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So What Kind of Writing is That?

I cannot answer the question "What kind of a writer are you?" Or even "What do you write?"

I think of Mitch Rubenstein's office calling and saying "We need Prime Directive for the Lugarians - inhabitants of a planet in the Sigran Galaxy - a sort of ten commandments - you know - a set of beliefs that makes them act the way they do, and think the way the think, and determines their value system - could you write them for us? Like, by tomorrow?"

And the next phone call is from a rabbi who wants an original midrash on parsha vayeira from a female point of view, and the call after that is from a university press needing an introduction to a book on Catholic Sanctuaries, or a women's magazine interested in my work on Barbara Pym, or an ad agency wanting a fifteen second spot on an online trading company, or an art museum requesting descriptions of paintings for the exhibition catalogue. (Not to mention my real work.)

So what kind of writing is that?

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Wit and Wisdom

Wise Crone Writing.  The disciplined mind attracts the uncertain and undirected as a lamp attracts fluttering moths at twilight.  Have fun with it!  No fun would be no good at all, would it.  



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Fluttering moths...

Thanks, Christine. I do, actually have fun with it. I never take on any projects I don't like (or those to which I do not think I can do justice). This was a (largely idle, I'm afraid) question of definition. My main work is literary, at times academic, pedagogical - but then, there are these interesting invitations (the most recent one to write a libretto) that, when faced with such enquiry as "What sort of thing to you write?", make the response difficult. Nobody, least of all me, wants a megillah for an answer, but what I do seems to require one. Not all that significant a dilemma, but it would be useful to have a definitive short answer.  Always a pleasure to read your comments. ~H

PS Oddly, everyone seems to think I have a disciplined mind. It is as well, then, that it is invisible. (And I detest the word "crone"!)


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Your PhD

Hi Harrsion, 

Its Joseph Aronesty. It appears my book at last is going to be published. I have been trimming it for years as you know, learning as I go. Your prolugue was a great help I am sure. So I want to say thanks and congratulate you on the PhD. Hope all is well for you and yours. Joseph A. 

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Joseph, so pleased for you. It is a fascinating, imaginative book and I'm delighted that the reading public will see it. I won't mention any more about it, not even the title, since you will want to unveil that treasure yourself. If the prologue helped, I'm delighted. Very glad that you have joined the Red Room. Looking forward to reading your blog entries when you begin. Grand wishes for literary success!  ~ Harrison

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I detest the word crone too

I detest the word crone too H. It reminds me of banshees in dark alleyways with hooked noses and always lingering in the shadows.

But it must be nice to be invited to write. Imagine that! 


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I know that the word "crone" is used very positively in some circles and is a way of mitigating against the negativity of historical associations.  For some it is a compliment - a conjuring up of wisdom and experience and at times magic. But I watched Snow White as I child and the Evil Queen who turned into a "crone" is my firm photographic memory attached to the word! My failing really. But I know Christime had a fuller, more mature definition in mind. I also have trouble with negative words for women that don't have a masculine equivalent.  We are all such a bundle of past experiences!


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Yes, there is no disputing

Yes, there is no disputing this and how broad your viewpoint is and how true. m