The Saturday Writing Quote

“What interests me is the complex of conditions that makes being human fascinating. Most significantly the war between selfishness and compassion, or the all-too-often screaming gap between the way we are and the way we want to be. That’s where horror is, along with comedy, imagination, love.”

– Glen Duncan, British novelist, The Writer, June 2014

The Saturday Writing Quote — the telling detail

“In my experience, a writer is best served by creating characters who are either insiders or outsiders in a place. That is, the authority comes from either being incredibly intimate with the location, or with being a total newcomer. In either instance, a single telling detail can make everything else leap into relief around it.”

– short story writer and novelist Antonya Nelson, The Writer, Sept 2010

The Saturday Writing Quote — on empathy

“Writing stories is not, despite appearances, about spending lots of time with oneself. It’s about learning to be able to look beyond the self, beyond the ego, to enter other lives and other worlds, It’s about honing one’s sense of empathy so that a story might bridge the gap between the personal and the communal.”

– Anthony Doerr, The Writer, Oct 2014