Thursday, November 21, 2019

The art of writing …

 on Essays: One by Lydia Davis – On the Seawall. (Hat tip, Dave Lull.)

In the craft essays that make up the bulk of Lydia Davis’ collection Essays: One, the pleasure is always immediate, the joy near at hand. Perhaps this peculiar but welcome sensibility comes from Davis’ affinity for the short story, which in her case is often as short as a sentence. Perhaps it stems from her work as a translator, where she engaged phrase-by-phrase with triumphs by Proust and Flaubert. (The forthcoming Essays: Two deals directly with translation.) Whatever the reason, Davis’ writing on writing possesses a candor and warmth that are rare in the genre, even while she demands an unusual amount of rigor.
Here is an excerpt: Lydia Davis: Ten of My Recommendations for Good Writing Habits.


  1. It may just be me, but I'm finding it hard to open that link at the bottom that should lead to something Davis wrote. If you have time, could you have a look. Many thanks - and for your blog in general. I enjoy Singer's admonition to enjoy our free will because we have no choice. V amusing

    1. As you can see, Dave has helped out with that link. I agree about the Singer quote. Love your blog, too.