The Art of Tetman Callis Lit & Crit Ourobos was a scribe

Ourobos was a scribe

“Sometimes people get obsessive about things, ideas, like a man who spends all his time, let’s say, thinking about the moon, staring at the moon.  Well, I have a moon of my own.  All I think about day and night is having to write.  I have to write, I have to.  I finish one story, and then I have to write another one, and then a third, and after that a fourth.  I write without stopping, like an express train; it’s the only way I know how.  Now, I ask you, what’s so beautiful and bright about that?  It’s a stupid life!  Here I am talking to you, I’m all worked up, and still I can’t forget for a minute that I’ve got a story to finish.  I see a could, like that one, shaped like a piano.  And all I can think is: I have to use that, one of my characters has to see a cloud shaped like a piano.  I smell the heliotrope, I make a mental note: a sickly-sweet smell, a widow’s color, use it to describe a summer evening.  Every word you and I are saying right now, every sentence, I capture an lock up in the back of my brain.  Because someday I can use them!  When I finish working, I go out to the theater, or go fishing, to relax and get away from everything.  Do you think I can?  No, a great iron cannonball starts rolling around in my head, an idea for a new story, and I’m hooked, I can feel my desk reeling me in, and I have to go write and write.  All the time!  And I never get any rest.  I feel like I’m devouring my own life.” – Anton Chekhov, The Seagull (trans. Schmidt; emphasis in original)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.