Last month I wrote a guest post for Donna and Dave’s eclectic blog called Tweedle Dee and Tweddle Dave. I’d like to share it here, too.
“Love. Fall in love and stay in love. Write only what you love, and love what you write. The key word is love. You have to get up in the morning and write something you love, something to live for.” Ray Bradbury
The ultimate reference book sits on my desk, within reach, as I work to better my writing each day. It weighs two and a half pounds, and it has 1,059 pages. A dictionary, you might guess. Thesaurus? An out-of-print Columbia Encyclopedia? No, no, and no.
It’s my go-to book for inspiration. It’s titled, The Stories of Ray Bradbury, and it contains one-hundred stories penned by the ultimate dream-catcher. I like to start my day with a cup coffee and a page of Bradbury ―just one of each―enough to charge my creative batteries. One day I can read about a giant sea creature who falls in love with a lighthouse, the next day a “wonderful white ice cream summer suit! White, white as the August moon!”
Yes, he inspires me. So much so, that when asked in a recent interview, “If you could ask your favorite author one question, who would it be and what would you ask?” My answer came fast, without any thought. “Ray Bradbury,” I said. “I would ask him to come back to us and grace us with more of his brilliance.”
The first time I had the pleasure of seeing the man whose prose read like poetry, was 1997, when he opened the Santa Barbara Writers Conference. He stood before us, bouncing with enthusiasm as he shared precious gems of encouragement with seasoned and novice writer’s alike―each one of us hungry to learn his secrets. I went back many more years, heard him speak again and again, and each time walked away touched by his brilliance, and his love of life.
“The great fun in my life has been getting up every morning and rushing to the typewriter because some new idea has hit me. The feeling I have every day is very much the same as it was when I was twelve. In any event, here I am, eighty years old, feeling no different, full of a great sense of joy, and glad for the long life that has been allowed me. I have good plans for the next ten or twenty years, and I hope you’ll come along.” Written by Ray Bradbury on his 80th birthday.
Thinking about the ways this man has sparked my creativity, I began to wonder about the writers that have touched others in the same way. I’d love to know what authors inspire you.
Without a doubt the great Doris Lessing…remarkable in her intelligence and scope…