Saturday Creativity Quote — reaching through the veil

Trees in the Mist, photo by Leslie Budewitz

I’m a big fan of the group blog Writer Unboxed, where more than 30 authors share advice on the craft and business of writing, and on motivation and inspiration. On the surface, this quote seems to speak mainly to authors of fantasy or magical novels, but I think it says more than that. It touches on a point I’ve often made here, that our work should say something true, something not immediately visible. Something you have to quiet your own mind and listen to the world to grasp, and to figure out how to express.

“Where do writers get their ideas? Sure, we might just be making it all up. But what if a writer is the only point of contact with an urgently real-in-its-way world that’s hidden from all others? We rub the membrane thin, and story leaks out. Or maybe we raise our lightning rods, and story flashes down our arms and onto the page. Or we open a door, and the ideas rush in. Choose your metaphor, but in every case, it is your role as a writer to document those moments of connection. Without your books, other worlds remain obscured. Without you, we will never be transported to the time and place that you alone can find.”
— Kristen Hacken South, “Thin Places,” on Writer Unboxed