Sunday, November 04, 2007

John Irving

"The test of any accomplishment is how self-critical you can be. If you can’t be self-critical, you may do something that’s pretty good but you’ll never be able to make it any better ... if you’re not able to ... attack your first effort and break it down and build it up." ~ John Irving

I love that word, "attack." I constantly attack my work. It’s enjoyable, even! Sometimes aggravating. But if you don’t keep pushing yourself, then how are you going to get better? The day I can’t see my faults is the day I’ll fear I can’t get any better.

The link above has a full-length interview, starting at about the twenty minute mark. The video below is just a short dose of inspiration on being a "craftsman." There’s more John Irving here.

4 bonus scribbles:

Erica Orloff 11/05/2007 07:23:00 AM  

he's one of my favorite writers. Ciderhouse Rules still makes me cry.


Edie 11/05/2007 08:06:00 AM  

I love the revision too. It's my chance to find all the glitches, even if it means I have to tear it apart and throw out whole chapters. And it's my chance to make my writing shine.

Therese 11/06/2007 10:37:00 AM  

Brilliant bit from Irving--thanks for bringing it to our attention.

He really gets it right!

spyscribbler 11/06/2007 05:10:00 PM  

Yeah, Erica, me too! To both statements!

Edie, I revise as I go, so I mix it all up into one process, kinda. I like that polishing bit, too!

Hey, Therese! Yeah, I wish I could get it that right!