitzer Prize-winning American novelist (and former journalist) William Kennedy, “Why It Took So Long,” The New York Times, May 20, 1990

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