5 August 2015 1 comentariu
History has typically not been generous to the writerly recluse. It’s usually only a lucrative position after the fact of your success—and it works best if you’re a man—Salinger, Pynchon, Faulkner all have that esoteric aura about them that’s quite different from poor old Emily Dickinson, that self-imposed shut-in, or Flannery O’Connor, whose excursive limitations were a sad matter of physical ailment. Even Donna Tartt has to go on 12-city tours. And then there’s me. I’m not Donna, or Emily, or Flannery. I’m not getting anywhere as a young, reclusive, female writer.
This is nothing new, of course. With the Internet and social media we simply have an easier time expanding and enlarging the scope of all the old tricks. But at the same time, these platforms are marginalizing our long paragraphs and pictureless tomes even more—whether they’re online or in print. Sure our words and pictures and sound bites are freshly stocking the shelves these days, but our goods are often commodified down to pre-packaged, non-nutritive variety packs. And this development is still doing what it’s always done to art and the artist—politicizing us, making activists of us, making rhetoricians of us, making our writerly identity as much about who we are in the world of politics and community as who we are on the page.