The Writer’s World
For most writers, reading is also a very intense experience; they don’t read so much as compete. The writer measure’s himself against every text he encounters, imagining he could do it better or wishing he had thought of it first. The natural writer would almost always rather be reading, writing, or alone, except of course when he needs to come up for air (that is, for subject matter, food, sex, love, attention). He may be a selfish son of a bitch, he may seem to care more about his work than about the people in his life, he may be a social misfit, a freak, or a smooth operator, but every person who does serious time with a keyboard is attempting to translate his version of the world into words so that he might be understood. Indeed, the great paradox of the writer’s life is how much time he spends alone trying to connect with other people.
—The Forest for the Trees by Betsy Lerner, pg. 36.
When I first saw this a number of years ago, I couldn’t help but cut it out and pin it to the wall over my desk. It’s been there ever since. This is essentially how I feel all the time. Wow.