Oxy Thinking

I am now six weeks out of a double knee replacement which was made sless (slightly less) arduous because of the Oxycontin. It’s a very fine drug for many obvious reasons but mainly because it made me realize the silliness of thinking rational or, more to the point, the importance of slurtionality. That’s a word. I know it.

Anyway, what I want to say is that I came to understand things with my newfound thinking patterns, some very important things such as why Amy Klobuchar and Lois Griffin (the Family Guy wife) have the exact same voice. To understand the importance of understanding this, you only need to superimpose the voice on the girl from the Best Buy computer ads and see how many products would then be moved.

Oxy knowledge is also visual, surrendering such sparks as a metallic box of oily relics, a gurney that drifts to the left and the distinct memory of writing these things down, which means that the essential difference between spiritual and intellectual nausea is laid bare in Rachel Maddow’s speech patterns. (I know what you’re thinking.)

The point is that I’ve lost it. It’s all gone from my brain because I have weaned myself clean. All right, just one a day. Just the one! The point is that I see things right and true now. I believe in the Values and Beliefs committee even if they did find me guilty of things the chairwoman is guilty of (and not me). I’m good. She’s good too. All of them. And who really cares about any of that? We’ve all got other things on our minds.

Writing Tips from Great Writers

Writing advice is everywhere. The question is finding what works best for your craft. First, there is advice on the physical practice:

Jose Saramago: I do require a certain amount of written work per day, which usually corresponds to two pages. Two pages per day adds up to almost eight hundred per year.

Raymond Carver: Get in, get out. Don’t linger. Go on.

Ernest Hemingway: Always stop for the day while you still know what will happen next.

Writing Tips from Great Writers

And then there is advice on what you are writing.

Toni Morrison: Don’t record and editorialize on some event that you’ve already lived through.

Kurt Vonnegut: Every character should want something, even if it is only a glass of water.

Ian Fleming: Make sure that you don’t like your protagonist too much – or at all.

Writing Tips from Great Writers

Finally, there is the broader advice, how to understand exactly what you are doing.

Joan Didion: Quite often you want to tell somebody your dream, your nightmare. Well, nobody wants to hear about someone else’s dream, good or bad; nobody wants to walk around with it. The writer is always tricking the reader into listening to the dream.

Alice Munro: There should be a point where you say, the way you would with a child, this isn’t mine anymore.

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie: I think honest feedback is very important. But it’s also hard to find. Other writers can be useful, also they can not, because they’re doing the same thing, and sometimes they want you to become like them.

Writing Tips from Great Writers