Monday, May 2, 2011

The War of Art--Steven Pressfield

Brilliant and succinct meditation on the artist, the artist's calling, the philosophy of being a writer, and it does all of these things in ways that I would never have thought imaginable.  Some very memorable things in here, such as the fact that Krishna says that we all have the right to our labor, but not to the fruits of our labor.  (This means that we, as writers, have the right to work on our art--in fact, he says, we have the obligation to work on our art--but that we do not have the right to dictate to the gods, to Fate, or whatever, what should happen to our art after we create it.  So you write, and you finish, and you move on.  Brilliant in its simplicity.)  Or that we are all meant, in a Zen-like way, to do one thing in our lives, and that we allow our Ego, and specifically what he calls Resistance, to get in our way.  I'm not much for self-help books (this one, The Secret, and The Road Less Traveled are the only ones to ever do anything for me), but The War of Art is a keeper.  This one book inspired me to get up at 5ish every morning to write before I go to work, and to also work last thing at night before I go to bed.  I'm not creating genius all that time, first thing in the morning and last thing at night, but I am creating something.

Genius.  If you're a writer, buy it.  It'll change you.

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