They seem incapable of the over-and-above stuff. I believe maybe it goes on inside their heads while they read but they are incompetent at catching it. These are typically too directly intent from the reading. They cant get going looking two ways at the same time. I do believe too they’ve been scared of the simplicity of many things they think regarding the side as they read. They wouldn’t have the face in order to connect it in writing because of the great author they have now been reading. It might be a childhood memory; it might be some homely simile; it could be a line or verse of mother goose. They need that it is bookish and big. Nevertheless they haven’t books enough within their heads to match book stuff with book stuff. Needless to say a few of that would be all right.
Indeed, in several ways Frost’s advice on essay-writing is actually suggestions about reading — that mutuality of thought between reader and writer, pulsed through because of the written book as “a heart that only beats into the chest of another.” Echoing Virginia Woolf’s dictum on how best to read a book, Frost offers counsel so passionate so it becomes almost a stream-of-consciousness prose poem, barely punctuated:
The game is matching your author thought for thought in almost any of the many ways that are possible. Reading then becomes converse — give and take. It really is only conversation when the reader takes part addressing himself to anything at all when you look at the author in the subject material or form. Just like once we talk together! Being careful to carry up our end and also to do our part agreeably without way too much contradiction and mere opinionation. The most sensible thing of all is certainly going each other one better mounting up the ideas anecdotes and incidents like alternating hands piled up regarding the knee. Well its out of conversation like this with a novel which you find perhaps one idea perhaps yours possibly the book’s that will assist for other lesser ideas to center around. And there’s your essay.
He lands from this poetic elation into some practical advice:
Be brief in the beginning. You have to be honest. You don’t want which will make your material seem more than it really is. You won’t have a great deal to express to start with as you shall have later. My defect is within without having learned to hammer my material into one lump. We haven’t had experience enough. The important points of essay won’t come in right they will in narrative for me as. Sometimes I have gotten across the difficulty by some narrative dodge.
Take it simple using the essay anything you do. Write it as well as possible if you need to write it. Be as concrete as the statutory law allows on it — concrete and experiential. Don’t allow it to scare you. Don’t strain. Keep in mind that any old thing that takes place in your thoughts you want as you read may be the thing. If nothing much seems to happen, perhaps another reading will help. Probably the book is bad or perhaps is not your kind — is absolutely nothing to both you and may start nothing in your nature some way.
He interjects a meta-remark from the nature naturalness and — associated with the essay form:
Of course this letter is essay. It really is material which have started to the outer lining of my mind in reading in the same way frost brings stones to the surface regarding the ground.
During the very end, before signing off “Affectionately Papa,” Frost can’t resist taking just a little jab at the essay, voicing the sentiment that generally seems to explain his or her own lifelong resistance to essay writing service partaking within the genre:
I don’t know you know whether its worth very that is much mean the essay — when you have it written. I’m rather afraid from it as an enemy into the writing that is really creative holds scenes and things within the eye voices within the ear and whole situations as sort of plexus within the body (I don’t know just where).
Lesley grew up to be an author herself, albeit not of essays — she published two books of stories for children: Really certainly not in 1962, published mere months before her father’s death, and Digging down seriously to China in 1968.
The Letters of Robert Frost is a trove of writerly wisdom and heartwarming parental advice to the poet’s six children, of whom Lesley and her sister Irma outlived their father in its portly 850-page totality. Complement it with Frost’s poem that is beautiful art and government, which he designed to but didn’t read at JFK’s inauguration, and F. Scott Fitzgerald from the secret of good writing in a letter of advice to his very own daughter, then revisit this growing library of writers’ advice on writing.
donating = loving
For longer than 12 years, Brain Pickings has remained free (and ad-free). It will require me hundreds or even thousands of hours a month to research and compose, and 1000s of dollars to sustain. Your support really matters. If you discover any joy and value in what i really do, please think over becoming a Sustaining Patron with a recurring monthly donation of your choosing, between a cup of tea and a good lunch.