Tag Archives: creativity

Notes on Susan Sontag’s “On Style”

There’s always a distance between the work of art itself and the reality it represents. This distance is “inhuman,” says Susan Sontag: it’s artificial, belonging to the representation and not coming directly from lived reality. But Sontag wants us to … Continue reading

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Arthur Machen’s “Meditations of a Tavern”

In Arthur Machen’s The Hill of Dreams, Lucian Taylor is a struggling writer prone to daydreaming. He deliberately seeks out obscure books, to learn the most useless knowledge he can find. He is sick of modern society and its day-to-day … Continue reading

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Truth and Literature

Henry Miller is obsessed with truth. And yet he wants to write literature! Literature is something other than truth. “Then to hell with literature!” Writing his novel, Henry is all the while obsessed with the idea of the real book … Continue reading

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Broken Life (Notes on Henry Miller’s Nexus)

Henry Miller is especially enjoying this conversation with Mona, who has just returned from Europe. It’s not just because he’s missed her so much; what he likes is that they are having his favourite kind of conversation: the “broken” and … Continue reading

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Limitations

“Don’t waste yourself in talk!” says Mona to Henry Miller, as he starts on another of his monologues. He shouldn’t be saying all this to her: it should be going in the book. Sometimes Henry seems to agree with her … Continue reading

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Kathy Acker, Peter Greenaway, and Storytelling

Hollywood films and popular novels are made with certain audience expectations in mind. They have a story to tell, and they are structured so that this story is easy to follow and understand. Act 1, Act 2, Act 3 – … Continue reading

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Kindred Spirits (Notes on Henry Miller’s Nexus)

Chapter 8 of Henry Miller’s Nexus is about the role that other people can play in the life of an artist, for better or worse. Life can seem lonely for an artist, without anyone in the world who understands you, … Continue reading

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