Trillium Book Awards Author Reading 2015

Not Yet Ready For A Giller

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It’s a little cowing to be taking over as writer-in-residence from a predecessor who has won all kinds of writing awards. There ought to be an award for Writer Who Toils Without Recognition. Except that, of course, anyone who won such an award would automatically be disqualified from actually receiving it. Maybe we could get around this to some extent by not having an award ceremony but simply shipping the plaque or bowl or whatever to the winning author in a brown paper wrapper marked “Occupant.” Or, better still, with someone else’s name on it altogether.

Anyway, I cannot offer what is no doubt the thrill of reading blogs by an award-winning author, but what I can provide is inspirational quotes. I have many inspirational quotes. Frankly, you need them if you’re going to toil without recognition.

Beside my writing space are two bulletin boards festooned with inspirational quotes. More are taped onto the poster of Van Gogh’s sunflowers above my desk.

I propose that I share some inspirational quotes. Specifically, I suggest that I share ones that have something to do with the task and art of writing. In fact, forget about proposing. The position of writer-in-residence isn’t a democracy after all. This is what we’re going to do for the next few posts. Maybe more. Who knows? I’m approaching this as an unfolding process. Kind of a Zen blogging scenario. The whole thing’s organic. Which is all another way of saying I haven’t really thought out what I’m going to do yet.

Inspirational quote #1:

My current favorite is “Don’t make me come up there.” -Satan, but perhaps that doesnâ’t entirely qualify as inspirational.

I choose this:

”Creativity is a struggle, achieved laboriously, against overwhelming odds.”

I don’t know who said this but personally, I think they were being overly optimistic.

The largest part of creativity in writing is just getting yourself to the page. Just sitting there for as long as you can spare the time to sit. Maybe it’s eight hours a day. Maybe it’s twenty minutes. It doesn’t matter. Whole books have been written in twenty minutes a day.

The thing is, if you get up and do the laundry, you won’t write anything. If you sit in front of the page or computer screen, you might write a sentence. Of course the laundry will still need doing. But anyone who writes will tell you which is worth more. Me, I’d rather have that sentence than clean laundry. Or even an award.

The views expressed in the Writer-in-Residence blogs are those held by the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of Open Book: Toronto.

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Anne Hines

Anne Hines is the author of three novels, Fishing Up the Moon (Pedlar Press, 1998), The Spiral Garden (McArthur & Co, 2005) and Come Away: song of songs (McArthur & Co., 2007) and one collection of nonfiction humour, A Year In HineSight (McArthur & Co, 2002). A series of essays, Parting Gifts: notes on loss, love and life is due for publication by McArthur & Co, fall 2008.

Go to Anne Hines’s Author Page