Imagination doesn't just mean making things up. It means thinking things through, solving [problems] or hoping to do so, and being just distant enough to be able to laugh at things that are normally painful. [Some people] would call this escapism, but they would be be entirely wrong. I would call fantasy the most serious, and the most useful branch of writing there is.
--Diana Wynne Jones

Friday, April 10, 2009

Some thoughts on wilderness and fiction

Continuing the wilderness theme of a couple posts back, here's a quote by Wallace Stegner:

"We simply need that wild country available to us, even if we never do more than drive to its edge and look in. For it can be a means of reassuring ourselves of our sanity as creatures, a part of the geography of hope." --from The Wilderness Letter

And a couple more by Stegner on fiction:

"In Fiction I think we should have no agenda but to tell the truth."

"How to write a story, though ignorant or baffled? You take something that is important to you, something you have brooded about. You try to see it as clearly as you can, and to fix it in a transferable equivalent. All you want in the finished print is the clean statement of the lens...Sure it's autobiography. Sure it's fiction. Either way if you have done it right, it's true."

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